Taxes and Blame

by Ramesh Ponnuru

Jonathan Chait writes, “The fact is, blame for failing to extend the popular elements of the Bush tax cuts should be placed on Republicans. They’re the ones who won’t extend a bill like that without getting something (unpopular) in exchange.” This claim would have more force if House Democrats had passed a bill extending middle-class tax cuts that had then fallen victim to a Senate Republican filibuster. At any point since January 2007, House Democrats, if they had really wanted to do it, could have passed an extension of the middle-class tax cuts. They didn’t, and for most of that period President Obama didn’t push them to act.