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Norquist Pledge Losing Steam?


By John Martin - Posted on 13 June 2012

For the second time in a week, a prominent Republican has come out publicly to renounce the Grover Norquist pledge.

Yesterday, Senator Lindsey Graham said he believed that tax loopholes should be closed and used to pay down the debt, at least in part. Under the Norquist pledge, signers commit themselves to oppose any tax increase that would not be met "dollar for dollar" with another tax cut.
 
"When you eliminate a deduction, it's OK with me to use some of that money to get us out of debt. That's where I disagree with the pledge," Graham told Jonathan Karl of ABC News.
 
Under Graham's proposal, every $4 in spending cuts would be paired with $1 in tax increases. During a Republican presidential debate last August, every candidate said that he/she would reject a proposal to trade $10 in spending cuts for even $1 in tax increases.
 
"I just think that makes a lot of sense. And if I'm willing to do that as a Republican, I've crossed a rubicon," said Graham. "We're so far in debt, that if you don't give up some ideological ground, the country sinks." 
 
"When you talk about eliminating deductions and tax credits for the few, at the expense of the many, I think over time the Republican Party's position is going to shift. It needs to, quite frankly, because we are $16 trillion in debt," he said.

If it wasn't an election Graham would not say what he did. If this was December 2012 or January 2013. He would demand no tax increase what so ever.

Well, if he were facing a Republican primary (which he won't now until 2014), he wouldn't dare suggest raising taxes.

I wonder if he comments were at all intended to give Romney room to move in that direction for the presidential race. It's possible.

 

I still can't believe how much power Norquist has. If Republicans truly cared about fiscal restraint and the deficit, they would have kicked this guy to curb long ago. Anyone with half a brain knows that our debt crisis can't be solved through cuts alone. They aren't dumb-just stubborn.

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