White House: No Tax Hike

White House backs off Bush's comments on national sales tax.

The White House is denying that President Bush is considering a national sales tax. The denial comes a day after Bush created a stir by calling such a tax "an interesting idea that we ought to explore seriously." The flap was prompted by an exchange between Bush and a supporter who asked during a town-hall meeting in Florida about Bush's position on legislation for a national sales tax. Democratic rival John Kerry seized on Bush's comments and suggested such a plan would create a new tax on working families. Conservatives have pushed for the administration to do more to overhaul the tax code, with some calling for either a so-called "flat" income tax or some variation of a federal sales tax.