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View Diary: Unions to air ads pushing tax increase on the wealthiest (27 comments)

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  •  This seems completely unrealistic to me (1+ / 0-)
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    VClib

    The so-called "fiscal cliff" was put in place so as to guarantee that there would be serious deficit reduction the last time that the debt ceiling needed to be raised.  It was a compromise then, where Democrats signed on to the position that there needed to be serious deficit reduction.

    "It can only be done by creating jobs, making the rich and corporations pay their fair share and protecting the middle class from a tax hike and cuts to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and education."
    What this asks Democrats to do is to go back on that deal that they made last time, and to take the position now that there is no need for serious deficit reduction.  And it would require that the President repudiate the platform he ran on -- a "balanced" approach to reducing the deficit -- that includes both tax increases on the wealthy AND significant spending cuts:  
    Number four, I want to reduce our deficit. It’s got to be done in a balanced way. I’ve already cut a trillion dollars’ worth of spending. I’m willing to do more. I’m willing to cut more, and I’m willing to work with Democrats and Republicans when it comes to making some adjustments that bring down the cost of our health care programs, which obviously are the biggest drivers of our deficit.

    But nobody who looks at the numbers thinks it’s realistic for us to actually reduce our deficit in a serious way without also having some revenue. And we’ve identified tax rates going up to the Clinton rates for income above $250,000; making some adjustments in terms of the corporate tax side that could actually bring down the corporate tax overall, but broaden the base and close some loopholes. That would be good for our economy, and it would be good for reducing our deficit.

    A deal with Republicans where ALL that happens is tax increases on the top 2.5% (about $800 billion over 10 years) with NO serious cuts to spending is not going to happen.  And. frankly, if the Republicans give in on the demand for tax increases in exchange for the cuts that the President put on the table last time, I don't think the public is going to blame the Republicans if no deal happens.  

    Now, it may be that you think that the so-called "fiscal cliff" is better than what the President called "a balanced approach."  That's fine.  But it's completely, completely unrealistic to think that the Republicans will ever (now, or this spring) agree to those tax hikes, which would be a serious compromise for them, without an equal compromise on the part of the Democrats, i.e., the kinds of spending cuts the President proposed last year -- his "balanced approach."    

    I know that some people would like to think that somehow Speaker Boehner is going to agree to tax hikes on the top 2.5%, and nothing else, in exchange for   getting past the "fiscal cliff" (whether now or after January 1) AND the next raising of the debt ceiling, which I think happens in January or February.  And I'd like to win the lottery.  That has about as much chance of happening.  

    The only way a deal gets done is for BOTH sides to compromise.  And if the Republicans say they are willing to compromise and Democrats say, "No compromise, we just expect the House Republicans to give up" I don't think the public is going to keep blaming the House Republicans.  And even if they did, I don't think the House Republicans will care -- most of them fear a primary from the right much more than they fear a general election.  

    I understand what people want to happen.  But I don't think it's helpful for people to keep putting out there these unrealistic scenarios.  Then, when the President DOES agree to something like the kind of cuts he put on the table in 2011, what are people here going to say?

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