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Linder reports record number of co-sponsors for FairTax

Political Notebook

The FairTax has reached a record number of co-sponsors, U.S. Rep. John Linder said this week.

Linder, R-Duluth, first introduced in 1998 the idea for a national sales tax, along with provisions to cover needed expenses such as food.

The recent additions of U.S. Reps. Darrell Issa of California and John Boozman of Arizona, both Republicans, as co-sponsors brought the number of congressmen to 60. At the close of the 109th Congress last year, the FairTax Act was the most popular tax reform bill with 59 co-sponsors in the House.

"I am ecstatic, but I have to say, I am not terribly surprised," Linder said of surpassing his own record. "This has been the case all year. Grassroots support across the nation is motivating members to call us up and ask for information on the FairTax, and when they read it they are always eager to put their name on the bill."

Linder helped that grassroots effort in 2005, when he wrote "The FairTax Book" with radio personality Neal Boortz. The book reached the New York Times Bestseller List.

Linder pointed out that the FairTax is the most highly co-sponsored piece of tax reform legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives, with only four for the Flat Tax, which Linder called the only other serious piece of tax reform legislation in the chamber.

Linder said he spent last Saturday training about 50 people in Macon on how to educate others about the idea.

"That is real passion, and it is real traction, and I think that is what you see reflected in this incredible list of co-sponsors," he said.

Chambliss visits Iraq

Fresh off a trip to Iraq, U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss reaffirmed his commitment to the war, receiving a petition of 2,700 veterans supporting the finish of the mission.

Chambliss said he received the same response from soldiers during visits with the 3rd Infantry Division from Fort Stewart.

"The message I heard, not just from the generals and the colonels, but also from the privates and the corporals and other enlisted personnel was 'Senator, we know why we're here, we're here for the right reason, we're here to protect freedom,' and this comes from brave men and women wearing the uniform of the United States whether they have been in the military for three years or 30 years," Chambliss said.

"They're there because they know they are doing the right thing, and they don't believe, as some have asserted, that the war is lost. Time and time again, what I hear and what I heard again this weekend is that failure in Iraq is not an option, because we know that the terrorists are waiting to follow us to America."

Political Notebook appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.

Camie Young can be reached via e-mail at camie.young@gwinnettdailypost.com.