Tax Cuts or Welfare?

By on 10.23.08 | 12:06PM

Many conservative critics of Obama's tax plan, including yours truly, have objected that Obama has characterized as tax cuts what really amount to subsidies for non-taxpayers. But a few free-market types, most notably Ramesh Ponnuru and Dave Weigel, have pushed back against this. They both point out, correctly, that McCain also supports refundable tax credits in some instances -- that is, the extension of tax benefits to people with little or no income tax liability. Ponnuru also observes that most of these workers do pay payroll taxes even if they don't pay income taxes,