As the middle class continues to suffer, another Washington showdown has begun.
Last week, John Boehner made a statement in which he advised the Super Committee to keep taxes off the negotiating table, “it’s a very simple equation,” Boehner said, speaking to the Economic Club of Washington,”tax increases destroy jobs. And the Joint Committee is a jobs committee. Its mission is to reduce the deficit that is threatening job creation in our country.”
Boehner’s claims of course, are unfounded. Over the last 11 years, taxes on these “job creators” have been lower than in previous administrations, including the Clinton White House, where they paid more in taxes, and the economy flourished. If lowering taxes was the answer, the economy would be better now than it was under Clinton.
But back to the showdown…
After Boehner made his statement trying to influence the decisions being made in the Super Committee, whose job is to come up with another $1.5 trillion in deficit reduction by Thanksgiving, Senior White House officials told the Huffington Post that President Obama will veto any agreement that has only cuts in entitlement programs and no tax increase on the wealthy.
“[W]hat the president is saying is he is not doing [beneficiary reforms] if the Republicans are unwilling to ask the wealthiest Americans and biggest corporations to pay their fair share,” explained a senior administration official. “What they can’t do is send something to us with the things we propose and without the stuff on the revenue side because we will veto that.”
In a speech today, the President will also outline a proposal to ask the top 3% of millionaire Americans to contribute at the same tax rate that middle class Americans pay.
If we are to draw a conclusion from previous showdowns between the White House and the Congressional Republicans, calling this a win for the no-compromising-Republicans would not be far-fetched. However, the Super Committee’s decision is above the influence threshold of Boehner and the Republicans.
Built into the agreement to raise the debt ceiling is specific language that governs how the Super Committee functions. And part of that language states that the President maintains his veto rights and can use those rights if he disagrees with the Committee’s recommendations. But if an agreement is not reached by the members of the Committee, a trigger mechanism automatically goes into effect, cutting funds from programs both Democrats and Republicans adore.
Hmmm, maybe the President did win the debt ceiling debate after all…!