Thursday, November 29, 2012

Tax hike only pays for 6 days of government spending? We’re not that stupid.

We all have a way of tolerating really ridiculous talking points from our tea party Republican partisans, but one in particular stands out after getting an urgent call from my conservative friend.

According to the Washington Post's fact checkers, despite having some basis in fact, it really is stupid, as the title above suggests. So the Post decided to expand on the idea:
The GOP’s claim that a tax hike on the wealthy would pay for only a week of spending ...
Over a decade, the rate hikes and other provisions affecting the wealthy would raise $968 billion, which is essentially one year of the current deficit. Republicans proposed raising an estimated $50 billion per year by eliminating deductions and closing tax loopholes. That covers only 4.8 days of government spending.

Republican members of the committee also proposed trimming Medicare and Medicaid spending by about $28 billion per year. That would reduce government spending by only 2.7 days if you use the McConnell-McCarthy metric.

House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.)  spokesman said: “We are not disputing that raising taxes would decrease the deficit. We are saying it would not generate nearly enough revenue to reverse the dangerous trajectory our government spending is on.”

These are valid points. But just because a rate hike wouldn’t solve the deficit problem on its own doesn’t mean lawmakers should take the option off the table entirely.

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