Why is Obama hiding behind his staff?
The day after White House advisor David Axelrod refused three times to affirm President Barack Obama’s central campaign promise not to raise taxes on families making less than $250,000 per year, spokesman Robert Gibbs yesterday refused seven consecutive opportunities to do the same.
“Why is Obama hiding behind his staff while they insult him and suggest he’s just another politician?” asked Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform (ATR). “Obama’s staff huddles each day, so what Gibbs is saying and what Axelrod is saying is that Obama lied his way into office. He made his tax promise just to get past the election. That promise was a lie.”
A timeline of quotations compiled by ATR does not offer solace to taxpayers:
Barack Obama on Sept. 12, 2008
“I can make a firm pledge. Under my plan, no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase. Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes.”(Dover, NH) [Transcript] [Video clip]
White House spokesman Reid H. Cherlin on April 1, 2009
“The president's position throughout the campaign was that he would not raise income or payroll taxes on families making less than $250,000, and that's a promise he has kept.” (Associated Press interview) [Permalink]
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs on April 15, 2009
“The statement didn’t come with caveats.” (White House Briefing) [Permalink]
Barack Obama on June 16, 2009
“I’m confident that we don’t have to raise taxes on ordinary working families.”(Bloomberg News interview)[Permalink]
White House Advisor David Axelrod on June 28, 2009
“One of the problems we've had in this town is that people draw lines in the sand and they stop talking to each other. And you don't get anything done.”
White House Spokesman Robert Gibbs on June 29, 2009
“We are going to let the process work its way through.” (White House Briefing) [Permalink]