Why Won’t Republicans Discuss Raising Taxes?

Why won’t Republicans discuss raising tax revenues in their budget talks? There is an obvious, but overlooked answer. It’s not that the Republicans stand for lower taxes and smaller government, as they once did. But rather their reason is much more childish, simplistic, and sinister.

Despite the fact that George W. Bush, Jr. initiated the bank bailout known as TARP, Republicans and Tea Partiers demonized President Obama for its passage. The Troubled Asset Relief Program was a response to the sub-prime mortgage crisis, which not only was caused by a lack of regulations of our banks, but it was designed to purchases the toxic assets from our banks to prevent their bankruptcies. For the failure of our financial institutions would surely drive our economy reminiscent of the run on the banks in 1929. Our Great Recession would have been Great Depression II. Of course our banks used the money in other ways, such as automation, buying out smaller or less fortunate financial institutions, and paying out large CEO bonuses. The Republican’s Free Market approach did nothing to prevent this crisis or any future reoccurrences, but rather nurtured it. Without regulations, these banks were able to take over smaller banks, automate the foreclosure process, and payroll more lobbyists to fight regulations.

Ignoring the fact that George W. Bush, Jr. bailed out our automotive industry twice during his administration, Republicans attempt to crucify President Obama for the last Auto Bailout. Neglecting evidence that their free market approach has not worked in protecting one of Americans’ largest manufacturing industry, protecting millions of American jobs across the country, Republicans and Tea Partiers would rather have seen us lose our industry to overseas competition. But that is the Free Market approach, to allow failing companies who made poor business decisions, fail, despite of any economic hardships thrust upon the American people.

Rather than debating the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act on its merits, Republicans and Tea Partiers decried this federal statute as a government takeover, instituting “Death Panels”, and as a job killer. Even though this act was based upon Republican proposals over the years, they denounce it as “Socialism”. Guaranteed enrollment in Health Insurance coverage is not a Socialistic approach. Insurance companies make out like bandits on this one. But then, Republicans and Tea Partiers alike cannot stomach the regulations put upon Health Insurance companies, which attempts to reduce the profits reaped by the CEOs through enforcing a certain portion of an insured payments go towards their health care.

The Republicans and Tea Partiers alike have blocked all federal appointees proposed by President Obama. As former GOP congressional aide Joseph Englehard said, “This isn’t about any particular appointee – Ben Franklin could come back to life and they would oppose him.” Or to paraphrase, this is not about ideology, but rather it is only about obstructionism and not allowing one single victory for President Obama.

Instead of protecting American Jobs, as the Republicans and Tea Partiers claimed was their so-called mandate in the midterm elections, they blocked job saving and job creating bills. They blocked a bill that would have eliminated the tax breaks on companies who ship jobs overseas, the jobs bill which would have offset payroll taxes on companies who hired new employees, and the Fair Pay Act of 2009 which would ensure women receive the same compensation as men for doing the same work.

But all of this points towards one agenda, one goal, and one honest statement from Mitch McConnell. The Republicans are not interested in governing, jobs, equality, protecting our failing economy, or even taxes. As House Minority Leader Mitch McConnell plainly said, their “number one priority is to ensure Obama is a one-term president”. And let there be no mistake about it, this has been their goal ever since President Obama was elected into office. Why else would the Republicans denounce policies which they once stood for?