Gale, William G., Director of Economic Studies, The Brookings Institution, in “VAT: The Next Big Tax Increase,” by Jim Angle,, 4/16/10

“If we really want to cut the deficit in the next five, 10 years we need to take a look at tax options.  If you are talking about a really significant chunk of revenue, value-added tax is really the only option….
…What’s crucial to understand in implementing the VAT here in the U.S. is that if we want to use it to raise revenue, we need to try to make it as immune from political considerations, as immune from targeted subsidies and carve-outs as possible. So, we don’t want to exempt food, we don’t want to exempt housing, we don’t want to exempt healthcare. If we exempt all of those things, we’ve cut into about half of the tax base of the VAT.”