The Democrats In Congress: History Repeating Itselfby Doug Mataconis
I can’t say that I’m surprised but it looks like the days of tax-and-spend are due for a comeback:
The new Democratic majority begins dancing the next phase of the tax-and-spend minuet in the House of Representatives today. Following the example set by their Senate brethren last Friday, House Democrats will adopt a budget resolution containing the largest tax increase in U.S. history amid massive national inattention.
Nobody’s tax payment will increase immediately, but the budget resolutions set a pattern for years ahead. The House version would increase non-defense, non-emergency spending by $22.5 billion for next fiscal year, with such spending to rise 2.4 percent in each of the next three years. To pay for these increases, the resolution would raise taxes by close to $400 billion over five years — about $100 billion more than what was passed in the Senate.
It had been assumed that the new Democratic majority would end President Bush’s relief in capital gains, dividend and estate taxation. The simultaneous rollback of Bush-sponsored income tax cuts was a surprise. This reflects Democrats’ belief that they can survive a long-term commitment to bigger government. Here is an audacious effort to raise the banner of fiscal responsibility while increasing spending and taxes.
Now, let’s be perfectly clear. The Republican Party deserved to lose control of Congress. As I said in many posts in the wake of the 2006 elections (see here, here, here, and here) they had abandoned any pretense of abiding by the limited government ideas that they had campaigned on in 1994 and had become lap dogs to a President who is more like LBJ thank Ronald Reagan.
That said, I was under no illusions about what we would be getting from a Democratic majority. The fact that they are already starting down the road toward higher taxes and higher spending should surprise nobody.