The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019

GOP Throws Fit Over Taxes, Walks Out of Debt Ceiling Negotations

Ongoing negotiations between Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and Vice President Joe Biden broke down over the last 24 hours, when Cantor decided that the question of whether there might be tax increases as part of a deficit-reduction package (paired with a legal rise in the debt ceiling) made further discussions pointless.

“We have to get over this impasse on taxes,” he told The Wall Street Journal. “The utility of these talks has been building the specifics. The groundwork has been laid, the blue print is there, we have a vision of the agreement.”

So the talks were making progress and had centered on roughly $2 trillion in cuts, Cantor suggests, but because taxes were inevitably going to be part of the discussion–if only because Democrats are loathe to accept a package comprised solely of massive spending cuts–it was appropriate for him to abandon the effort and pass the buck up to President Obama and Speaker Boehner. “I think it’s in the hands of the speaker and the president and, sadly, probably me,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

“Eric Cantor just threw Boehner under the bus,” a senior Democratic Congressional aide told Talking Points Memo. “This move is an admission that there will be a need for revenues in the final deal to cut our deficit, and Cantor doesn’t want to be the one to make that deal.”

But Cantor is misleading when he suggests taxes are the only thing left; Kent Conrad, the departing Senate Democrat who chairs the Finance Committee, has indicated something more like $4 trillion in spending reductions are warranted.

So Cantor seems to have just tired of Joe Biden’s Catholic-from-Scranton sense of humor, rather than actually having made a coherent decision on ensuring the debt ceiling is raised before America goes into default in the first week of August.

Advertising

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Jeff Danziger lives in New York City. He is represented by CWS Syndicate and the Washington Post Writers Group. He is the recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons, a novel and a memoir. Visit him at DanzigerCartoons.

Kari Lake

While America copes with the chaos unleashed by Republicans in Congress, the Twitterverse has for weeks been plagued by a cascade of election fraud falsehoods obstinately disseminated by failed Republican gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake and repeatedly rejected in court.

Keep reading...Show less
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}