Saturday, October 6, 2012

Would a Republican candidate lie about taxes?

Would a Republican candidate for president just lie about his tax policy? Well, it's not the first time that happened.

Here's an article by Jonathan Chait in New York magazine showing what happened twelve years ago:
It’s worth considering a similar — in many ways, identical — episode that took place a dozen years before. During the 2000 election, the growth of a budget surplus offered the country a major choice. Al Gore proposed to use most of the surplus to retire the national debt and the balance for public investment. George W. Bush proposed a large, regressive income tax that Gore warned would exacerbate inequality and jeopardize the soundness of the budget.

Then, as now, the Republican simply denied over and over that his plan would do what the Democrats said it would. Bush portrayed his plan as devoting just a small fraction of the surplus to tax cuts and described his tax cut itself as benefitting the poor far more than the rich. ...

But Bush in fact followed through on what his plan actually did, which happened to be what Gore described it as, and not what Bush described it as. His promises to maintain the budget surplus and direct most of the tax cuts to lower-earners fell by the wayside. What mattered was the party, and the Republican Party was committed to a policy of regressive tax cuts.

And note that Mitt Romney is proposing specific tax cuts to take place immediately, while he's being extraordinarily vague - even secretive - about how he plans to keep that from benefiting only the wealthy and increasing the federal deficit even more than George W. Bush did.

We're supposed to just trust him on that. Yeah, like we trusted the Republican Party under George W. Bush, huh? That turned out so well, didn't it?

In the article, Chait quotes Bush in all three presidential debates. Bush was actually more specific than Mitt Romney (not that you could be any less specific). It was just a lie. He cut taxes overwhelmingly for the rich, it ballooned the budget deficit, and it hugely increased income inequality.

He got the middle class to vote for him, then turned around and crapped on them. Well, that's a specialty of the GOP, isn't it?

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