Senate Republicans promise filibusters until tax issue resolved

posted at 12:15 pm on December 1, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

The Republicans in the Senate have decided to flex their muscles to get Harry Reid focused on the economy instead of DREAM Acts and expansion of environmental regulation.  In a letter signed by all 42 Republicans in the upper chamber, the Republican caucus pledged to filibuster every bill that Reid pushes until the Senate deals with the tax hikes scheduled for the end of the year:

Senate Republicans are vowing to block all legislative business until Democrats hold votes on bills to extend the Bush-era tax cuts and keep the government funded through the new year.

In a letter signed by all 42 Republicans, Republicans warn they will filibuster any attempt to bring forward any bill besides those two measures. That could further complicate Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s desire to complete a laundry list of other bills in the final weeks of the 111th Congress.

Citing the nation’s high unemployment rate and the desire to “focus on creating an environment for private-sector job growth” Republicans are telling Reid “that we will not agree to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to any legislative item until the Senate has acted to fund the government and we have prevented the tax increase that is currently awaiting all American taxpayers.

“With little time left in this Congressional session, legislative scheduling should be focused on these critical priorities,” the letter said. “While there are other items that might ultimately be worthy of the Senate’s attention, we cannot agree to prioritize any matters above the critical issues of funding the government and preventing a job-killing tax hike.”

As my good friend Scott Johnson asks, “[C]ouldn’t they have signed off on it before the Senate passed the stupid and misguided Nanny state food bill on Monday?”  According to the Politico report, it may have been Reid’s insistence on pushing S510 that provided the catalyst for the letter.  The caucus apparently decided on this strategy Monday night after the S510 vote, and after it became clear that the Democrats planned to stall for time on the tax hikes.

Jim Inhofe highlighted a report from E&E News that Reid was about to push through a massive, omnibus environmental legislation expansion in the next few days as well:

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid told Senate colleagues this week he will move forward with an eleventh-hour effort to pass a massive package of waterways, public lands and wildlife bills during the lame-duck session, sources say, in what could be a rare environmental victory for a Congress marked by major defeats on climate change and oil spill legislation.

The Nevada Democrat offered his assurances Monday night after a group of about 10 Senate Democrats, including key committee leaders Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) and Jeff Bingaman (D-N.M.), met with him in a room off the Senate floor to ask him to intensify his efforts to push a bill through the heavily divided Senate, which already faces a packed agenda for the waning days of this Congress, the sources said.

“They went to the leader to say, ‘We want you to pay attention to this more than you have,’” said an environmental lobbyist closely involved in the effort. Reid’s office did not respond to a request for comment last night.

By all accounts, Reid was receptive and the meeting was a success. Afterward, Reid’s staff reached out to the offices of senators involved to ask for a draft of the proposed legislation, which was expected to be delivered to the leader’s office either last night or today.

In other words, the letter has been prompted not by a partisan calculation but in response to a partisan calculation.  Democrats have yet to pass a budget for FY2011, and the tax hikes still hang like a Sword of Damocles over businesses and consumers alike.  Instead of handling their basic duties — which one might have expected Democrats to do after getting a historical spanking in the midterms — they’re drinking as much champagne as they can find on the Titanic before it completely submerges.

The Republican letter may have been a little late in regards to S510, and it probably doesn’t quite go far enough, either.  They should pledge to filibuster anything unrelated to passing a budget and repealing the scheduled tax hikes altogether in this lame-duck session, and tell Reid to save his massive wish list for government expansion for the next session of Congress.


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All the tax cuts will expire…

PatriotRider on December 1, 2010 at 12:21 PM

Right. We won’t let gays and the majority of the US forget that the GOP decided to keep penalizing gays in the military just because the GOP decided to have a hissy fit. Losers. Let the tax cuts expire and blame the GOP.

