When Republicans maintain a no-tax-hike position, good things happen. We saw this in 2010 when Senate GOPers held firm and Obama was forced to extend for two years all of the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts.
This approach is paying dividends, as you can see from these excerpts from a report by The Hill.
At least seven Democratic senators have declined to rule out supporting a temporary extension of the Bush-era income tax rates, breaking with party leaders who have called for letting the rates expire for people earning more than $1 million per year. That gives Senate Republicans a chance to push a temporary extension similar to the deal Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) struck with President Obama in December of 2010. …Extending all income tax rates for only one year would undercut the Democratic leadership’s plan to use their imminent expiration as leverage to move Republicans to accept some tax increases.
The article also notes that many of these Democrats are willing to support higher tax rates, but only if they seduce gullible Republicans into providing political cover by also saying yes.
I touch on some of these issues in this CNBC debate with Stan Collender. We both agree that America faces short-term and long-term fiscal challenges, but a key difference is that Stan wants higher taxes to facilitate a bigger burden of government spending.
From a viewer perspective, I think this was a very good interview. Stan and I both had an opportunity to get our points across. Neither one of us tried to hog all the air time. And we both pointed out areas of disagreement. When I compare this debate to the one I posted last week, there’s no comparison.
That being said, I hope what I said was more persuasive, particularly my points about the long-term entitlement problem, the unfortunate impact of too many people being exempt from the income tax, the fact that America doesn’t suffer from inadequate taxation, the role of Bush’s reckless big-government fiscal policy, and the fact that higher taxes lead to more spending rather than lower deficits. I even got to cite Estonia’s successful spending cuts.