Republicans Wrangle Over Budget Bill's Tax Impact

December 13, 2013 - 10:07 AM

House Republicans are making contradictory claims about the tax impact of the budget bill passed yesterday, as they issue statements explaining why they voted for - or against - the "Ryan-Murray" Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013 (H. J. Res. 59).

Rep. Walter B. Jones (R-NC):

"The bill imposes an increased 'fee' - otherwise known as a tax - on every airline passenger in the country."

Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.):

"This agreement returns the power of the purse to Congress and allows us to take control of the budget process so we can begin to make permanent reforms to mandatory spending that will result in long term savings without raising taxes that President Obama wanted and needs to run his failed programs."

Rep. Paul Broun, MD (R-Ga.):

'I refuse to support a bill that would increase spending, raise taxes, and keep Obamacare funds in place."

Virginia Foxx (R-NC):

"Trust me. As a proud fiscal conservative, I was skeptical of this agreement before the details emerged.'

"Their budget agreement provides a framework to reduce the federal deficit an additional $23 billion beyond current law, and it does so without raising taxes."

Tom McClintock (R-Calif.):

"Some of the discussion has focused on how much of the spending spree will be paid with higher taxes.  The answer is, "all of it."  Once government spends a dollar, it has already decided to tax that dollar - the only questions that remain are who gets the bill and when.

"Sixty-three billion dollars of new spending - and therefore new taxes in some form - is not a small amount of money.  It averages about $570 of added burdens for every family in America."

Rep. McClintock even answers the "no tax increase" claim of the bill's supporters, comparing their logic to that of the character "Wimpy" from "Popeye":

"Not so, say supporters.  Over the next ten years, fee increases and spending reforms will pay for all of this, with $22 billion to spare for debt reduction.  The claim is a practical application of the economic principles of J. Wellington Wimpy: "I will gladly pay you $22 billion in deficit reduction ten years from now for $63 billion in new spending today."