Republicans are campaigning, using the deficit to tout their ‘common sense no spending’ efforts, which are a falsehood. Consider the cost of war alone. Taxes are a main talking point as Republican politicians want to keep the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy, yet the majority of America wants them to end.
Fifty-three percent of Americans agree with Mr. Obama that the tax cuts for the wealthy should be allowed to expire, while 38 percent do not, according to the poll, conducted Sept. 10-14.
The majority isn’t in a position to want tax cuts for the wealthy and wait for the trickle down effect which never worked in the past. This further proves that the right wing is not concerned with the well being of the middle and lower classes.
Americans claim to grow weary of this administration’s spending, and at the same time expect a miracle cure to the deficit the previous administration left.
If Congressional Republicans’ goal is to convince the American people that they care about spending, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s latest tax proposal that would double the nation’s deficit over the next decade to $4 trillion is a perplexing start. A story in The Washington Post today outlines the Senate Republicans’ plan, while ironically quoting him as saying “We have a spending problem.”
And just this morning, according to another Washington Post story John Boehner caved to the wealthy special interests and flipped his position back to supporting the extension of the tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans while holding the middle class tax cuts hostage.
Instead of joining President Obama in his call to extend the middle class tax cuts to working families, to the people who need it most, McConnell and Boehner’s focus appears to be on millionaires and billionaires who aren’t asking for a tax cut. During these challenging economic times, we simply can’t afford to borrow another $700 billion over the next decade to give an average tax cut of $100,000 to Americans making over $1 million per year.
What’s clear is that Senator McConnell’s and Congressman Boehner’s plan would do absolutely nothing to grow our economy, put people back to work and strengthen America’s middle class. Instead, it would take us back to the same exact failed economic policies that created the mess we’re in: cut taxes for millionaires and billionaires; cut rules for the special interests and big corporations and cut the middle class loose to fend for itself.
As Senator McConnell said yesterday, “if we want to begin to get ourselves out of this economic trough that we’re in, the only way to do that is to grow the private sector.” But his solution to growing our economy is to enact tax cuts that will significantly add to our nation’s deficit over the next decade. And he pretends that it would be paid for through a projected spending freeze, but fails to mention what he would freeze or cut, or that, as The Washington Post puts it, the freeze would be only “a drop in the bucket compared with his $4 trillion-plus plan.”
And this is not the first time Mitch McConnell said one thing and did another.
After voting against the bipartisan fiscal commission – a plan he enthusiastically supported when it was introduced in Congress – McConnell was quoted on “Meet the Press” last month saying that if the plan was responsible, he would “encourage [Republican Senate] members to support it.”
This is the same Senator McConnell who encouraged his caucus to vote against the fiscal commission amendment in the Senate. Unfortunately, this really shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. If the Congressional Republicans have been clear about anything over the past 19 months, it’s that they’re far more interested in political games and standing up for big special interests than offering serious solutions to our nation’s problems.
The Congressional Republicans have tried very hard over the past 19 months to convince the American people that they were the only ones who could be trusted with getting spending under control and reducing the deficit. This argument was always laughable, considering these are the same people that took a budget surplus at the end of the Clinton administration and turned it into a $1.3 trillion deficit. Now we have further evidence that, despite all of their bluster about deficits and out of control spending, it’s clear that the Congressional Republicans have no plans to fix these problems and is unprepared to govern responsibly.
Flashback to 2008:
In unveiling his final budget this month, President Bush again called for making his tax cuts from 2001 and 2003 permanent, rather than letting them expire as scheduled at the end of 2010. That would be irresponsible.
The chart below, from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities using data from the Congressional Budget Office, illustrates why the tax cuts have to go
All else being equal, if the tax cuts are made permanent — without making up for the lost revenue by raising other taxes or cutting spending — debt-to-GDP will rise inexorably starting after 2010, reaching 100 percent in 2035 and more than 200 percent in 2050. Courting debt loads of that magnitude implies severe economic distress.
In contrast, if the tax cuts are allowed to expire, debt-to-GDP will dip a bit in the decades to come and then rise rapidly, to 100 percent by 2050, pushed up mainly by rising health care costs. That’s still a big problem, but not nearly as big as it will be if the tax cuts are also extended.
Let’s not let history repeat itself. Why is this a debate? A better question is why do right wing politicians want to give the wealthier Americans a tax cut? Putting America first is necessary and corporations are what the Republican Party represent. Grasping the claim that the Tea Party movement is about government spending and lower taxes is difficult considering most of them, if not all, will be voting Republican if the two usual choices are left campaigning.
Vote Democrat. Obama/Biden 2012
Image hijacked from Heat Hoops