We have the signatures!!
By Neal Boortz
As of this morning, February 7th, we have almost 27,000 signatures on our petition to the White House on the “We the People” page of the official White House website. The threshold was 25,000, and it had to be reached by today. Thanks to some last minute help from Americans for Fair Taxation we reached that goal last evening.
So? What now? The petition simply asks that the President spend one hour talking with me and with Congressman John Linder. We’re the authors of the New York Times No. 1 Bestseller “The FairTax Book.” The hour would be spent discussing the FairTax. The petition asks for no action beyond that. Just sit and talk for an hour.
The White House promised a response to any petition that garners 25,000 signatures (the threshold was later raised to 100,000 signatures, but our petition had to meet the lower number.) The inclination of many is to believe that the White House will simply issue a statement to the effect that “The President understands the desires of the American people for tax reform and is dedicated to working with representatives of both parties to reach an agreement on comprehensive tax reform that will be fair to all.” Well there you go … you get the words “comprehensive” and “fair” into the statement!
There is also, of course, the fact that I’m a harsh critic of the president – and that doesn’t exactly spell success for the idea of a meeting. .
But … who knows? There could be some advantages to the White House in doing just what the petition asks … inviting me to the White House to put the FairTax plan before the president and his advisors. When the FairTax was first introduced into the congress Charlie Rangel, then the Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee – the committee responsible for considering changes to our tax laws – told Congressman Linder that the FairTax was a wonderful idea. When Linder asked him why they didn’t go ahead and pass it, Rangel responded that they would, but when the Democrats were in charge.
Well … the Democrats were in charge for two years, and nothing happened. Now the people have spoken through a petition. Here is the White House’s chance to show that the whole petition process on Whitehouse.gov isn’t just window dressing; that they will give serious consideration to a petition asking for a reasonable accommodation, a one-hour meeting. The petition process has been degraded by petitions seeking the construction of a Death Star or designation of the day after the Super Bowl as a national holiday. Here the president could show that he’s willing to give consideration to a serious idea, even from a critic.
We’ll see. I’m not holding my breath – and I’m not clearing my busy retirement schedule – but we’ll see.