Norquist Tells GOP That Raising Taxes On The Middle Class Doesn’t Count As A Tax Increase


Written by Travis Waldron

Anti-tax zealot Grover Norquist, the president of Americans For Tax Reform and author of the radical anti-tax pledge that has played a significant role in hamstringing budget and deficit-reduction negotiations, has said that it is unacceptable for those who have signed his pledge to vote in favor of any tax increase. But now that President Obama and congressional Democrats are backing a tax cut aimed at stimulating economic growth, Norquist has changed his tune.

Norquist met with Republican members today to let them know that opposing the extension of the payroll tax cut — which would provide many families an extra $1,000 a year — would not amount to supporting a tax increase, National Journal’s Billy House reported today:

@HouseinSession: Norquist advises a room of House Republicans Thursday that a failure to extend the payroll tax cut should not be viewed as raising taxes.

That stands in contrast, however, to Norquist’s position on tax cuts for the wealthy. Norquist has repeatedly warned GOP members about voting in favor of repealing the Bush tax cuts for the rich or tax hikes on millionaires, even verbally sparring with a member of a group of millionaires advocating for higher taxes on themselves last month in Washington, D.C. And yet, when it comes to tax cuts for the middle class meant to drive economic recovery, Norquist clearly takes a different stance.

Republicans who have defended those tax breaks for the wealthy aren’t so sure about holding the Norquist position, though. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) warned his rank and file this morning about opposing the extension, telling them that “taxes are a Republican issue and you aren’t a Republican if you want to raise taxes on struggling families to fund bigger government.” Multiple Republican senators, meanwhile, have come out in favor of the extension, and Sen. Sue Collins (R-ME) even proposed raising taxes on some wealthy Americans to pay for it.

This post was originally published by ThinkProgress.


Related Stories:

Is Grover Norquist Just “Some Random Person?”

Grover Norquist: The Man Behind Our Revenue Problem

Will We Have a Payroll Tax Cut Extension or Unemployment Extension for Christmas?


Photo from Gage Skidmore via flickr


Duane B.
.5 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

Barbara U.
Barbara U5 years ago

Norquist seems to have more power with Republicans than Obama. Obama won the election on the platform of raising revenue by letting the BTC expire for the wealthiest.

They keep using slick slogans that we have a "spending problem." We have two wars to pay for!! They always seem to forget that when they put forth the BS that 47% want entitlements.

Susan W.
Susan Wolff5 years ago

Mabye we need to go in to work before the new year and tell our bosses not to take tax out of our payroll and ask for a 1099 so that we can choose what we want to pay in taxes at the end ot the year.It might drive the point home that we would love to pay only the 14 percent that Mr. Romney pays. If the rich do not want to pay more than mabye we should pay less' just like them. Lets see what congress thinks of that!!!!!!!!!!!!!

dale ruff
Past Member 5 years ago

All politicians (and govt workers such as teachers) vow to uphold the Constitution.
The Constitution gives Congress the right to raise taxes. Any pledge which obstructs that ability is a betrayal of the original pledge to the Constitution.

The Norquist pledge puts ideological purity (taxes are theft...also an anti-Constitutional dogma; taxes lead to economic decline.....refuted by the historical record, Clinton raised taxes and grew the economy)ahead of the Constitutional pledge and thus represents
putting ideology ahead of the Constitution and the government responsibilities it mandates.
In the end, since it is a Republican agenda, it means putting Party ahead of the Nation, which is a betrayal of public office.

Charles S.
Charles S5 years ago

Anyone who signs Nordquist 's pledge to not raise taxes , is irresponsible , and should not be allowed to hold office. You cannot govern if you can't raise taxes when necessary or lower them. The only pledge anyone should make is , to govern to the best of their ability and serve the people who voted for them , not the people who spent all the money.
Where do you think the U.S. , or any state would be today , if all elected officials had taken Nordqist's pledge. We would be in utter chaos. We would never have won WW II or built interstate highways or many other things governments do for their citizens..
Why would any intelligent person sign a pledge to someone who was never elected by anyone or has the authority for anyone to answer to ?

Donald B.
Donald Burnison6 years ago

Why is this the first time I have seen or heard of "Rule 6" of the Code of Ethics? If this is a valid representation then all those who have signed the Nordquist promise should be sanctioned by the House Ethics Comm., and Nordquist should be declared an American Taliban tool and investigated for un-American activities. How self-serving and unpatriotic. How does this man derive his subsistence if not a Koch tool?

Robert Frank
Robert Frank6 years ago

what an ass and a hypocrite...its times like these you want to just slap people like this across the face and say "how dare you!!!! "

Sylvia M.
Sylvia M6 years ago

When will the GOP realize that Emperor Norquist has no clothes on?

Andy W.
Andy W.6 years ago

Run Grover back to Sesame Street! Preferably tarred and feathered. The man (and there is some doubt of that) is a hypocritical, lying sack of.....

Art T.
Art T.6 years ago

Forget about Grover Norquist. Instead, call out the lawmakers who signed the Taxpayer Protection Pledge in violation of Rule 6 of the Code of Ethics for Government Service. Rule 6 admonishes lawmakers to "Make no private promises of any kind binding upon the duties of office..." Call on the Ethics Committees to censure all lawmakers who signed this Pledge.