Despite the Fair Tax’s shortcomings as policy, politically it has brought together a coalition of conservative, largely middle-class activists looking for radical solutions to big government and its most detested public symbol, the Internal Revenue Service. I’ve never met a Fair Tax supporter who wouldn’t prefer not to be taxed at all, whether on income or consumption. Said Charleston Fair Tax activist John Steinberger of his cause, “It’s a good first step.” Admits Vance, an ardent Fair Tax opponent, “It is the most radical tax reform plan, bar none.”
The Fair Tax’s radicalism is key. The tea party protesters seemed to genuinely desire a radical change in the way our government conducts its business, not simply minor reforms or more business-as-usual.