Congressman Guinta’s Politics Are What Are Gridlocking Congress

Butch Cassidy and Sundance Kid Cliff Jump

Do you want to know why our Congress is gridlocked?  It is because of people like (soon to be former) Congressman Guinta.  In conversation about the possibility of increasing taxes on the people who make $250,000 or more,  he told the NH Union Leader

“I cannot see a scenario where I vote to raise rates”

Really Congressman, there is no senario where you would raise taxes?  The is the TEA Party mentality that has gridlocked our Congress for two years now.   This could also be why Congressman Guinta will not be returning to Washington DC in January.

At least Congressman Bass is willing to consider the idea (though his is not likely to support it).  He signed a letter to fellow members stating that

“all options for mandatory and discretionary spending and revenues must be on the table.”

Congressman Guinta is trying (poorly) to turn this back on the President.

“Shame that the President has positioned this as raising taxes on a certain class of people rather than talking about cutting taxes for the middle class.”

The problem that Congressman Guinta does not seem to understand is that we are talking about taxes on the ‘middle class’.  If we go over the so called ‘fiscal cliff’ then the middle class would see an increase in their taxes by $2000 dollars.

Even seven term Congressman Bass can see the writing on the wall.  The President wants the Republicans to agree to the tax cuts for the middle class and increases on the wealthy. If the House Republicans do not agree Bass knows what will happen.

“the alternative is have everybody’s taxes go up and then the President comes back in late January and says, ‘I’m going to offer the American people the biggest tax cut in American history,’ and it’s going to be exactly the tax cut he wants (for the middle class) now.”

Personally I am not in favor of this idea (though it would be as effective) and here is why. If we let the tax cuts expire and the push a tax cut for the middle class then all of the Norquist Pledge zombies can still walk around saying ‘I did not agree to a tax increase and stand by my pledge.’  No I want to see them actually WORK TOGETHER with the Democrats and make something happen.

The only people who are not willing to compromise are these TEA Party / Norquist Pledge Republicans who oppose any tax increase no matter what cuts come with them.  This is wrong!  I hope we see a deal before the end of the year, but I want the President to stand firm on his 2% tax hike.  Even if that means I have to jump of the imaginary, completely fabricated, fiscal cliff.

Looking Over the Fiscal Cliff

Tax Receipts 1952-2012

Congress returns to Washington DC today – but “fiscal cliff” negotiations aren’t expected to resume until next week.

The delay may allow Congressional GOP leaders to bring a different position to the bargaining table.

Immediately following Election Day, GOP leadership seemed stuck in their “no new taxes” campaign rhetoric.

Since then, several prominent Republicans have questioned the wisdom of sticking with Grover Norquist’s infamous “pledge”.

Over the decades, Norquist’s “pledge” has not been a fiscally-conservative position.  It works like a ratchet wrench: things can only go in one direction; taxes can only go down.  And taxes have gone down – considerably – since Norquist started agitating.

Right now, the federal tax burden – tax revenues as a percentage of the economy – is at one of the lowest points in modern history.

Much of the decline was caused by cuts to corporate taxes.

Next week’s “fiscal cliff” negotiations need to be framed by this reality.  Particularly in a down economy, Congress can’t just cut its way to a balanced federal budget.  (They have tried that in Europe; it’s not solving anything.)

America’s working families know that you can’t balance the budget if revenues keep declining.  We’ve tried to keep our own books balanced despite declining wages.  Too many families have ended up doing just what the federal government has done: borrow money to make ends meet.  And that doesn’t work out very well, over the long term.

As the “fiscal cliff” negotiations continue, keep an eye on your Social Security and Medicare benefits.  It’s just like what happened with the NH Retirement System: the politicians want to cut our benefits, after we spent decades paying into the system.

Right now, even the politicians who are forswearing Norquist’s “pledge” are insisting on “entitlement reforms” in exchange for “new revenue”.  But that’s a false choice.  They are simply trading one way of ratcheting-down taxes for another.

Returning tax revenues to their previous (pre-Norquist) levels would go a long, long way toward solving our country’s debt crisis.

 

[Tax revenues shown above do not include Social Security, Medicare or other retirement program revenues.  Data is from Table 2.3 of http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/omb/budget/fy2013/assets/hist.pdf.]

NHLN Election News 8/20: Cilley Creates National Buzz, Correcting The Lies Around Medicare, Paul Ryan, NH Primary, and more

Tax rate Romney v teacher

Election Coverage

Jackie Cilley creates a national buzz over her new ad about Pledge Politics.  See the video story from WMUR.

Polls show that most candidates are unknown. (AP)

The primary will come down to name recognition. (Concord Monitor)

LTE: Resident upset about Romney mis-quoting President Obama on “you did not build that”

LTE: Both sides are happy with Paul Ryan as VP selection

Rep. Paul Ryan will be at Saint Anslelm’s College today to talk about Medicare. (AP)

Truth and lies about Medicare, NYT
“Republican attacks on President Obama’s plans for Medicare are growing more heated and inaccurate by the day. Both Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan made statements last week implying that the Affordable Care Act would eviscerate Medicare when in fact the law should shore up the program’s finances.”

 

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The Americans For Prosperity Are Back Pushing Right to Work for Less In NH.

After all we went through this last two years I thought we were done talking about Right To Work.  Well I guess I was wrong.  Now it has even become a part of the Americans For Prosperity Pledge.  Well it is not like anyone takes this “pledge” thing serious right?

Wrong! On the first day that AFP published the 2012  pledge many people were standing line to sign it.
 Among the big names who signed the 2012 “Tax and Right To Work pledge” were
Ovide Lamontagne.  Candidate for New Hampshire Governor.

Ovide is well known in New Hampshire as a TEA Party extremist. He has been pushing Right To Work for less in New Hampshire for the last few years along with his friend, NH Speaker Bill O’Brien.   O’Brien was also there to sign the pledge.

Speaker O’Brien has already vowed to bring Right To Work back again next year.  Right to Work was one of the biggest holes in his TEA Party agenda.   Even with the help of the Cornerstone Action group.  Cornerstone, a TEA Party extremist group pushed for Right to Work laws along with a handfull of other anti-worker, anti-women, and anti-homosexual legislations.   Cornerstone was lead by now NH Governor candidate Kevin Smith, who also signed the pledge?

So as the election gets closer and close be sure to watch the AFP website to see who has publicly signed the pledge?   But why wait until November to take action against Right To Work.  The NH AFL-CIO has started an “Ovide Watch” to keep you up to date on Ovide Lamontagne’s actions as he campaigns throughout NH.  Remember it was Ovide Lamontagne who sid that he would be “Scott Walker On Steroids”.  We cannot allow Ovide or any of these AFP/ TEA Party extremist back into our State Legislature and definitely not in the Governor’s seat.  So sign up now and help keep New Hampshire, a free bargaining state and keep RTW for less laws out.