The Tax Policy Center’s TaxVox argues that instead of getting confused about baselines, we should look at what revenue each candidate's tax plan will generate, compared to the CBO's projected expenditures of 19.7 percent of GDP.
Good idea. But instead of what McCain adviser Doug Holtz-Eakin says that he wants his boss to advocate, let’s use the proposals that McCain himself has articulated again and again in his stump speech. According to the Tax Policy Center’s own analysis,
By 2018, tax revenues would be 16.3 percent of GDP, a level not seen since the early 1950s, before enactment of Medicaid, Medicare, or the national highway system. It seems clear that the promises Senator McCain makes (or implies) in his speeches could not be sustained without a radical and unprecedented downsizing of government.