Jimbo3 on December 1, 2010 at 12:21 PM

Great. Just as inflation will make food more expensive this bill will make it even more expensive. All part of the plan folks. Get as many people into the poor house who will be dependent on govt for their survival.

angryed on December 1, 2010 at 12:22 PM

I hope the tax cuts expire. Here’s why:

People have been told for the past 8 years that the Bush tax cuts were only for the rich. A couple of paychecks in Jan will show them that was a lie.

I have confidence that the rates will be lowered back to what they are today by about February 15th once the masses understand that “tax the rich” means tax everyone.

angryed on December 1, 2010 at 12:24 PM

Party of NO!

cornfedbubba on December 1, 2010 at 12:24 PM

Jimbo3 on December 1, 2010 at 12:21 PM

What the hell are you talking about?

fiatboomer on December 1, 2010 at 12:25 PM

About time they learned not to roll over

EliTheBean on December 1, 2010 at 12:25 PM

The Senate Republicans should have done this out of the gate. The farcically-named “Food Safety Bill” should not have been allowed to pass without more disclosure and debate. Like, WTF? Another bill that no one has read getting passed, and a bunch of ‘pubs even voted FOR it?!

Speaking of…Sen Lemieux (R-FL), don’t bother challenging Sen. Nelson in 2012. You’re done.

ornery_independent on December 1, 2010 at 12:25 PM

A little late but awesomely awesome. They should simply filibuster everything except budgets. Simply, the DNC got rejected by the people, they no longer have authority to make sweeping changes…any changes. The GOP should’ve been doing this for ages but oh well, at least there’s some back bone.

joeindc44 on December 1, 2010 at 12:26 PM

Just getting all the RINOs to sign on to the letter is an accomplishment in itself. It remains to be seen if they follow through on their threat.

Done That on December 1, 2010 at 12:26 PM

When does the lame duck session end? My worry is about amnesty more than tax cuts.

angryed on December 1, 2010 at 12:27 PM

I’ll believe it when I see it. That weak chinned sumbich don’t have the stones for a REAL standoff.

abobo on December 1, 2010 at 12:28 PM

Translation: “This government functions, first and foremost, as a means of lessening the social burden on those with the most resources.”

ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 12:29 PM

When does the lame duck session end? My worry is about amnesty more than tax cuts.

angryed on December 1, 2010 at 12:27 PM

The Boss Emerita has a post up – Harry filed for cloture on DREAM, so the vote would be late Friday (or Saturday, if they have a Saturday session.

Wethal on December 1, 2010 at 12:29 PM

Right. We won’t let gays and the majority of the US forget that the GOP decided to keep penalizing gays in the military just because the GOP decided to have a hissy fit.
Jimbo3 on December 1, 2010 at 12:21 PM

Because that is the most important issue facing us.
/

Wake up.

Vashta.Nerada on December 1, 2010 at 12:30 PM

Al though I really wish this came out before the passing of S510, frankly, as a centrist Independent who leans to the right… I LOVE IT!

This IS what I voted for. I voted for compromise only on the compromisable. Some of these bills that Harry Reid wishes to conduct a vote on either are uncompromisable in nature or are to be voted on in an uncompromisable time frame.

For instance…

As a centrist I don’t see how the Dream Act is compromisable. Without addressing our borders first, while adding to an illegal immigrants wishes for self fulfillment as opposed to STRICTLY repaying their debt to this country through means of just military service, and while offering federal tuition assistance to illegal immigrants who could be, according to the specifics of the bill, well into their 30′s (a tasty little nugget I actually did not believe existed until I examined the bill thoroughly), these are non starters. Centrist Indys like me voted to focus on the economy with the precision of a laser beam, and not leftist pieces of controversial rhetoric and policy.

As for DADT, I think that is surely a compromisable issue, but we are not dealing with a giving timeframe of two and a half weeks. I don’t want to see this debated now… I want Congress to figure out just what the heck is going on with our taxes, cut some spending, and PASS A BUDGET!

