The Corner

A Tax Dust-Up

After yesterday’s Wall Street Journal reported on work toward a bipartisan deal on the budget, Grover Norquist of Americans for Tax Reform sent three Republican senators a letter noting that the deal, as outlined in the Journal article, would violate their pledge not to raise taxes. The response letter from Senators Chambliss, Coburn, and Crapo strongly suggests that the senators will not support a deal that raises taxes on net. Instead they want a bill that raises revenue only by increasing economic growth. It is hard to believe (a) that tax-policy changes would generate as much increased growth and thus revenue as the dealmakers are aiming for or (b) that Democrats would ever sign a deal that includes no net tax increases and large reductions in planned spending.

Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

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