In 2016 Tech Agenda, ITIF Tells Presidential Campaigns, ‘It’s the Enterprise, Stupid!’

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Strategy Memo Outlines Policy Program to Spur Innovation, Productivity, and Competitiveness

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In the past, it was enough to say in broad terms, ‘It’s the economy, stupid!’ But to truly flourish again, we need to put a finer point on it: ‘It’s the enterprise, stupid!’

The non-partisan Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF) today released an open memo to all Democratic and Republican presidential campaigns outlining a comprehensive tech policy agenda for 2016. The memo enumerates a series of measures to spur broad-based economic growth by supporting the fundamental drivers of innovation, productivity, and competitiveness. The memo is accompanied by a draft campaign speech on fostering 21st century enterprise, which ITIF encourages candidates to borrow from freely.

“Innovation, productivity, and competitiveness need to be at the core of America’s economic policy and right now they are not,” said Rob Atkinson, president of ITIF. “Focusing on enterprises means getting past the tired but well entrenched partisan doctrines about building from the middle out or driving supply-side saving and instead zeroing in on the real drivers of growth in the 21st century. In the past, it was enough to say in broad terms, ‘It’s the economy, stupid!’ But to truly flourish again, we need to put a finer point on it: ‘It’s the enterprise, stupid!’”

The memo and speech are focused on three core policy goals:

-Fostering innovation, including increasing federal funding for research, expanding the R&D tax credit, building a higher-skilled workforce, and promoting entrepreneurship.

-Boosting productivity, including an investment tax credit, accelerated IT transformation in industries, raising the minimum wage, closing the digital divide, and expanding surface transportation funding.

-Competing globally, including lowering the corporate tax rate to 25 percent, adopting a territorial tax system, and adopting new trade agreements while putting trade enforcement at the center of U.S. foreign policy.

“It should be clear to everyone that America needs a better plan than we have had in the past to grow in the rapidly evolving global, innovation economy,” Atkinson said. “We invite all of the presidential campaigns to incorporate this agenda into their plans.”

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