To be honest, I dont even want them discussing the START Treaty until the new year, despite my agreement with its need for ratification.

Say all you want about Republicans being the Party of “No,” but that suited them well enough to gain 63 House seats, and will serve them well enough for the remainder of the Lame Duck session (al though such posturing wont serve them well come January).

I am proud of the GOP for putting something like this forth. I just hope Mitch can keep his caucus together for the next 2.5 weeks on this one.

And in regards to S510, it looks like that one might not pass the House due to a small procedural snafu on the part of Mr. Reid.

Indy82 on December 1, 2010 at 12:31 PM

Filibuster everything except budgets. No more progressive/socialist agenda items.

Not the party of NO, but the party of HELL NO.

petefrt on December 1, 2010 at 12:32 PM

When does the lame duck session end? My worry is about amnesty more than tax cuts.

angryed on December 1, 2010 at 12:27 PM

The Boss Emerita has a post up – Harry filed for cloture on DREAM, so the vote would be late Friday (or Saturday, if they have a Saturday session.

well, hopefully, our side of the aisle can get the same 42 vote pledge (plus, I am sure some democrats like Nelson and Lieberman too, right? right? hello?) and bombard the Senate with calls.

joeindc44 on December 1, 2010 at 12:32 PM

Wow, Ernesto, Jimbo, CornfedBubba all here within minutes of each other.

George Soros must have sent out a bulletin for all the trolls to come post drivel at HA ASAP. Grow Fins should be along any minute now….

angryed on December 1, 2010 at 12:33 PM

Filibuster everything except budgets. No more progressive/socialist agenda items.

Not the party of NO, but the party of HELL NO.

Indeed, the GOP is so used to losing that they don’t even know what the meaning of winning is.

The left lost its right to lead. They have been refudiated, heck, repudiated even.

No more legislation from these dumbos.

joeindc44 on December 1, 2010 at 12:34 PM

Good move.

The Dems are obviously stalling. They’ve probably decided they’d rather suffer the short term political price of having taxes go up in trade for more wealth to redistribute to Democrat voters before ’12.

This way they can’t claim that they “ran out of time”, they’ve been warned.

FloatingRock on December 1, 2010 at 12:35 PM

It’s a start. It is good to see some cohesion among senate elephants. I just saw Reid on TV responding to the letter and, well… if Nevadans crap out in an election what’s your chances in Vegas? Same ol’ bitter Harry!

cartooner on December 1, 2010 at 12:36 PM

Filibuster everything until the tax cuts get passed, then filibuster everything else anyway.

fusionaddict on December 1, 2010 at 12:36 PM

Jim Inhofe highlighted a report from E&E News that Reid was about to push through a massive, omnibus environmental legislation expansion in the next few days as well:

Was this the bill in which the feds basically took over control of every lake and waterway in the country? That might be enough to get Murkowski and the Maine Twins on board with the filibuster.

Wethal on December 1, 2010 at 12:38 PM

Can this Government collapse already….

the shit is so deep …we gotta start over anyway. Friends and family… families and friends….

JEEBUS….. Just look at New Orleans… it was wiped away by a flood and look at the politics of the city. All da old machines are back… da Mayor is da kid of the Mayor that started the city’s decline and was Sec of HUD under Carter.

roflmao

donabernathy on December 1, 2010 at 12:38 PM

Translation: “This government functions, first and foremost, as a means of lessening the social burden on those with the most resources.”

ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 12:29 PM

I’m going to guess you are either unemployed or work for the Government, because you have no clue who actually employs folks in this country. It ain’t the folks with less resources, idiot. Even if this was a simple question of preserving the wealth of the wealthiest, which it’s not. But you’re just not intelligent enough to see the bigger picture.

tickleddragon on December 1, 2010 at 12:39 PM

Finally something to be happy about. Block everything until tax cuts extended and then continue to block this progressive BS agenda.

bopbottle on December 1, 2010 at 12:40 PM

People have been told for the past 8 years that the Bush tax cuts were only for the rich. A couple of paychecks in Jan will show them that was a lie.

angryed on December 1, 2010 at 12:24 PM

About $285 bucks per month more will come out of my employee’s monthly paychecks (they make about $40,000 a year) and about $385 per month for my two foremen ($70,000 per year salary).

