The GOP's "take a vacation" tax credit is a bad idea

The bill answers the question millions of suffering Americans aren’t asking: What about my second home? Travel to another residence is eligible for the credit as long as you don’t try to write off the lodging. The commute to that weekend retreat in Sedona or the Hamptons would suddenly cost less.

The travel and tourism industries have been slammed by the pandemic, but this idea is a howler even by the low standards of Congress. Like nearly all tax credits, it would subsidize behavior that would have happened anyway. Predictably, some on the left are complaining that the credit isn’t refundable—meaning the millions of Americans who pay no taxes won’t be eligible. Once set in law the credit will be hard for Congress to kill.

Other industries will also demand the same treatment. Why not a tax credit to shop at retail stores? Check that, we don’t want to give Senators any more bad ideas.