As noted yesterday, House Republicans have laid out their counter-proposal to the White House as negotiations continue on the so-called “fiscal cliff.” While GOP leadership seems pretty darn impressed with their plan to raise taxes by $800 billion, Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) has come out strongly against it:
The comments from DeMint, co-founder of the Senate’s anti- tax Tea Party caucus, represent a strong indictment of Boehner’s plan from a fellow Republican lawmaker and highlight a divide within the party. Boehner yesterday proposed a $2.2 trillion deficit-cutting proposal that seeks $800 billion in revenue in the next decade from an overhaul of the tax code that would curb some breaks.
“Speaker Boehner’s $800 billion tax hike will destroy American jobs and allow politicians in Washington to spend even more, while not reducing our $16 trillion debt by a single penny,” DeMint said in a statement. “Republicans must oppose tax increases and insist on real spending reductions that shrink the size of government and allow Americans to keep more of their hard-earned money.”
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), who literally laughed off the White House’s proposal last week, was apparently hesitant to endorse what was presented by his colleages in the House. When asked about the proposal yesterday by reporters, McConnell said, “I have no particular observation other than I commend Republican leadership for trying to move the process forward.” McConnell, however, has indicated that he’s willing to limit deductions and other loopholes.
DeMint is right. We cannot create prosperity by raising taxes. Boehner is holding out hope that he’ll get tax reform out of the deal, but does anyone really think that a deal made with the White House will bring economic growth? Unfortunately, it seems that House GOP leadership is looking for any bone that will give them an excuse to make a deal. Before this thing is resolved, either by the end of the year or during the next Congress, they will sell out.