That’s a car payment or their monthly grocery bill.

Knucklehead on December 1, 2010 at 12:40 PM

I was going to say “A little too little, a little too late” but I prefer to be an optimist and say “Better late than never.”

Hang tough guys. When you say something, you had better mean it. Don’t go all weak-kneed and begin to back-slide. Stick to your guns.

DuctTapeMyBrain on December 1, 2010 at 12:43 PM

angryed on December 1, 2010 at 12:24 PM

You may be on to something, angryed, I like it!

cartooner on December 1, 2010 at 12:44 PM

tickleddragon on December 1, 2010 at 12:39 PM

People can’t create jobs without infrastructure. Businesses and economies do not exist in some sort of social vacuum where only their tax rate matters. As it stands, insisting that the federal government stop all other business until the wealthiest among us are taken care of is at the very least a misguided priority. The merits of the tax rates are debatable, but making this agenda item numero uno basically turns the federal government, first and foremost, into an agent of the wealthiest.

ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 12:47 PM

Citing the nation’s high unemployment rate and the desire to “focus on creating an environment for private-sector job growth” Republicans are telling Reid “that we will not agree to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to any legislative item until the Senate has acted to fund the government and we have prevented the tax increase that is currently awaiting all American taxpayers.

One critical issue not mentioned in this letter–for HOW LONG will they “fund the government”? If a budget is adopted for the entire FY 2011 in the lame-duck session, House Republicans won’t be able to de-fund ObamaCare or regulatory agencies until October 2011.

Senate Republicans should insist on a SHORT-TERM “continuing resolution” to fund the government at current levels until, for example, the end of February, to avoid a government shutdown, but enable the incoming House to de-fund harmful projects early next year, instead of allowing over-spending to continue through September.

Steve Z on December 1, 2010 at 12:48 PM

All your tax cuts are belong to us!

shanimal on December 1, 2010 at 12:48 PM

People can’t create jobs without infrastructure.

ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 12:47 PM

Do you seriously think that “infrastructure” is the source of our economic problems? LOL!

FloatingRock on December 1, 2010 at 12:49 PM

ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 12:29 PM

I’m going to guess you are either unemployed or work for the Government, because you have no clue who actually employs folks in this country. It ain’t the folks with less resources, idiot. Even if this was a simple question of preserving the wealth of the wealthiest, which it’s not. But you’re just not intelligent enough to see the bigger picture.

tickleddragon on December 1, 2010 at 12:39 PM

He spends most of his day playing “firing squad” so when he grows up he can be Che jr.

cartooner on December 1, 2010 at 12:49 PM

Steve Z on December 1, 2010 at 12:48 PM

Sounds like a good plan to me.

FloatingRock on December 1, 2010 at 12:51 PM

FloatingRock on December 1, 2010 at 12:49 PM

No, but its one of the requirements of a functioning economy. My point is that the government’s responsibility towards the economy does not begin and end with the tax rates of the nation’s wealthiest. The current GOP leadership disagrees. That was my only point.

ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 12:51 PM

The Nov election was taken and won on stopping the insane Liberal agenda in its tracks and repealing as much of it as possible.

Bout time the incumbant Repubs did what the voters told them to do. They had better stop everything ,except making the current tax structure permanent and passing a balanced Federal Budget.

EVERYTHING else can wait for new blood.
Looks like some old blood needs to be gone for allowing SB510 through.
Remember Nov. 2012

That might be enough to get Murkowski MUR COW WATERBOARDME and the Maine Twins on board with the filibuster.

