The Campaign Spot

Those Almost-Mythical Tax-Cuts-Only Republicans

Yesterday I objected to President Obama’s declaration that stimulus bill skeptics believe “tax cuts alone will solve all our problems.” I wrote, “Show me the lawmaker who has argued ‘tax cuts alone will solve all our problems.’ Show me one lawmaker who is unwilling to accept any amount of new spending in the stimulus bill.”

Later in the day, Dave Weigel pointed to the DeMint amendment and argued that the 36 Republicans who voted for it fit the bill, because they voted for an amendment that would have “killed all stimulus spending and replaced it with tax cuts.”

He has a point, but of those 36, 34–everybody except Bunning and DeMint–voted for the McConnell proposal to have the government guarantee low-interest, fixed mortgage rates. As I said yesterday, you can debate whether that’s a good idea or a bad idea, but that’s not a tax cut.

So, yes, Bunning and DeMint are not willing to see new government funding. That leaves Obama 97 other senators to work with (Minnesota’s still working itself out), and yet he’s having a surprising amount of trouble getting a stimulus bill that will pass with anything beyond a party-line vote–a scenario that only 13 percent of Americans think is acceptable, according to CBS.


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