Not raising taxes on the middle class was one of Obama’s signature pledges. In fact, let’s go back and review it:
“I can make a firm pledge,” he said in Dover, N.H., on Sept. 12. “Under my plan, no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase. Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes.”
And Obama repeatedly claimed to the cheering crowds that if he was elected their taxes wouldn’t go up a single dime.
In point of fact, during the presidential campaign, Barack Obama repeatedly attacked Hillary Clinton for supporting the same sort of mandates he wants to impose on the American people now. He even ran a huge ad campaign demonizing her for doing the very thing he is now doing.
Remember George H.W. Bush’s now famous pledge, “Read my lips, no new taxes?” Congressional Democrats who controlled the House and Senate forced Bush the elder to raise taxes – and then demagogued him for having raised them. In the case of Barack Obama, no rival party is manipulating him; he’s breaking his promises all on his own.
Senate Republicans pointed out yesterday that Democrat health plans would make Obama’s promise to the American people a cynically deceptive and incredibly manipulative lie:
John ensign (R-NV), Senate Finance Committee: “[Obama] said, ‘But let me be perfectly clear: if your family earns less than $250,000 a year, you will not see your taxes increase a single dime.’”
Mike Crapo (R-ID), Senate Finance Committee: “If we can’t do health care reform without taxing people in the middle class – and the lower income categories – then we’ve got the wrong plan in front of us.
Republicans pointed to several tax provisions – one clearly labeled an ‘excise tax’ in Sen. Baucus’ plan – would fine a family as much as $1,900 if it didn’t buy health insurance. And if one failed to pay the tax, the IRS would take more even more drastic action:
Sen. Ensign: “We heard that the other day. The effect is, up to a $25,000 fine and one year in jail.”
One blogger backs up the tax increases in the Democrats’ plan by citing their own bill:
All the Democrat bills include tax penalties, administered through the Internal Revenue Service, for individuals and families who do not purchase “government-approved” coverage. Page 29 of the Baucus bill would subject families with incomes higher than three times poverty to an “excise tax” of up to $3,800 per year. Likewise, page 167 of the introduced version of House Democrats’ government takeover of care (H.R. 3200) includes the following language:“There is hereby imposed a tax” on individuals who do not purchase “government-approved” insurance-and neither the House nor the Senate bills exempt those with incomes under $250,000 from the penalties. How is what the legislation plainly calls a new tax on all Americans not purchasing “government-approved” insurance not a tax increase on the middle class?
So Republicans, serving as the guardians of the president’s pledge on taxes (and who ELSE is serving as guardians of the presidents’ pledges on anything?), offered amendments to exempt most taxpayers.
Sen. Crapo: “It will remove all taxes,fees, and penalties from the bill that apply to families earning less than $250,000 per year.”
The Democrats have chosen to embark upon an incredibly deceitful and false assertion that what is clearly a tax someone isn’t a tax. Give it up; it’s a TAX (see this also). And in fact it is a tax with penalties imposed by the iron-gloved hand of your ever-friendly and compassionate Internal Revenue Service. BECAUSE IT’S A DAMN TAX.
And in point of fact both taxes that the Senate Finance Committee is debating would fall heavily on those who make less than that magical $250,000 a year. According to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, for instance, 71% of those families facing the tax for refusing to buy health insurance make less than $110,000 a year. The change in deductibility would hit most heavily at even lower incomes.
Democrats didn’t dispute the impact of the taxes, but rather – and amazingly – simply accused Republicans of simply making political points:
Sen Max Baucus (D-MT), Chairman, Senate Finance Committee: “Basically what you’re saying is you want to, you want to gut the president’s program. More than that, you want to gut health reform.”
It’s an interesting – and yet all too typical – tactic from the Democrats. They’re liars. They have broken their word to the American people. They got themselves elected by making one false promise on top of another. But Republicans are the ones to blame, because Democrats have put on their “Carnac the Magnificent” hats and read the hearts and minds of Republicans’ motives in exposing the Democrats’ lies.
The fact is, the Democrat’s reform efforts depend on getting more healthier young people, for instance, to buy insurance and spread the risk. And Sen. Baucus didn’t apologize for forcing them to do so:
“If we’re serious about making sure that Americans have health insurance, we have to have shared responsibility. We all have to participate.”
And outside the committee, Democrat Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) suggested there is very likely no way around higher taxes:
“I’m prepared to go to my constituents and tell them there are tough choices to be made.”
Maybe Ron Wyden is prepared to force millions of people to pay high taxes that Barack Obama promised them that they would never have to pay, but what about the people who are going to now have to pay those taxes?
This is a question of lack of honesty, or lack of competence: were Democrats so clearly incompetent that they truly didn’t know that they wouldn’t be able to cover 45 million more people for less money? Did they truly believe that their promises not to raise taxes on the middle class could even possibly be fulfilled given their massive government spending?
But that’s okay. Because they’re going to make you pay for their broken promises.
The amendments to halt any tax increase failed by only one vote – with, of course, only Democrats voting against it. Their vote is a cynical admission that the Democrats are dishonest thieves who will lie to your face about being on your side even as they prepare to rob you blind. Just the two provisions debated yesterday would raise taxes by over $35 billion over ten years. And yes, people making under $250,000 would be forced to pay higher taxes – in spite of President Obama’s word to the American people.
If you thought Republicans were bad, Democrats are proving that they are the worst kind of dishonest, arrogant, and cynical hypocrites imaginable. The Party that self-righteously proclaimed its “transparency” have voted against amendments that required them to read the bills they pass – and even mocked bothering to read such bills, and then said there’s no point to bothering to read the bills they vote on. If it’s bad enough that Democrats won’t bother to read their own damn bills, they now refuse to allow YOU a chance to read them either, essentially claiming that you are too stupid to understand them. Moreover, Democrats have ave voted against even bothering to require that bills even be written before they are voted upon.
It’s long past (and I mean two years of false campaign promises in addition to the last nine months past) holding Democrats accountable to their past promises and demanding that they live up to their rhetoric. And if they can’t pass their legislation without breaking their campaign promises, then they are offering false and depraved legislation that should never be allowed to pass.
Tags: $110000, $1900, $25000, $250000, Baucus, deceitful, dishonest, excise tax, Finance Committee, fine, George H.W. Bush, IRS, lies, middle-class, no new taxes, Obama, poor, Read my lips, read the bill, single dime, taxes