Grover Norquist was asked a very specific question about one of the talking points that we hear constantly from Republicans, that you can't raise taxes on the small businesses and "job creators" or you'll do terrible damages to those businesses and put them under and of course when he had some actual numbers put in his face, he couldn't defend it.
Rather than address the fact that yes, this is something Republicans claim over and over on the air and defend the talking point, Norquist punts and turns the conversation to tanning salon taxes being increased, the possibility of increasing taxes on big oil companies and whether or not you can trust President Obama to keep campaign promises with not raising taxes on anyone earning over $250,000 a year.
Sorry Grover, but that's not what the man asked you about. He asked if increasing someone's taxes who makes $300,000 a year by a pittance was really going to mean they didn't have the ability to create jobs any more and you got forced to tell the truth here, no, it won't. It's too bad the caller didn't get a chance to do a follow up with him because the useless C-SPAN hosts like Peter Slen here sure aren't going to.
KEN: The Republican argument says do not raise any taxes or the revenue side, because those are the job makers. And if we do that we're going to crush the jobs. Now explain, I want to understand this. So if somebody making $300,000, they've got a small business, they're creating jobs; the tax increases would be for over $250,000 and I think it's a 4% rate.
Now if I have that right, we're saying that the Democrats want to raise taxes for that $50,000 at 4%, $2000 annually on that $300,000 income, so that person's making $25,000 a month. We're going to raise their taxes $2000 a year, or $160 a month; so are we saying, are the Republicans saying that if you raise taxes on somebody making $25,000 a month, by $160, the equivalent of their cable bill, all of the sudden, their business is going to collapse?
NORQUIST: Umm... no. The concerns about what President Obama want to do on taxes under present structure, Obama wants to take the tax rate which is now 35% on individuals and companies, we're talking the uprate and take that up to 44%. He takes it up to 40% by by one and two and the 2001 tax cut. There are tax increases in Obama-care. On our web site at atr.org there's a list of all the tax increases that exist on, as part of Obama-care's nationalization of health care.
And I'll give you an example, there's a tax on... there's a tanning tax, a 10% tax on about 20,000 different tanning salons around the country. And the tens of millions of people, I've never done this, so I was surprised to learn how many people go to tanning salons, but it's actually a business that the vast majority of the proprietors are women who run these businesses and this tax increase they say is a threat and it's going to be damaging to their ability to function on top of everything else.
And, you know, you're buying into Obama's argument that he'll only tax people or institutions that make more than $250,000 a year. And remember that was a campaign promise that he broke sixteen days into his presidency. So don't go through life expecting that to continue.
With the tax on tanning salons, it's not just people, it's not just millionaires that go to tanning salons. It's about 20 or 30 million Americans who go to tanning salons, many, most middle income Americans.
And now the President wants to raise taxes on gasoline, on the production of oil. He wants to make your gas prices even higher. Now he says, well we're going to tax Exxon. Oh really? Mr. President, let's do an I.Q. test here. Where does Exxon get its money? Oh, from selling oil to people. From selling oil to billionaires? Well selling oil to every American in the country, selling gasoline.
When you take a billion dollars from an oil company, that billion dollars is paid for by consumers. It's at tax on middle income people. So politicians like to hide their taxes by pretending they're taxing companies, when they're actually taxing consumers. And you and I are smart enough to realize that's what happening, higher taxes kill jobs and if you want to remember that when Obama took office he said he was going to spend $800 billion of other people's money and that was going to create 3 million jobs. Since he said that we've lost 1.4 million jobs. We didn't gain three, we lost one and a half million job. Nine percent of the country is unemployed since Obama took office his tax and spending policies have made Americans poorer and have fewer jobs and more jobs have been killed. We have to stop the job killing of the Obama administration and that's what these budget fights are about. Republicans have said... enough.
And for the record, I believe the broken campaign promise Norquist was carping about and families making under $250,000 a year was covered by PolitiFact here and it's on taxing cigarettes to pay for SCHIP and a tanning salon tax increase -- No family making less than $250,000 will see "any form of tax increase.".
TPM has more here on his complaint on the higher gas prices -- Despite Rhetoric, Cutting Oil Subsidies Would Have Little Effect on Gas Prices.
Jon Perr has more here on why the stimulus package did work, but should have been larger and not smaller -- Sorry Joe: Obama, Not GOP, to Blame for Smaller Stimulus.
And I'm not sure where he is getting his numbers on the lost jobs since Obama took office, but I know it doesn't reflect just what we were digging ourselves out of. Steve Benen's been doing a chart every month for some time now showing the comparison between the Bush administration and Obama administration on job creation and here's the latest from his post this month -- Wake up, Washington, jobs landscape is deteriorating.