The battle over allowing the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans has reached the election year boiling point. The Democrats (finally) are framing this debate properly and putting Republicans on the defensive, so much so that House minority leader John Boehner got spooked and said that he’d support extending the middle class tax cuts even if the cuts for those making more than $250,000 were not included. This was met with derision from the rest of his party, which smells victory in November and is no mood to compromise on anything. Republicans are having a hard time justifying extending a unpaid-for tax cut that will cost the government some $750 billion, while simultaneously demanding that the deficit be reduced. Nobody is buying the old trickle-down theory that the wealthy need that money to create jobs. They’ve got the money; where are the jobs? I do love the accusation that asking for the rich to pay their share is “class warfare.” The top 1% now receive 23% of the nation’s income, the highest level since before the Great Depression. The class war has already been won, and it’s the rest of us who lost.
That said, the GOP somehow still seems to be winning the populist points in this election. Now that the Dems have at least one argument in their favor, perhaps the bloodbath won’t be quite as horrendous come November, assuming the party can stay on message, which never seems to be its strong suit.