Wethal on December 1, 2010 at 12:38 PM

dhunter on December 1, 2010 at 12:52 PM

BTW, they have to do the food bill all over again. Apparently Harry Reid does know the constitution and realize that all tax bills MUST START IN THE HOUSE!

ConservativePartyNow on December 1, 2010 at 12:53 PM

Oops meant to say:

BTW, they have to do the food bill all over again. Apparently Harry Reid does not know the constitution and realize that all tax bills MUST START IN THE HOUSE!

ConservativePartyNow on December 1, 2010 at 12:53 PM

ConservativePartyNow on December 1, 2010 at 12:54 PM

No, but its one of the requirements of a functioning economy.

ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 12:51 PM

We already meet or exceed that requirement. Sure, there’s always room for improvement but it has little if anything to do with our current economic plight. If anything, we have too much infrastructure. It’s crumbling do to incompetence and is so burdensome that it is actually costing our economy greatly. This excess infrastructure needs to be trimmed to increase efficiency. The infrastructure of which I speak is the federal government.

FloatingRock on December 1, 2010 at 12:55 PM

Hey McConnell – two words – Turtleneck Sweater

jake-the-goose on December 1, 2010 at 12:56 PM

About $285 bucks per month more will come out of my employee’s monthly paychecks (they make about $40,000 a year) and about $385 per month for my two foremen ($70,000 per year salary).

Knucklehead on December 1, 2010 at 12:40 PM

Let’s not forget that higher health insurance premiums will kick in after Jan 1. A nice reduction in disposable income might be on its way.

WashJeff on December 1, 2010 at 12:57 PM

The farcically-named “Food Safety Bill” should not have been allowed to pass without more disclosure and debate.
ornery_independent on December 1, 2010 at 12:25 PM

Of course you’re right, but what does it really mean? This bill should have been proactively outflanked, roped, hog-tied, and heckled at loudly. There is simply no way that a responsive and responsible opposition political party that experienced a phenomenon like November 2nd could POSSIBLY have allowed this bill to skate through the way it did. Something is deeply wrong, still deeply wrong — which is deeply disturbing after November 2nd.

rrpjr on December 1, 2010 at 1:02 PM

Ernesto – please explain how trying to prevent the LOWEST tax rate (10% now) from growing by a factor of half (will be 15%) its current rate is focusing only on the “wealthiest among us”.

The GOP wants ALL tax rates to stay at their curent rate.

DOOF on December 1, 2010 at 1:05 PM

No, but its one of the requirements of a functioning economy. My point is that the government’s responsibility towards the economy does not begin and end with the tax rates of the nation’s wealthiest. The current GOP leadership disagrees. That was my only point.

ernesto

More class warfare BS. The tax increase for someone making $50k will be an additional $2900. The tax increase for someone making a million $$ will be $10K. Now which tax bracket will be hurt more? I’d say the 50k dude is going to miss $3k more than the millionaire will miss $10K. These tax cuts need to be addressed immediately to help the middle class. Period.

JAM on December 1, 2010 at 1:07 PM

don’t get started with the troll. He’s probably one of those smugs at the stewart rally who thinks the tea party is stupid because duh taxes pay for roads and the tea partiers are standing on roads, so therefore being against taxes is stupid.

Armchair totalitarians like troll don’t understand how an economy works or how jobs are made. This country was rich and prosperous before their idiot ideas got made into laws and now we’re going broke. Centralized planning doesn’t work and no amount of smug or appeals to infrastructure spending is going to change it.

joeindc44 on December 1, 2010 at 1:08 PM

In a letter signed by all 42 Republicans, Republicans warn they will filibuster any attempt to bring forward any bill besides those two measures.

*gulp*

..this includes the Maine Sisters and that Murtha Lebowski broad from AK, don’t it?

