February 19, 2006


Trillion-Dollar Gimmick: Extending Bush's Tax Cuts Through Sleight of Hand (David S. Broder, February 19, 2006, Washington Post)

The president is urging Congress to make [his] tax cuts permanent, but his proposal is controversial and has not yet passed.

This year, however, the budget the president submitted on Feb. 6 simply assumes that the tax cuts have been made permanent -- and thus includes them in the "baseline" for all future years.

The effect, according to the center's analysis, is that "legislation to make these tax cuts permanent will be scored as having no cost whatsoever."

In fact, this analysis says, "The administration's proposal, by changing the rules after the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts were enacted but before they are extended, would ensure that the cost of continuing the tax cuts in the years after the current sunset dates would never be counted. The costs in those years were not counted when the tax cuts were first enacted. . . . Now, the administration is proposing that the tax cuts for those years also be ignored when the tax cuts are extended. To fail ever to count the cost of the tax cuts in the years after the sunset dates . . . would represent one of the largest and most flagrant budget gimmicks in recent memory."

No non-wonk can decipher that, so let's make it a tv ad tagline: Vote for us and we'll raise your taxes by a trillion dollars!

Posted by Orrin Judd at February 19, 2006 10:43 AM

Ironically, this is the Democrats favorite trick: assume that all programs must be funded in the future, use that as a "baseline" for future budgets, and then claim that any failure to fund at the projected level is a cut.

Posted by: David Cohen at February 19, 2006 10:55 AM

War is peace, hate is love, the state "spends" money when it suffers you to keep it, and truth means less than nothing to those people.

Posted by: Lou Gots at February 19, 2006 12:33 PM

There is no absolute truth, or so we'be been led to believe.

Posted by: erp at February 19, 2006 1:18 PM

There is no absolute truth - and that's the absolute truth!

Posted by: obc at February 19, 2006 1:49 PM

Tell the Dems to agree to stop calling a smaller-than-desired budget increase a "cut", and the Pubs will refrain from calling a smaller-than-desired taxcut a "tax increase". It's only fair.

Posted by: Gideon at February 19, 2006 1:50 PM



Posted by: oj at February 19, 2006 1:55 PM
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