The GOP is swimming in a sewer: Foley, a floundering war, a spate of hit-books published to effect the election, a base that no longer trusts it on border security, spending and a few other things make this a nasty-looking mid-term election. But the Democrats have ridden to the rescue, putting tax increases back on the agenda. And the GOP is going to make sure the voters know it:

Republicans grinned from ear to ear last month when the ranking Democrat on the House Ways and Means Committee, New York Rep. Charles B. Rangel, just about guaranteed tax increases if his party takes over the House after Nov. 7. Asked whether Democrats would consider raising taxes across the whole spectrum of income, Mr. Rangel said, “No question about it.”

Some Republicans say Mr. Rangel and his party will soon regret those words.

The WashTimes hightlights several GOP campaigns that are flogging the tax issue hard, and I think this has a pretty good chance of making a dent in the polls. Charging Democrats with wanting to raise taxes has the benefit of being true, and Republicans can just trot that Rangel quote out to prove it. Doing so might even divide the Democrats over the tax issue if the GOP hits it often enough. And voters ultimately vote their pocketbooks, and as irritated as many of us are at the Republicans, the thought of anti-war Charlie Rangel getting in there and on the one hand defunding the war in Iraq while on the other hand raising my taxes to fund liberal pet causes instead of the war, or better border security or anything else that’s actually useful is downright nauseating.