The War Planner on December 1, 2010 at 1:08 PM

to put it simply, the private sector can take care of itself, just get out of the damn way and lower taxes…and don’t scare us with promises of future taxes, regulations, or criminalization of both failure and success.

joeindc44 on December 1, 2010 at 1:09 PM

..this includes the Maine Sisters and that Murtha Lebowski broad from AK, don’t it?

The War Planner on December 1, 2010 at 1:08 PM

Yes, plus the newest senator, Mark Kirk of IL, in the One’s old seat.

Tombstone Burris went back to Chicago to check that “United States Senator” had been engraved on his crypt.

Wethal on December 1, 2010 at 1:12 PM

Filibuster everything except budgets. No more progressive/socialist agenda items.

Not the party of NO, but the party of HELL NO.

petefrt on December 1, 2010 at 12:32 PM

+1

cmsinaz on December 1, 2010 at 1:16 PM

Tombstone Burris went back to Chicago to check that “United States Senator” had been engraved on his crypt.

Wethal on December 1, 2010 at 1:12 PM

heh

cmsinaz on December 1, 2010 at 1:17 PM

Waiting for them to cave in 5 … 4 … 3 … 2 …

tarpon on December 1, 2010 at 1:19 PM

they’re drinking as much champagne as they can find on the Titanic before it completely submerges.

That would be a great book title: Champagne on the Titanic

disa on December 1, 2010 at 1:20 PM

Politicians?.. Promises?.. In the same sentence?

*rolls eyes*

franksalterego on December 1, 2010 at 1:22 PM

Right. We won’t let gays and the majority of the US forget that the GOP decided to keep penalizing gays in the military just because the GOP decided to have a hissy fit. Losers. Let the tax cuts expire and blame the GOP.

Jimbo3 on December 1, 2010 at 12:21 PM

We won, Jimbo.

Chuck Schick on December 1, 2010 at 1:26 PM

Right. We won’t let gays and the majority of the US forget that the GOP decided to keep penalizing gays in the military just because the GOP decided to have a hissy fit. Losers. Let the tax cuts expire and blame the GOP.

Jimbo3 on December 1, 2010 at 12:21 PM
We won, Jimbo.

Chuck Schick on December 1, 2010 at 1:26 PM

You won back control of the House in January. Nothing more. This is one battle in a long (never ending) war.

Because that is the most important issue facing us.
/

Wake up.

Vashta.Nerada on December 1, 2010 at 12:30 PM

And the extension of unemployment benefits? Is not doing that class warfare by the GOP?

Jimbo3 on December 1, 2010 at 1:32 PM

Let the tax cuts expire and blame the GOP.

Jimbo3 on December 1, 2010 at 12:21 PM

Yeah, that’ll sell. Those darn tax-raisin’ Republicans!

DrSteve on December 1, 2010 at 1:42 PM

And the extension of unemployment benefits? Is not doing that class warfare by the GOP?

Jimbo3 on December 1, 2010 at 1:32 PM

The Democrats’ refusal to fund this with unspent stimulus is the sticking point. Why are they being so pigheaded about what is essentially just a change in the policy mix? Stimulus dollars for unemployed workers rather than stimulus dollars for e.g. slow-spending grantees?

DrSteve on December 1, 2010 at 1:44 PM

DrSteve on December 1, 2010 at 1:44 PM

You seem to be confused. Those still available Stimulus dollars are for Barry’s re-election campaign/

Knucklehead on December 1, 2010 at 1:51 PM

The GOP wants ALL tax rates to stay at their curent rate.

DOOF on December 1, 2010 at 1:05 PM

They could get 9/10th’s of what they want right now, no trouble at all. That they are willing to stop all other business to get that last 10th is what makes it seem as if their number one priority is lessening the social burden on the wealthiest first.

ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 1:51 PM

Good for the GOP! Don’t back down. The libtards simply do not know when to stop the NONSENSE.

dogsoldier on December 1, 2010 at 1:56 PM

No, but its one of the requirements of a functioning economy. My point is that the government’s responsibility towards the economy does not begin and end with the tax rates of the nation’s wealthiest. The current GOP leadership disagrees. That was my only point.

ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 12:51 PM

I agree.

The government’s responsibility towards the economy does however begin and end with providing stability and settling the tax rules for the near term goes a long way toward that responsibility.

Sinner on December 1, 2010 at 1:57 PM

DrSteve on December 1, 2010 at 1:44 PM

You are correct. The Dems are the ones who refused to fund it, not the GOP.

dogsoldier on December 1, 2010 at 1:58 PM

Hey Nevada, you voted for this idiot!

GarandFan on December 1, 2010 at 2:03 PM

ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 1:51 PM

That’s not what this is about. The wealthiest among us already pay confiscatory taxes. I for one do not want their taxes increased, because their taxes may one day be MY taxes.

There is nothing so addictive as other people’s money. You can quote me on that.

dogsoldier on December 1, 2010 at 2:05 PM

The merits of the tax rates are debatable, but making this agenda item numero uno basically turns the federal government, first and foremost, into an agent of the wealthiest.

ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 12:47 PM

“Agent of the wealthiest” my @$$. I am by no means wealthy, but my tax rate (along with that of all Americans) will go up in January if Congress does not act. If the Republicans can force the Democrats to agree to an extension of the current rates, they are acting on behalf of the entire nation.

steebo77 on December 1, 2010 at 2:14 PM

My worry is about amnesty more than tax cuts.

angryed on December 1, 2010 at 12:27 PM

Me, too. If tax hikes are dealt with, I fear some will expect a quid pro quo on the dream act and it will be jammed through on a middle-of-the-night-sneek vote.

LASue on December 1, 2010 at 2:16 PM

Governor Palin always in the fight….

From Facebook:

The Case for Extending All the Tax Cuts
.by Sarah Palin on Tuesday, November 30, 2010 at 7:16pm.

In “America By Heart” folks will get a feel for some of my favorite writers and thinkers. One of them is the great economist Thomas Sowell. Some of you may recall that in “Going Rogue” I mentioned Sowell’s famous book “A Conflict of Visions” to explain the way the liberal or “progressive” world view and philosophy differs from the conservative view. Sowell’s articles are always worth reading, and his most recent column is no exception. He reminds us where our attention needs to be during this lame-duck session of Congress. He notes that the Democrats have articulated their tired class warfare argument about “tax cuts for the rich,” but conservatives have still not articulated our proven time-tested argument that tax cuts spur economic growth, which in turn helps everyone from all income levels and increases tax revenue as the economy grows. Sowell reminds us:

“These are not new arguments on either side. They go back more than 80 years. Over that long span of time, there have been many sharp cuts in tax rates under presidents Calvin Coolidge, John F. Kennedy, Ronald Reagan, and George W. Bush. So we don’t need to argue in a vacuum. There is a track record.

“What does that record say? It says, loud and clear, that cuts in tax rates do not mean cuts in tax revenues. In all four of these administrations, of both parties, so-called “tax cuts for the rich” led to increased tax revenues — with people earning high incomes paying not only a larger sum total of tax revenues, but even a higher proportion of all tax revenues.

“Most important of all, these tax-rate reductions spurred economic activity, which we definitely need today.”

But as Sowell later points out, having a proven time-tested policy isn’t enough if we don’t articulate it. We need to remind people that tax cuts help everyone. And we should also remind the Democrats that many of the so-called “rich” they’re dismissing are our small business owners who account for 70% of all job creation in this country. At a time when we need job growth, we should not target job creators with tax hikes. Closing our deficit gap requires us to cut spending, but we also need to spur economic growth. With that in mind, the last thing we should do is hamper our economic innovators and entrepreneurs with excessive taxes, overly burdensome regulation, and more uncertainty. This is not a difficult argument to make. It’s common sense.

