Cain promotes '9-9-9' tax plan, lays out his economic policies
September 5th, 2011
04:54 PM ET
10 years ago

Cain promotes '9-9-9' tax plan, lays out his economic policies

(CNN) - On the eve of rival Mitt Romney's speech announcing his own jobs plan, Republican presidential hopeful Herman Cain laid out his own plan for turning the sagging economy around.

Speaking Monday in South Carolina at the Palmetto Freedom Forum sponsored by Sen. Jim DeMint, R-South Carolina, Cain laid out his "bold" plan dubbed "9-9-9." The former businessman explained that he would do away with the existing tax code and replace it with a nine percent tax on corporate income, a nine percent tax on personal income and a nine percent national sales tax.

Asked by DeMint what he would do about the country's massive debt, Cain responded that "we must boost economic growth," adding that GDP growth of five or six percent would be a target to strive for. Then, citing his own experience from the business world, Cain said he favors an across-the-board cut to federal spending of, perhaps, ten percent. Cain would follow that up with a "deep dive" into the budget of each federal agency "to eliminate that programs that are, in fact, duplicative [and] outdated - based upon performance metrics – and eliminate a lot of those programs." Third, Cain said the federal government needs to "get serious" about restructuring the big entitlement programs like Social Security. On that score, Cain said he favors personal retirement accounts and pointed to the changes Chile made in its retirement savings program.

Cain told DeMint that he favors a legal requirement of balancing the federal budget. "I believe in a balanced budget amendment [to the Constitution]. Yes, because otherwise, we're not going to have the discipline in Washington in terms of collectively of getting that."

And Cain took a moment to blast the inside-the-Beltway thinking of some on Capitol Hill. "The idea in Washington, D.C. if you reduce the growth, that's a cut. That's not a cut. That's deceiving the American people," Cain explained as both DeMint and Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, listened.

Cain also told DeMint he would try to rein in the Federal Reserve Bank by asking Congress to limit the Fed's authority.

And echoing rival Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, Cain said Monday that "We have got to get back to sound money."

"Our dollar is suffering," said Cain. He added, "When we wake up in the morning, an hour is 60 minutes. We don't have to go look in the paper to see what it's worth. We've got to get back to a dollar is a dollar is a dollar."

Asked by DeMint whether he favored a return to a gold standard for U.S. currency to achieve that, Cain said, "Yes, we do need a gold standard to do that. We can work our way back to a standard – that's the only way we're going to make our currency, the currency that people around the world depend upon. So, yes, I do support establishing standards and there are many ways to do it in addition to a gold standard."

Filed under: 2012 • DeMint Labor Day Forum • Herman Cain • Jim DeMint • South Carolina • Taxes
soundoff (31 Responses)
  1. Jae

    Cain, what r ur ideas on affirmative action? Some on ur side thinks it's unconstitutional, what do u think? And I will start calling u mr when u racists tea party calls the President. President

    September 5, 2011 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  2. danel

    Now do you think some of the repugs will sign up for that? NO WAY! You cannot pass that idea without the approval of Grover Norquest.

    September 5, 2011 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  3. Georgia Tee

    He needs to stick to those cheap, poor quality pizza's

    September 5, 2011 07:40 pm at 7:40 pm |
  4. Angy

    another typical repug, blah,blah,blah,blah.

    September 5, 2011 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  5. R E

    Not a new plan, but he needs to add some items to that strain of Democratic thinking of his: a national drivers license, a national lottery and a national for-profit community college system (University of America). Democrats have preached all of these ideas for 10+ years, but if the Republican want to take the credit ...

    September 5, 2011 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  6. johnborg

    This guy is insane. Think about this: A corporation is making $100,000,000 (I understand all corporations make more than this, but for effect keep following). In taxes they would pay $900,000 in taxes. If I make $1,000, I would pay $90 in taxes. Who does this hurt more! The individual. Lets be honest, under Reagan, who cut corporate taxes, poverty went up. Employment staggered and went down a little in the middle. Yet, where it did go down it was mostly due to the creation of low-paying jobs. So, now I have a job that I can't survive on, but I'm making to much for welfare. I'm screwed. The tea baggers are crazy. Take a social stratification college class, understand who these policies really affect.

    September 5, 2011 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
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