At the Fox News Republican debate in Myrtle Beach, S.C. Monday night the five remaining candidates were queried about what they believed the highest possible federal income tax rate should be.
While the rest of the field offered substantive percentages, Texas Rep. Ron Paul set himself apart by saying that Americans’ income tax rate should be zero percent. (RELATED: Full coverage of Ron Paul’s campaign)
“We should have the lowest tax that we’ve ever had, and up until 1913 it was zero percent,” Paul said. “What’s so bad about that?”
By contrast Texas Gov. Rick Perry said the highest rate should be 20 percent, Gingrich said the highest rate should be 15 percent, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney said 25 percent and former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum said it should be 28 percent.
Paul added, however, that the real culprit in the tax game is inflation.
“Now I would like to follow up on that because I think the question on taxes is generally misleading, because anytime you spend money it’s a tax,” Paul added. “You might tax, you might barrow, you might inflate. The vicious tax that is attacking the American people, the retired people today, is the inflation tax. The devaluation of the currency. The standard of living is going down and you need to address that. And that is why I want to make the inflation tax zero as well.”
Fox News host Brett Baier attempted to clarify his statement, asking “So your answer is zero?”
“Zero,” Paul answered.