Home » Opinion » Editorials
Rates and revenue: Obama's strange obsession
President Obama's fixation on raising the official tax rate on Americans with incomes of more than $200,000 a year borders on the pathological. Financially, it makes no sense. There are better ways to stimulate the economy, reduce the debt and balance the budget. But Obama is determined to force higher tax rates on higher-income Americans regardless of the effects on the budget or the economy.
"There can be no deal without rates on top earners going up," White House Spokesman Jay Carney said last week. "There's not going to be an agreement without rates going up," Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said on CNN on Sunday.
But raising rates does not necessarily raise federal revenue (see Thomas Sowell's column on this page). And Republicans have offered a plan that would raise $800 billion in revenue without raising rates. Based on a proposal from Democrat Erskine Bowles, it would reduce loopholes that allow richer Americans to avoid paying the higher rates already on the books.
Obama rejected it. A White House spokesman said it wasn't "balanced." It reportedly raises revenues by $800 billion and shaves spending by $1.4 trillion. Obama's offer raises taxes by $1.6 trillion, trims entitlements by $400 billion, cuts another $110 billion and adds $50 billion in new spending. There's a $600 billion gap between new revenues and spending cuts in the GOP plan, and a $1.04 trillion difference in Obama's plan. What's that about balance?
Balance is not what Obama wants. He wants total ideological victory over the Republican Party. For that, he is willing to risk plunging the country into another recession.
READER COMMENTS: 13
- Veterans Count, for less: Feds shred a program that works - 3
- Salem's town clown: Nothing is the public's business - 3
- Havenstein's Pledge: It's a sound business plan - 2
- 'Strange ideas' Banning guns made in NH - 29
- Personhood Controversial? Really? - 30
- Pocket Constitutions: Windham's non-scandal - 16
- Obama's escalation: In Iraq, too broad a fight - 14
- NH's prison population: The real story behind a failed law - 12
- Constitutional thought: Enter our student essay contest - 0
READER COMMENTS: 1
- UPDATED: Regulators OK 47 percent rate hike for Liberty Utilities customers - 6
- Nashua man facing numerous assault charges in attack on woman - 0
- Manchester man arrested in Holiday Inn Express robbery - 0
- After flap over 'racist' comment, no call for Lincoln planner to resign from board - 10
- Review of West High intruder case to be behind closed doors - 4
- Another View -- Daniel Barrick: Manchester's schools face some serious challenges - 0
- Racism in Lincoln? Looks more like ignorance - 3
- Chiefly, Pats are horrible in Monday night blowout in K.C. - 0
- NHIAA Roundup: Double-overtime goal sends Goffstown past John Stark in boys' soccer - 0
Dredging planned for Milford's Osgood Pond
Racism in Lincoln? Looks more like ignorance