Republicans’ tax insanity

On Sunday’s “Meet the Press,” Claire McCaskill pointed out that she’d met Grover Norquist for the first time backstage, then asked a pretty good question: “Who is he?”Her point is that Norquist’s visibility and reputation dramatically exceeds his actual political clout. It’s understandable how this has happened. Republicans have evolved over the past three decades into a staunchly anti-tax party, and Norquist is a colorful and endlessly quotable symbol of this absolutism – one who happens to live and work in close proximity to much of the national political press corps. So he gets an awful lot of face time on television and it can sometimes seem as if he and his anti-tax pledge are the reason no Republican member of Congress has voted for a tax hike in over two decades.But, as Tim Noah wrote last week, Norquist’s actual power in Washington and within the GOP is illusory. In terms of stature and public prominence, he’s been a major beneficiary of the party’s opposition to tax increases – but he hasn’t been the driving force behind it. The real story of the GOP’s modern evolution on taxes played out in several stages, from the late 1970s to the early 1990s.Continue Reading…

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Republicans’ tax insanity

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