Campaigning on Tax Increases II The Republicans.

Robert Waldmann

Kevin Drum writes
“The GOP leadership has released “Tread Boldly,” a guidebook for Republican members of congress during the summer recess, and it includes a whole section called “Spending Restraint Solutions for Discussion.” Finally, we’ll get some details! So here they are:

‘Canceling unspent “stimulus” funds, saving up to $266 billion …’

Being hep and up to date with the interwebs, the Republicans posted a pdf.

My point is that they just declared their willingness to increase the taxes paid by over 95% of working US families. There is no way they can get “up to $266 billion” by cancelling other parts of the stimulus and not cancelling the tax cuts.

Notably “of the $787 billion in the Recovery Act, about 94% is either in tax cuts, payments, or projects under contract. “ Are the Republicans proposing that the Federal Government violate signed contracts ? Wouldn’t that be a seizure ?

The payments include extended unemployment insurance (I’m not sure that’s the only payment). Total additional government consumption (the standard word for government investment too) was $ 265 billion, so one can’t save $266 billion by cutting the un-contracted funds (about $ 50 billion).

Of course the Republicans would like nothing less than to have to explain that the ARRA included tax cuts for over 95% of working families in the USA and to explain that they want to eliminate those cuts (as all currently Republican legislators not from Maine voted against those tax cuts).

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