TaxProf Blog

Editor: Paul L. Caron, Dean
Pepperdine University School of Law

Monday, July 23, 2012

Bartlett: Will Defense Cuts Kill the Anti-Tax Pledge?

The Fiscal Times:  Will Defense Cuts Kill the Anti-Tax Pledge?, by Bruce Bartlett:

Republicans are between the rock of defense cuts that they view as unpalatable and the tax pledge hard place. There is no doubt that Democrats would agree to a tax increase to offset the defense sequester, but would oppose any other alternative except, perhaps, putting off the entire sequester, including domestic spending cuts, for a year. It’s doubtful that the GOP’s Tea Party wing would support that.

Republicans are not yet ready to embrace a tax increase even to prevent defense cuts. But it is clear that they are ultimately going to have to choose one or the other.

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No, it's not clear that the Republicans will be the ones making a choice. The Democrats are putting the nation at risk with its political games. Republicans should remember that the Democrats forced George H.W. Bush to accept new taxes after his read my lips pledge and then what happened to him. Don't fall for that ploy again and force the Democrats to be the ones to defend their games and the effect on our defense preparedness.

Posted by: Woody | Jul 23, 2012 11:41:02 AM

Paul, today we've been showered with tax articles from The NYT, The Tax Justice Network, and Bruce Bartlet. Have you not been able to find anything from David Cay Johnston yet?

Posted by: Woody | Jul 23, 2012 11:43:42 AM

Wait, Paul! Here's a "three-fer" -- David Cay Johnston, Romney's taxes, and untaxed money offshore. David even sneaks in that Obama got Osama bin Laden. (But, Obama didn't do that by himself. He used government roads and bridges.) -- The ED Show - Why is Romney investing overseas?

Posted by: Woody | Jul 23, 2012 11:56:03 AM

Why is it clear that they'll have to raise taxes? They've been running a deficit almost every year since WWII. I think they're much more politically at risk from tax hikes than continued deficit spending. This seems like wishful thinking.

The tax pledge only has power because it has so much salience with the public. If you don't like the tax pledge, then your problem is with voters. A lot of voters don't really want cuts, but tons of voters hate paying more taxes.

Posted by: NL_ | Jul 24, 2012 7:16:53 AM