First watch this –
And now the reality.
[Editor’s Note: MSNBC had the video removed. When one of their hosts gets caught lying they get quite aggressive in getting such clips removed from YouTube. Since the video to set the context of this piece is gone we posted this note and explanation as a fix.
In the Video Maddow claims that Republicans (and other media outlets who are honest) stating that passing Obamacare by a Reconciliation Rules (and thus bypassing the 60 vote Cloture Rule) is illegal. Maddow then goes on to list all sorts of bills that were passed in the Senate using Reconciliation Rules, but the problem is that the bills she mentioned are budget bills , which as you will see below, makes her entire narrative a red herring. Maddow is counting on the viewers ignorance of Senate Rules as they relate to the Article I constitutional duties of the Senate. In the video Maddow also claims that previous tax rate reductions caused higher deficits, which you will see below, is demonstrated false by a simple examination of the record]
While Reconciliation Rules have been abused to pass S-CHIP and the new drug entitlement, which were indeed were illegal abuses of this rule, Maddow leaves them out of her list for some reason. Reconciliation is only to be used for budget issues because the Constitution says that Congress has to pass a budget, therefore it may not be filibustered. Even Senator Byrd says that passing health care sweeping regulations under Reconciliation is illegal. The Democrats had a cow when the Republicans threatened to use reconciliation to stop their illegal filibuster of nominations (you see, confirmation votes on nominees is a Constitutional requirement too which is why filibustering a nominee is illegal); apparently what is good for thee is not good for we.
UPDATE – Video: Obama says health reform should not pass with a 50 plus 1 vote – LINK.
Almost every one of the bills Maddow listed are budget and tax bills. Tax legislation is a part of the budget so using reconciliation for that is perfectly appropriate.
Maddow says tax cuts caused current deficits. The record shows government revenue skyrocketed after the tax cuts. Below is a small sample of the evidence of the increased revenue [I have more here]. Stating the obvious; when your revenue shoots up and you continue to go in the red that indicates a spending problem not a revenue one.
Reducing the capital gains tax rate from 20% to 15% increased capital gains tax receipts by 79% from 2000 to 2004. Cutting the dividend tax rate by more than half–from 39.6% to 15%–increased dividend tax receipts by 35% from 2002 to 2004. And corporate tax receipts have nearly tripled since 2003, reaching $250 billion for the past nine months, 26% higher than the same period last year. (WSJ July 25, 2006)
WASHINGTON — The federal deficit in the budget year that just ended fell to a four-year low of $247.7 billion _ a figure President Bush touted Wednesday as “proof that pro-growth policies work.” The deficit for the budget year that ended Sept. 30 was 22.3 percent lower than the $318.7 billion imbalance for 2005, handing Bush a welcome economic talking point as Republicans battle to hold onto control of Congress in the midterm elections. (AP Oct. 11, 2006)
One place it has come from are corporations, whose tax collections have climbed by 76% over the past two years thanks to greater profitability. Personal income tax payments are up by 30.3% since 2004 too, despite the fact that the highest tax rate is down to 35% from 39.6%. The IRS tax-return data just released last month indicates that a near-record 37% of those income tax payments are received from the top 1% of earners — “the rich,” who are derided regularly in Washington for not paying their “fair share.” (WSJ Oct. 6 2006) – The rich are paying more in real dollars since the tax cuts.
US Treasury Sets New 1-Day Tax Receipt Record Of $85.8 Billion
Tuesday September 19th, 2006 / 0h04
WASHINGTON -(Dow Jones)- The U.S. government recorded record-high overall and corporate tax receipts on Sept. 15, which was a quarterly deadline for tax payments, the Treasury said Monday.
Total tax receipts were $85.8 billion on Friday, compared with the previous one-day record of $71 billion on Sept. 15 of last year, the Treasury said.
Within the overall figure, corporate tax receipts Friday were $71.8 billion, up from $63 billion in September of last year.
Treasury Undersecretary for Domestic Finance Randal Quarles said Friday’s numbers provided a “continuing demonstration of the strength of the U.S. economy.”
“In fact, Friday’s gross receipts were the largest in a single day in the nation’s history – 20% higher than receipts on the same quarterly tax payment date last year,” Quarles said in a statement.
