With the sequester set to kick in on March 1, President Obama and his Democrat allies are hell-bent on shifting the conversation away from proper government cuts, and toward higher taxes. On Sunday, House Minority Leader Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) took to Fox News Sunday to explain that America does not have a spending problem. “It is almost a false argument to say that we have a spending problem. We have a budget deficit problem,” Pelosi insisted.
Pelosi’s motion was seconded by Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) on NBC’s Meet the Press, where Durbin laughably explained that the sequester was “designed as a budget threat, not as a budget strategy” – and stated that the only approach to solving the budget problem was to raise taxes again.
President Obama himself agreed with that perspective in his weekly online address. The budget sequester he signed off on – the sequester proposal he insisted upon – is now the Republicans’ fault. Obama claims that if the sequester goes through, “firefighters and food inspectors” will bear the brunt of the cuts, as well as cancer research and people with disabilities. It’s the usual liberal demagogic approach to any problem: world to end tomorrow, minorities hit hardest.
Obama’s solution: tax increases. Again. “Congress should pass a similar set of balanced cuts and close more tax loopholes until they can find a way to replace the sequester with a smarter, longer-term solution,” said Obama.
Of course, Obama has been on this “not a spending problem” kick for months. He infamously informed House Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) that there is no spending problem back during the fiscal cliff debate.
Meanwhile, Republicans continued to flee the sequester debate on the Sunday shows, with House Majority Whip Eric Cantor leading the way, explaining on NBC’s Meet the Press, “Clearly, this is not the best way to go about controlling spending.” But, as Cantor added, “The problem is every time you turn around, the answer is to raise taxes. He just got his tax hike on the wealthy, and you can’t, in this town, every three months raise taxes …. We have got a spending problem, everybody knows it.”
Not everybody knows it. Or if they do, they’re lying. Republicans had better stop playing nice and simply start passing sequester revision proposals. There should be no tax increases on the table this time. If there are, forgiveness from conservatives will be difficult to come by.
Ben Shapiro is Editor-At-Large of Breitbart News and author of the book “Bullies: How the Left’s Culture of Fear and Intimidation Silences America” (Threshold Editions, January 8, 2013).