Deep Thought: GOP And Taxes
One thing I’ve noticed over the last two years or so is a neat rhetorical trick Republicans have tried to play on House Democrats regarding taxes, which is to count any vote on any issue which might relate to the possibility of tax increases as a vote to raise taxes.
For example, the House passed a budget resolution in 2007 that assumed that the Bush tax cuts of 2001 and 2003 would expire as they are set to do in current law – no law would change under the budget, but letting those taxes expire would result in higher tax rates for certain individuals. In response, the Republicans based Democrats for voting for “the biggest tax increase in history”.
Hyperbole aside, maybe they were on to something, rhetorically. Let’s turn this around on them for a moment.
If you pass a tax cut that will cost $1.5 trillion over 10 years (and maybe more after that), but you play things too cut by half by putting an expiration date on those tax cuts, to get around procedural hurdles. So, by 2009, your legislation would spend $1.5 trillion in cutting taxes, but in 2010, the tax cuts expire and thus you automatically raise people’s taxes back to where they were in 2001. In effect, proposing to cut taxes in the short-term only to raise them again later.
So if a vote for budget that let’s this happen is a vote for tax increases, isn’t a vote to pass that legislation in the first place ALSO a vote for tax increases? After all, the vote to pass that legislation is the vote responsible for the tax increase being a factor in the House’s budget calculations. So isn’t the entire Republican Party in both houses on record in favor of a tax increase in 2011 because they enacted Bush’s (temporary) tax cuts?
I’d love to see some attacks ads making that point known.