Want lower tax rates? Hire a lobbyist.
Is anyone really shocked by this?
The top eight companies that spent the most on federal lobbying from 2007 to 2009 all saw their reported tax rates decrease from 2007 to 2010, according to a new analysis released Monday by the Sunlight Foundation.
Another good paragraph:
Companies lobby so much because Congress is constantly making changes to the tax code. Between 1987 and 2011, the number of pages in the CCH Standard Federal Tax Reporter (one measure of the growing complexity of the federal tax code) more than doubled, growing from 33,030 pages to 72,574 pages. More than half of those pages have been added since 2001. In 2005, the President’s Advisory Panel on Tax Reform counted approximately 15,000 separate changes to the tax code since 1986 (more than two a day).
Sunlight doesn’t have any causal evidence linking the lobbying to the lower tax rates. But it would be fairly odd if they were spending all that money and getting nothing.