ATR Federal Affairs Manager Chris Prandoni writes in an op-ed for Big Government: “After months of sitting on the sidelines, President Obama has injected himself into debt limit talks. Unfortunately, the president’s proposals are anything but novel—tax increases on oil and natural gas companies—and are unlikely to break the current impasse… Just a thought experiment, is raising oil and natural gas companies taxes a good way to address the deficit? Obama seems to think so…But that might not be the case. A recent study by Louisiana State University finance processor, Joseph Mason, concludes that two of the president’s proposed tax hikes… in fact, exacerbate America’s ever increasing debt. Since coming into office, Obama has increased federal spending by nearly a trillion dollars. The current mess we’re in has nothing to do with revenue and everything to do with overspending. Republicans are using this debt ceiling to force the issue and demand spending cuts. Obama is using it to raise taxes.”

David A. Patten writes for Newsmax: “Anti-tax advocate Grover Norquist offered a staunch defense of House Speaker John Boehner Monday morning on MSNBC’s ‘Daily Rundown’ program, telling host Chuck Todd that Boehner ‘personally is committed’ to opposing any new taxes. Todd probed several times to determine whether there is any schism between Norquist and Boehner, asking if he’s worried Boehner might strike a ‘grand bargain’ with the president. Such a deal would cut spending up to $4 trillion and constrain Social Security outlays in return for an increase in federal revenues. Norquist’s response: ‘He would not sign onto a deal that raises taxes. He’s said it a hundred times. I know some people keep asking in different ways. Advocates of more spending keep asking Republicans whether they might be open to a tax increase, the way a teen age boy keeps asking the same question on a prom date,’ said Norquist, the president of Americans for Tax Reform. ‘But the answer is no. No! No!’”

John Marino writes for Caribbean Business: “’Obama increased spending by $1 trillion a year, and it was not just the stimulus package. The spending has kept up,’ Norquist said. ‘Obama is in a difficult position, with 9% unemployment, which he did. Unemployment and everything else has gotten a lot worse since he came into office.’ Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform, is playing a central role in negotiations between Republicans in Congress and the Obama administration over a new authorization to raise the debt ceiling. The group works to get congressional and presidential candidates to sign pledges that they won't support a net tax increase while holding office. Republicans have been conditioning approval of the increase in the debt ceiling on steep cuts in federal spending, while Democrats say they want a mix of cuts and revenue measures to address the U.S. long-term deficit. Norquist believes the no-tax side will win out. ‘The reason why we can get a deal with Obama and force him to roll back some of the spending is because Obama is so scared,’ he said.”