Chap Petersen: What President Obama SHOULD Have Said

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    It’s stuff like this that really makes me like Chap Petersen. What President Obama SHOULD have said with regard to the Bush tax cuts.

    Ladies & Gentlemen:

    It would be very easy for me to break my campaign pledge and continue the Bush tax cuts at the highest rates.  It would be easy for me because  the U.S. Treasury can always print more dollar bills  to cover the historic deficits created by these corrupt fiscal policies.

    But you elected me to make tough choices.  Choices which will close the deficit gap and restore a ‘pay as you go’ mentality to Washington, D.C.  You also elected me to show that this is a democracy — that the wealthiest people should not enjoy a windfall from the repeal of inheritance taxes, while working people see their own tax burden increase.

    As a Democrat, I distrust the aggregation of wealth and power in the hands of a few people. Even my friends.

    And if my honesty costs me a couple contributions in my next re-election, then that’s too damn bad.  

    In the meantime, I am going to restore some honesty in this budget.  And I’m not going to make it a tool for benefitting a small percentage of Americans.”

    Great stuff.

    h/t: Not Larry Sabato

    • Steve Vaughan

      … if the president had followed Chap’s advice.

      The Republicans would have stonewalled, taxes would have gone up, hurting the economy and allowing Republicans to blame Democrats for “the largest tax increase in history.”

      Yes, I know there’s another side to that. But ask yourself who’s been winning those arguements for the last two years? Who has the better message machine? Which side can unite their party behind a cohesive message? It’s easy to say what Obama should have done, but the fact is a significant number of Democrats in both the House and the Senate would have deserted him if he’d tried to fight this out.

      That said, I think he could have negotiated better. He should have at least tried to decouple the “middle class tax cut” from the “upper class tax cut,” making the former permanent and extending the later for  two years. That would have forced the GOP to defend the break for top earners on it’s own merits next time.