Democrats Refuse to Talk about Tax Hikes on CNBC

     As CNBC’s Melissa Francis explained, Democrats want to raise your taxes – but they don’t want to tell you about it.


     “President Bush’s tax cuts expire in 2010, and if the Democrats get their way, America’s taxes will jump more than $2.1 trillion over the next 10 years.”

     The CNBC host opened that segment on the March 15 “On the Money” warning viewers that a budget plan in Congress could affect “how much money you make.” The surprise? No one wanted to defend large-scale tax hikes on her program.

      “We spent all day asking various Democratic leaders and think tanks to explain the plan. They refused,” Francis said.

      “I don’t understand. How does raising taxes and stifling economic growth keep America great?” asked CNBC’s Melissa Francis. She said it wasn’t simply “the rich” who would be taxed more, but middle class families: “If you have two kids, you’re going to pay about $2,700 more in taxes this year – that’s about a 5-percent cut to wages. It doesn’t help the lower end,” Francis said.

     Francis also showed her understanding of economics and the way tax rates affect investment and spending.

     “If there were a Democrat that was willing to come on this show tonight, they might say something like, you know, they’re trying to pay for the budget, or they’re trying to, you know, slim down the deficit,” Francis said. “But I was always taught when I studied economics that when you raise taxes, you might end up with less revenue.”

     Pat Toomey, president of the Club for Growth, agreed.

     “They will point to budget deficits and say that’s why we need to raise taxes. But y’know, the truth is the exact opposite,” Toomey said. “Since the Bush tax cuts, today, we have an all-time record-high level of revenue going into the Treasury.” He added, “Stronger economic growth is the best way to balance the federal government’s budgets, if that’s what you’re concerned about. I’m more concerned about the prosperity of American families.”

      “If the Democrats want to come out and raise taxes, they should hold a press conference and at least have the audacity to tell the nation this is what they believe in,” rather than doing it underhandedly through legislation, said Republican strategist Jack Burkman of J.M. Burkman & Associates.

     Both guests agreed that voting for tax hikes this year was improbable, but Toomey highlighted the fact that no vote is required to raise taxes. The tax cuts are set to run out, and legislators would have to be proactive to renew them.

     “They all expire in 2010. Unfortunately, all the Democrats have to do is sit on their hands, and we’re gonna have a massive tax increase coming right at us,” Toomey said. “A tax bill has to start in the House, has to get to the president’s desk.”