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Bob Turner Needs a History Lesson in "Grand Compromises"


Posted by Paul Blair on Wednesday, May 30th, 2012, 5:16 PM PERMALINK


When Americans for Tax Reform pointed out Bob Turner’s support of higher taxes, he responded by letting everyone know he thinks it is possible for “grand compromises” between Democrats and Republicans to include both spending cuts and tax hikes.

Recent statements by the Turner campaign leave everyone asking if he paid attention to the 1982 and 1990 budget “compromises.” The campaign released the following statement: “All he is saying is that it will take Democrats and Republicans working together to dig ourselves out of this hole, and at the end of the day, that will either happen or we will find ourselves bankrupt.”

Perhaps Bob Turner is not aware, but with a $15 trillion deficit, we are bankrupt. Even worse, he thinks that budget compromises between Republicans and Democrats work. He should examine the 1982 and 1990 budget “compromises.”

In 1982, President Reagan was promised three dollars in spending cuts for every one dollar in tax increases. Whether Bob Turner remembers this or not, Congressional Democrats never delivered on their promise to cut spending.

In 1990, President George H. W. Bush was promised two dollars in spending cuts for ever one dollar in tax increases. He fell for the bait and violated his Pledge to not raise taxes. After a $137 billion tax hike, spending actually rose by $22 billion.

If the 2011 debt-ceiling deal taught us anything it is that when Republicans hold the line on taxes, spending cuts occur. John Boehner understood this and it is a shame that Bob Turner does not.

The campaign went on to state, “Anyone who wouldn’t close some tax loophole in exchange for removing trillions of dollars of debt from the backs of our children doesn’t belong in public office.”

If Bob Turner actually read the Taxpayer Protection Pledge, he would know that signers are free to eliminate deductions or credits if they are met dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates. The overall goal should be a reduction in the size of the federal government, a goal that Turner seems to oppose.

“Either Bob Turner didn’t read the Pledge or continues to be vague in an effort to hide from the fact that he supports higher taxes,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. “I’d happily volunteer to give Turner a brief lesson in the history of failed compromises that involve higher taxes. Only when tax hikes are off the table are spending cuts possible.”

[PDF of Press Release]

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