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Chief Deputy of Revenue Department Explains Collidge Tax Proposal in Introduction to Debate


C. E. Wyzanski '27 and A. L. Barnhart 3L., upholding the negative of the issue "Resolved: That his house approves of President Coolidge's proposal for a rebate on the 1926 income taxes," last night won the decision of the Debating Union audience over the affirmative team composed of D. W. Chapman '27 and R. J. Otis '27. The margin of votes which gave the victory to the negative side was small.

The introductory speaker, Mr. G. W. Britt, Chief Special Deputy of the Department of Revenue, explained the Collidge rebate proposal, or the Melion-Cooliege plan, as he preferred it should be called, at some length. He declared that the issue was one of great moment since it affected the pocketbook of every taxpayer. His only objection to a rebate was the fact that it was necessarily slow and full of red tape. However, he admitted that there was a surplus of $300,000,000 in the Treasury and that Secretary A. W. Mellon could handle the relate to Mr. Mellon as "the greatest Secretary of the Treasury since Alexander Hamilton."

He explained in conclusion that the proposal called for a 15 per cent rebate on the 1926 income taxes payable on April of next year. The most important factor about the rebate, according to Mr. Britt, would be the attempt to speed Congress into legislating before the lapse of several years.

D. W. Chapman Jr. '27 and F. J. Otis '27 in their presentation of the affirmative arguments brought out the fact that a tax rebate would increase business prosperity. There would be much red tape connected with the Mellon-Coolidge proposal, affirmed Otis, because the 15 per cent rebate would be subtracted from the 1927 taxes and would not necessitate any paying back of money by the government.

The victorious negative speakers attacked the rebate plan on three counts. They asserted that it was unconstitutional, unfair, and impractical.

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