Deficit Hawk Senators Oppose Tax Cuts For The Rich

While The Hill titles the article Dems, Obama Divided Over Locking In Bush Tax Cuts, the real news out of this article for me is the emergence of honest to goodness deficit hawks in the Senate (as opposed to the phony ones you see on Sunday talk shows. From the article:

Several senators, including Democratic Policy Committee Chairman Byron Dorgan (N.D.), are hesitant about giving up an estimated $1.5 trillion in revenue over the next decade, when the federal deficit is unsustainable and there are no obvious spending cuts to fix it. They say it would be smarter to pass a short-term extension of the expiring Bush tax cuts for families earning less than $250,000, then re-evaluate tax policy in a year or two when the economy is stronger.

“I think a far better approach is to extend the middle-income tax cuts for two years and then make a judgment,” said Dorgan. “I don’t think we should get locked into any specifics. It locks us in to say this is going to be permanent,” added Sen. Tom Udall (N.M.). [. . .] Sen. Dianne Feinstein (Calif.), an influential member of the Senate Democratic Conference, said a temporary extension is “worth talking about.” [. . .] Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) said he would support a short-term extension of the middle-class cuts. “I think that’s a good idea,” he said. “As long as we get them extended now, so we get past the early part of next year with the economy still in extremis in a lot of states like my own.

(Emphasis supplied.) I think that President Obama has played the issue shrewdly - demanding permanent tax cuts for the middle class and vehemently opposing tax cuts for the rich. Real deficit hawks now have a position they can flock to - temporary middle class tax cuts and NO tax cuts for the rich. This can work.

Speaking for me only

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    Reported by BTD and nobody else much (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by Militarytracy on Wed Sep 29, 2010 at 09:24:11 AM EST
    Of course I should see Obama standing at a podium with little flecks of spit shooting out of his mouth as he reads the list of their names.  This would happen as he barn burns his way across the country doing nothing but delivering this naming names speech and educating the whole country as to exactly what making the rich richer and making the infrastructure poorer will do to further decimate this country.........but that would damage our future bipartisanship.  Those of us who should care and know how to get things done in the real world are left to sit here and grind our teeth.

    You could say Obama (5.00 / 2) (#3)
    by Makarov on Wed Sep 29, 2010 at 10:39:33 AM EST
    is shrewd, if there were an actual vote. There hasn't been, and reporting of late indicates there won't be one in either the Senate or House.

    Last spring I thought Pelosi and Reid would wait until after the August recess to give Republicans a chance to vote against middle class tax cuts. I don't understand why they won't bring one to give some hard pressed incumbents in their party an opportunity to differentiate themselves from Republican rhetoric.

    I don't know for a fact, but strongly suspect, that if Obama's administration really wanted a vote on middle class tax cuts, there would be one.

    The problem is that several (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by MO Blue on Wed Sep 29, 2010 at 12:06:20 PM EST
    Dems do not want to differentiate themselves from Republicans on providing tax cuts to the wealthy. They want to keep the tax cuts for the people they really represent.

    OT: Whither the Senate? (none / 0) (#2)
    by the capstan on Wed Sep 29, 2010 at 09:50:27 AM EST
    Jim DeMint lays down the law: all bills and nominations slated for unanimous passage must go through his office for review.  Not sure how much legislation this would cover.  BUT if someone does not step up to the plate, everyone in the other 49 may become (in effect) South Carolinians.  Think you would like that?

    Crazy season in DC--and the right guy to lead the way.