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Republicans Won't Budge on Taxes. Again.


By John Martin - Posted on 10 October 2011

The Budget Supercommittee was a good idea-- in theory at least. Put a handful of legislators in a room, away from public scrutiny and let them reach a grand compromise on reducing our enormous budget deficit. In practice, it's turning out to be the same old.

Just as the President offered Republicans a 3-1 spending-cut-to-revenue-increase deal over the summer, only to be shot down, Republicans on the Supercommittee are refusing to move on the issue of tax increases yet again:

After weeks of secret meetings, the 12-member deficit-cutting panel established under last summer's budget and debt deal appears no closer to a breakthrough than when talks began last month.
 
While the panel members themselves aren't doing much talking, other lawmakers, aides and lobbyists closely tracking the committee are increasingly skeptical, even pessimistic, that the panel will be able to meet its assigned goal of at least $1.2 trillion in deficit savings over the next 10 years.
 
The reason? A familiar deadlock over taxes and cuts to major programs like Medicare and the Medicaid health care program for the poor and disabled.
 
Democrats won't go for an agreement that doesn't include lots of new tax revenue; Republicans are just as ardently anti-tax. The impasse over revenues means that Democrats won't agree to cost curbs on popular entitlement programs like Medicare.
 
In other words, the Democrats would agree to cuts in entitlements (which are needed), if Republicans would agree to revenue increases. This is a rare chance for Republicans to address the budget problems they're convinced are stifling the economy. Even the Maestro thinks it's time to start talking revenues. Simply put, the Republicans in Congress prefer inaction to upsetting a few billionaires. The end result is the rest of us lose. 

One of the committee members stated before they ever scheduled a meeting, that he would not vote for anything that included a tax hike.  I thought then..."So much for compromise".  Again. 

Well, I hope he doesn't mind defense cuts which will be automatic if no deal is reached. My guess is they will STILL choose protecting the millionaires from tax cuts even over our military spending. So sad. This is beyond dysfunction and into insane territory. What baffles me is that many expect Republicans to take over the Senate in 2012. Please tell me who trusts them to do a single thing to address jobs? Protect the middle class? Maybe they predict big victories because of all the voter ID laws which will keep voters away from the polls??

"The Budget Supercommittee was a good idea-- in theory at least." Unless you are really naive this wasn't a good idea - even in theory. Chris

Kelly, it's hype, the hard right predicted Bill Clinton would lose to Bush senior when he ran for President.  Despite a tarnished image at the end of 8 years, President Clinton left the countries books in black ink.  What we see now is a hard radical right trying to preserve the exalted status the Richest among us have been granted.  Nothing will surprise me this election season.

There has been some fear on the progressive side that Democrats would cave into some entitlement cuts for a future tax revenue increase that would in all likelihood never come.  If the Democrats do this; they've lost completely.  I hope they continue to hold strongly against this.

As Bill Maher said the other night on his show: "The American people are waking up to realize just who it is that is ****ing them." He was, of course, referring to the GOP.

 

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