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Congressman Tom Cole

Representing the 4th District of Oklahoma


American families and small businesses are taxed too much, and the system through which we collect these taxes is overly burdensome, too complex and fundamentally unfair in many respects. 

Today’s tax code has not only grown ridiculously long but our yearly tax bill continues to get more expensive. According to the National Taxpayers Union, the total compliance cost for filing federal income tax forms added up to $227.1 billion, or nearly 1.5 percent of our Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2011. To make matters worse, the enforcement of the nation’s tax system falls to the scandal-ridden Internal Revenue Service (IRS), an agency that was previously exposed for purposefully targeting conservative and religious groups seeking tax-exempt status. While House Republicans have led efforts to keep the IRS accountable ever since, Americans rightly remain uneasy about where their hardworking tax dollars are going.

Without question, fundamental and comprehensive tax reform is needed and that is why I support legislation that drastically simplifies the tax code, closes tax loopholes, consolidates the six tax brackets into two and repeals the Alternative Minimum Tax. Personally, I favor a flat tax, but I am open to other proposals that reform our tax system by making it simpler and more transparent. 

More on Taxes

October 5, 2017 Press Release
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after the House passed H. Con. Res. 71, the Fiscal Year 2018 Budget Resolution. It passed by a vote of 219-206 with Cole’s support.
October 2, 2017 Weekly Columns
In 1986, then President Ronald Reagan introduced a sweeping plan to reform our nation’s tax system, and it worked. It simplified the outdated tax code which opened the door for individual prosperity and spurred economic growth. It also became one of the highlights of his presidency. Since then, our society has grown and the value of the U.S. dollar has changed. The working middle-class taxpayer today probably does not have the same priorities as they did in 1986.
September 27, 2017 Press Release
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after an all-Republican conference of House members, the Committee on Ways and Means, House Leadership and the Vice President provided briefings on the Republican framework for tax reform.
“I was very encouraged by the framework for tax reform that was laid out this morning,” said Cole. “While many details remain to be determined by the legislative process, it offers a positive path forward.”
June 27, 2017 Weekly Columns
The last time Congress made significant changes in the tax code, Ronald Reagan was president. A lot has changed since then, and it is long overdue for an overhaul of the tax code that reflects our changing economy, trade practices and societal priorities. When Speaker Ryan delivered his speech on tax reform last week, he made it clear that Americans must have confidence in our economy, their jobs, and their ability to care for themselves and their families. Our current tax code is overly burdensome and complicated.
January 28, 2017 News Stories
In just a few weeks, President Trump is expected to send Congress a federal budget that many expect will propose significant cuts to non-military spending. It will likely be the kind of proposal the GOP majorities in both the House and Senate have long embraced in theory but have had a harder time accepting in practice because it would require ending programs some of them support.
October 3, 2016 Weekly Columns
Every American should have the opportunity to pursue and achieve the American Dream. One of the most basic foundations of opportunity is American enterprise and the ability for citizens to enter the workforce. Our economy has seen its ups and downs throughout our history. But since this Administration took office, the economy has seen more bad than good.
September 26, 2016 Weekly Columns
Americans have become all too familiar with the recent confusing and shady practices of the Internal Revenue Service, and no one looks forward to seeing an envelope from them in their mailbox. It is one of the most unpopular government agencies because it is also one of the most powerful in its ability to literally ruin people’s lives.
July 25, 2016 Weekly Columns
One of the greatest aspirations we have in this nation is the concept of the “American Dream”. The idea that any person, regardless of race, ethnicity, gender or religion can achieve prosperity, happiness and success has always been a bedrock principle of our national experience. Achieving the American Dream generally relies upon individual initiative, so the best way the government can assist in the pursuit is to get out of the way.
June 13, 2016 Weekly Columns
As intentionally spelled out in the U.S. Constitution in the first and arguably most foundational amendment, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.”