Negotiating on the fiscal cliff should not include tax increases
Earlier this week, Speaker Boehner sounded like a fiscal conservative when he called out President Obama for his hypocritical statements on the fiscal cliff and spending overhauls. Unfortunately, the Speaker’s negotiating positions do not match his rhetoric.
In Washington, even the rare good politicians are supporting tax increases. Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK), who is possibly the most serious politician in Washington on national debt, has said tax increases are bad for our economy and won’t solve the debt problem. He is right. Yet the Senator is supporting tax increases in order to get supporters of big government on board with reforms to overall spending and entitlements.
We understand and appreciate Senator Coburn’s grave concern for the debt. We agree with him and the Tuesday version of Speaker Boehner telling us America is broke. We agree entitlement reform is the most critical factor to the long-term financial success of America. However, Tea Party Patriots will continue to oppose tax increases for several reasons:
- America has a spending problem, not a revenue problem. Raising taxes on the wealthy, for example, as the President wishes, would raise 1.88% or less of the next decade’s expected spending.
- Taxes should only be high enough to cover what the government should spend, not what it wants to spend. Washington has spent what it feels entitled to spend for decades, which is fiscally disastrous. This reckless practice of Washington should not, justify taking more from the American people.
- Presidents Reagan and H.W. Bush raised taxes as a compromise for spending cuts. Unfortunately, the spending cuts never materialized, and the tax increases did. For Senator Coburn and Speaker Boehner to negotiate on tax increases for spending cuts is to ignore recent history. Which is especially unwise to do when dealing with the Administration that has spent the most of any Administration in American history.
- It is the principle of Tea Party Patriots that tax increases are wrong, and spending reform is the solution. Admittedly, as Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) said in Tea Party Patriots recent Local Coordinator Conference in Washington, compromise may be necessary, but compromise that violates one’s principles is no compromise worth having. A good compromise is one that moves the proverbial ball in the direction one wants to go in, not sideways or backwards.
Tea Party Patriots stands ready to support those who stand with the American people in pushing for tax reform and spending cuts, regardless of party. It is our civic duty, however, to oppose both opponents and allies equally when they are wrong – and raising taxes is always wrong.