- Sarah Palin

SheetAnchor on December 1, 2010 at 2:22 PM

Hmmmmm. Maybe Mitch did catch the clue.

humdinger on December 1, 2010 at 2:34 PM

That’s not what this is about. The wealthiest among us already pay confiscatory taxes. I for one do not want their taxes increased, because their taxes may one day be MY taxes.

There is nothing so addictive as other people’s money. You can quote me on that.

dogsoldier on December 1, 2010 at 2:05 PM

The maximum marginal individual tax rate in the early 1960s was 91%. It dropped to 70% and then to 50% on earned income during the 1960s.

Jimbo3 on December 1, 2010 at 2:41 PM

taxes is one thing…also need to tackle the regulatory climate.

The administration and the DNC controlled 111th congress made too many laws that are onerous for small companies (and granting waivers to larger companies).

overregulation kills business growth

joeindc44 on December 1, 2010 at 2:55 PM

Indy82 on December 1, 2010 at 12:31 PM

Amnesty for illegal aliens “kids” in their 30′s.

An automatic 7-year stay (that is, they can’t be deported) for any illegal alien who files an amnesty application — even if the illegal alien is a convicted criminal, and even if he/she is not qualified (i.e., too old, never been a student, etc.) for amnesty under the bill.

Taxpayers subsidizing college/trade school educations for illegal aliens, as they will now be officially eligible for in-state tuition rates and federal education loans.

No requirement that the illegal alien “kids” actually have received decent grades in college or trade school, or that they have graduated from college or trade school, or that they have a job — just being enrolled in college (including community college) for 2 years, or trade school for one year, is enough to qualify for amnesty. (Plus, the bill includes the always popular “hardship exception” for those illegals who’re too stupid to stay enrolled in trade school for a year. We have to make sure no illegal alien gets left behind when the amnesty train leaves the station. Democrats need those votes!)

Once the illegal alien “kids” receive amnesty, they get to sponsor their immediate family members for legal residency. So the illegal aliens’ parents, the same people who decided, as adults, to deliberately violate U.S. immigration laws, get bumped ahead of would-be legal immigrants. Who says crime doesn’t pay? It sure does if you’re an illegal alien. Oh, and once those family members get their green cards, they’re entitled to sponsor other family members, and on and on and on.

But remember folks, the official Democratic line is that this amnesty is only for deserving illegal alien kids — those innocent, hard-working, high-achieving innocents who had no say in the decision to come here illegally. And what reasonable person could object to that?

AZCoyote on December 1, 2010 at 3:11 PM

People can’t create jobs without infrastructure.
ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 12:47 PM

__________________

Ernseto, hate to break your little bubble here but 2 years ago there were 14.8 million MORE people employed than there were at the end of October 2010.

I would suggest “infrastructure” has absolutely nothing to do with that (negative) 14.8 million number

alwyr on December 1, 2010 at 3:26 PM

People can’t create jobs without infrastructure.
ernesto on December 1, 2010 at 12:47 PM

Given a guaranteed low tax rate, and fixed regulation environment. Many companies will build, and maintain all the infrastructure that they need. Producing even more jobs.

Slowburn on December 1, 2010 at 5:02 PM

The maximum marginal individual tax rate in the early 1960s was 91%. It dropped to 70% and then to 50% on earned income during the 1960s.

Jimbo3 on December 1, 2010 at 2:41 PM

From what I’ve read, that rate applied to those earning $400k or more, which is almost $3 million in today’s dollars, and all interest payments were deductible, including credit card interest.

LASue on December 1, 2010 at 5:06 PM

Good !
the time of congress splitting us up and deviding the “poor” against the rich is OVAH !!!!
and the Republicans better put the R (responsible) in the R after their name.

ColdWarrior57 on December 1, 2010 at 7:27 PM

making this agenda item numero uno basically turns the federal government, first and foremost, into an agent of the wealthiest.

ernesto

And this post of yours, like many before it, makes you an agent of ignorance.

xblade on December 1, 2010 at 8:05 PM