October 27, 2006 at 10:30 pm e
Laffer’s Victory – July 10, 2006 – The New York Sun
July 10, 2006 Edition
New York Sun Staff Editorial
July 10, 2006
It’s official — Arthur Laffer wins. New data show federal revenues surged in the first three quarters of the current fiscal year. Corporate tax receipts are up more than 26% over the same period last year, ringing in at $250 billion. Individual income tax collections, at $791 billion, are up 14% over the first nine months of fiscal 2005. The Congressional Budget Office projects corporate tax receipts will total $330 billion by the end of the fiscal year. As a result, the deficit for the year is expected to be about $300 billion, down from $318 billion last year and $412 billion the year before.
What, you ask, has led to this miraculous event? A tax cut, it turns out. Or rather, an array of tax cuts, on corporate income, personal income, and capital gains. These tax cuts, passed in 2001 and 2003, appear to be having the desired effect of spurring economic growth by creating addition incentives for work and entrepreneurship. The latest numbers, moreover, offer some hard data to challenge some of the charges leveled against President Bush and congressional Republicans in respect of tax cuts. These tax cuts haven’t exactly benefited “the rich.” A third of those higher income-tax revenues came from the highest-earning 1% of households, according to the New York Times.
Budget Deficit Drops $296B Under Estimate
Jul 11, 11:01 AM (ET)
By ANDREW TAYLOR
WASHINGTON (AP) – President Bush touted new deficit figures Tuesday showing considerable improvement upon earlier administration predictions, saying it shows the wisdom of his tax cuts.
Bush himself announced the figures – a task that for the most part has been left to lower-ranking administration officials in the past. The new figures show the deficit for the budget year ending Sept. 30 will be $296 billion – much better than the $423 billion that Bush predicted in February and a slight improvement over 2005.
October 27, 2006 at 10:33 pm e
Surprising Jump in Tax Revenues Is Curbing Deficit
Surprising Jump in Tax Revenues Is Curbing Deficit – New York Times
By EDMUND L. ANDREWS
Published: July 9, 2006
WASHINGTON, July 8 — An unexpectedly steep rise in tax revenues from corporations and the wealthy is driving down the projected budget deficit this year, even though spending has climbed sharply because of the war in Iraq and the cost of hurricane relief.
Graphic: Mixed Signals On Tuesday, White House officials are expected to announce that the tax receipts will be about $250 billion above last year’s levels and that the deficit will be about $100 billion less than what they projected six months ago. The rising tide in tax payments has been building for months, but the increased scale is surprising even seasoned budget analysts and making it easier for both the administration and Congress to finesse the big run-up in spending over the past year.
Tax revenues are climbing twice as fast as the administration predicted in February, so fast that the budget deficit could actually decline this year.
A flood of income tax payments pushed up government receipts to the second-highest level in history in April, giving the country a sizable surplus for the month. In its monthly accounting of the government’s books, the Treasury Department said Wednesday that revenue for the month totaled $315.1 billion as Americans filed their tax returns by the April deadline. The gusher of tax revenue pushed total receipts up by 13.4 percent from April 2005. (AP May 10, 2006)
WASHINGTON, July 8 — An unexpectedly steep rise in tax revenues from corporations and the wealthy is driving down the projected budget deficit this year, even though spending has climbed sharply because of the war in Iraq and the cost of hurricane relief. (NYT July 9, 2006)
Here is a Video of JFK talking about how tax cuts can increase revenue.
YouTube – Income Tax Cut. JFK Hopes To Spur Economy 1962/08/13 (1962)
SOURCE: CBO, White House Office of Management and Budget | The Washington Post – March 21, 2009
Mona Charen, who is one of the finest thinkers alive, has the best column explaining this:
Let’s imagine that President Obama decides to go help out in Fargo, N.D., where they are experiencing floods. Mr. Obama enters the home of a flooded family. The water is already six inches high in the living room. The president produces a fire hose and begins to douse the room with even more water. “What are you doing?” cry the anguished homeowners. The president fixes them with one of his impatient looks, and explains “May I remind you that I inherited this flood?”
President Obama has reminded us countless times that he inherited a $1.3 trillion deficit. Even if he were about to propose the most responsible, prudent, visionary budget imaginable, that complaint would still be petulant and unseemly. But considering what Obama’s own spending will do to the deficit, it’s jaw-droppingly galling. He now proposes to increase that deficit to $7 trillion in ten years. And that $7 trillion is probably a low estimate (the Congressional Budget Office estimates that it will be $2.3 trillion higher). When the new spending for programs like Pell grants, education for handicapped children, and so forth comes up for renewal in a few years, Congress is not going to let it lapse. So, to review, it was terrible for President Bush and the Democratic Congress (the president neglects to mention the latter) to saddle him with all this debt. His answer is to triple it. That’s showing ’em!
Like I said before, correcting Rachel Maddow could fast become a full time job.