Grover Norquist Pledge: Preventing Solution to Budget Crisis?

July 19, 2012 James Heinsman Quote of the Day

Grover Norquist

Grover Norquist has been the head of Americans for Tax Reform since 1986. By the end of 2011 238 out of 242 Republican representatives in the House and 41 out of 47 Senate Republicans signed what is known as the Norquist Pledge. Today over 270 congressman have signed the pledge, which obligates (non-legally) those who sign to

”oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rate for individuals and business; and to oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates."

Critics of the pledge such as Florida Governor and Republican Jeb Bush oppose it because “it asks politicians to 'outsource [their] principles and convictions."

The critical issue today is the Bush-era tax cuts, which were across the board for poor, middle class and wealthy. These tax cuts are about to expire, and President Obama and his fellow Democrats would like to see the cuts extended to all taxpayers with the exception of those earning over $250,000 annually. Because of the pledge Republicans feel they can’t compromise and vote with the Democrats, and therefore a tax hike may go into effect despite the fact that no one wants it, Republicans least of all.

According to CBS News:

“As head of Americans for Tax Reform since 1986, Grover Norquist has transformed a single issue – preventing tax hikes – into one of the key platforms of the Republican Party. As Steve Kroft reports, his biggest coup was getting more than 270 members of Congress, and nearly all of the 2012 Republican presidential primary candidates, to sign a pledge promising never to vote to raise taxes. But some opponents say the pledge may be hindering a solution to America's debt crisis.”
 

Bush Era Tax Cuts, Debt Crisis, Grover Nordquist, Jeb Bush,

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