Ask us anything about the tax code

IRS Building
This April 13, 2014 photo shows The Internal Revenue Service Headquarters building Washington.
J. David Ake/AP

The ides of April — or April 15 — is Tax Day. The day has been immortalized in everything from specialty cakes to pop songs. This year, the 15th is a Friday, so you get the weekend and don’t have to file until Monday the 18th. If those two extra days are when you plan to get your taxes done, we feel you. 

The U.S. tax code is famously complicated and confusing. But does it have to be? 

The tax code has changed and evolved over the centuries as the country has changed and evolved. For instance, the United States was once income-tax free. Did you know that? Do you know what your income taxes pay for? What about your property taxes? And how are those taxes different from sales tax and estate tax and corporate taxes? 

The U.S. tax code has also been derided as unfair since the moment it was installed. So, how can we better understand its intentions as well as its impact? 

At 9 a.m. Monday, MPR News host Angela Davis spoke with a tax expert about the history of our tax code — who pays the most and why, and how we all benefit from taxes.

And we heard from you. You answered our questions: How did you learn about the tax code? Have your taxes changed as your life has changed? Have you ever done anything to avoid paying taxes? Do you have questions about who has the power to change the tax code and how it’s done?


  • Paul Gutterman is director of the Masters of Business Taxation program at the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management and has over a decade of experience in the tax area, including at the firms of Dorsey and Whitney and Ernst & Young. 

  • Willie Gregg is the tax and financial services manager at Prepare & Prosper in Saint Paul.

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