Except for Coburn...Congressional Republicans have taken tax hikes off the table
Senator Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) remains the odd man out when it comes to tax increases. Though he has “decided to take a break” from the Gang of Six, he has thus far refused to rule out tax hikes.
The House GOP leadership took taxes off the table in a joint statement on May 6 -- House Speaker John Boehner, Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, GOP Conference Chairman Jeb Hensarling, Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, Energy & Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton, and Ways & Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp said the following:
“We want to help our economy grow and create jobs, which is why everything must be on the table except increasing taxes. This has been and remains the Republican position.”
On May 10, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) said:
“We’re not going to raise taxes. That was decided in last November’s election. I think the American people pretty clearly believe that we have the deficit problem because we spend too much, not because we tax too little.”
Speaking on the Senate floor on May 16, Senator Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) took tax hikes off the table:
“When we are talking about how to get the budget better balanced, how to reduce our deficits, we should not be looking at the revenue side or the taxing side; we should be looking at the spending side.”
Meanwhile, Sen. Coburn has left the door wide open to tax increases. First, Coburn voted for Obama’s Simpson-Bowles commission report, scored by Congressman Paul Ryan as a $2 trillion tax increase and scored by The Heritage Foundation as a $3.3 trillion tax increase. Then he went on Meet the Press on April 24 and let the viewers know that the tax-increase-door was wide open.
Americans for Tax Reform calls on Sen. Coburn to fully and permanently disown the Gang of Six and join his colleagues in taking tax increases off the table.