01.07.2013 0

Republicans have to be All-In on Cutting Deficit

Our National DebtBy Rick Manning — Democrat political operatives are already sharpening their pencils to spin the fiscal cliff vote against Republicans who voted against it by claiming that they voted against a massive tax cut for the middle class.

Hoping that no one will notice that their net pay will be less in 2013 because the two year tax holiday on payments into Social Security ended when the ball dropped ushering in the New Year, Democrats will try to take advantage of calendar sleight of hand to claim they actually cut taxes.

Here is how it works.

The Bush tax cuts, which virtually every Democrat voted against when they were enacted in 2001 and 2003, expired at the stroke of midnight on December 31, 2012.  Congress passed and Obama signed legislation raising the income tax on some Americans but putting many of those tax rates that Democrats have raged against for years back into the law.  Now claiming ownership of this as a new tax cut since technically the Clinton era tax rates on the middle class were in effect for three days, Dems are licking their chops to attack their Republican colleagues.

What they won’t tell anyone is that Republicans passed legislation earlier in the year to keep those middle class tax cuts that Democrats rejected in the Senate.

What they won’t tell anyone is that the fiscal cliff legislation included more spending increases than the income tax increase included in it could cover with special goodies for Hollywood, NASCAR and the Wind Energy Industrial Complex to name just a few.

What they won’t tell anyone is that Harry Reid and Obama both publicly rejected an offer from John Boehner to raise taxes, keep the rest of the Bush tax cuts, but include some marginal spending cuts as well.

On the other hand, Republicans who voted for the fiscal cliff bill will be attacked by Democrats for having broken the pledge ala President George H.W. Bush in 1990 on the tax issue.

These attacks will be aimed at libertarian and tea party leaning voters with the goal of suppressing the vote for the Republican and driving votes to third party candidates.

Now for the ironic part.

While Republican face a classic damned if you do and damned if you don’t scenario, their only exit strategy is to behave like the limited government elected officials who they promised voters they were going to be, and actually cut government spending and the deficit.

They will get multiple chances in the upcoming months between the debt ceiling being topped next month, and the funding for the government running out and the mandatory sequestration budget cuts taking place in the spring.

It will be intriguing to see if they are up to the task, or if they will hand the gavel over to Nancy Pelosi in 2015?

After all, who really wants to vote for the party of a little less government than the other guys?

Rick Manning (@rmanning957) is the Communications Director of Americans for Limited Government. 

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