By Jueseppi B.
Grover Glenn Norquist (born October 19, 1956) is an American lobbyist, conservative activist, and founder and president of Americans for Tax Reform. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He is known as the promoter of the “Taxpayer Protection Pledge”, which prior to the November 2012 election was signed by 95% of all Republican Members of Congress and all but one of the candidates running for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, to oppose increases in marginal income tax rates for individuals and businesses, as well as net reductions or eliminations of deductions and credits without a matching reduced tax rate.
Grover is also a racist lying scumbag, as I stated in the title.
Hat Tip/Shout out to Think Progress
Grover Norquist has launched a wide-ranging media campaign to combat the perception that Republicans are abandoning his pledge to never raise taxes as they work on a plan to avert the fiscal cliff.
The anti-tax zealot uses his ubiquitous presence on cable TV, radio, and in print to publicly pressure Republicans from compromising on a balanced measure that includes increased revenue and spending cuts, using various scare tactics to keep the GOP in line. But his claims — which he dutifully reiterates in every media appearance — are often divorced from reality. Here are Norquist’s top 4 whoppers:
Lie Number 1) “For four years President Obama has not reined in spending. Done nothing useful on entitlement reform.”
Federal spending is actually lower now than it was when President Obama took office. In January 2009, before President Obama had even taken the oath of office, annual spending was set to total 24.9 percent of gross domestic product. Total spending this year, fiscal year 2012, is expected to top out at 23.4 percent of GDP. By 2017, spending will come down to 22 percent of the GDP. In actual dollars, government spending dropped from 2009 to 2010. In fact, Obama has the lowest spending record of any recent president. He has also significantly reformed Medicare — and extended its solvency — through the Affordable Care Act.
Lie Number 2) “That’s where we were with Reagan tax rates and that’s where we were with lower marginal tax rates and with — with reasonable economic growth. We’ve got revenues of 18.5 percent of GDP…. If we had grown at Reagan rates of growth instead of Obama rates of growth, 11 million Americans would be at work today.”
Reagan’s tax cuts did little for economic growth. As Reagan administration economist Bruce Bartlett has noted: “Real gross domestic product growth was about the same after the 1986 act took effect in 1987 as it was before…By the mid-1990’s, it was the consensus view of economists that the Tax Reform Act of 1986 had little, if any, impact on growth.” Other studies came to the same conclusion.
Lie Number 3) “When [Bush] cut marginal tax rates on capital gains and dividends from 2002, there was four years of strong economic growth from ’03 to ’07.”
Numerous studies have found that cutting tax rates for the wealthiest Americans did not spur economic growth or job creation. In fact, since Republicans began instituting supply-side policies under President Reagan,growth has lagged and income inequality has surged, as the wealthiest Americans make more money while paying less in taxes. Under Bush, the nation experienced the worst economic growth of the post-war period.
Lie Number 4) “George Herbert Walker Bush managed the collapse of the Soviet Union, kicked Iraq out of Kuwait, had a 90% approval rating, however he agreed to a tax-increase deal [consisting of] two dollars of spending cuts for every one dollar of taxes. And he lost the presidency.”
As the Washington Post points out, Bush lost re-election because of voter discontent about the economy. His flip flop on taxes ranked low on the list of voter concerns.
A growing number of Republican senators are at least rhetorically backing away from Norquist’s pledge, a sign of his weakened influence in the aftermath of the 2012 elections. Some 16 incumbent Republicans and one incumbent Senator who signed the document lost on election night. In total, 56 Republican House incumbents or candidates who endorsed the pledge and 24 Republican Senators or hopefuls lost.
|Born||Grover Glenn Norquist
October 19, 1956 (age 56)
Sharon, Pennsylvania, U.S.
|Residence||Washington, D.C., U.S.|
|Education||B.A. 1978, M.B.A. 1981|
|Alma mater||Harvard University|
|Organization||Americans for Tax Reform|
|Home town||Weston, Massachusetts|
|Board member of||National Rifle Association,American Conservative Union
|Spouse(s)||Samah Alrayyes Norquist|
Norquist is best known for founding Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) in 1985, which he says was done at the request of then-President Ronald Reagan. Referring to Norquist’s activities as head of ATR, Steve Kroft, in a 60 Minutes episode that aired on November 20, 2011, claimed that “Norquist has been responsible, more than anyone else, for rewriting the dogma of the Republican Party.
Norquist favors dramatically reducing the size of the government. He has been noted for his widely quoted quip: “I’m not in favor of abolishing the government. I just want to shrink it down to the size where we can drown it in the bathtub.” Journalist William Greider quotes him saying his goal is to bring America back to what it was “up until Teddy Roosevelt, when the socialists took over. The income tax, the death tax, regulation, all that.”
When asked by journalist Steven Kroft about the goal of chopping government “in half and then shrink it again to where we were at the turn of the [20th] century” before Social Security and Medicare, Norquist replied, “We functioned in this country with government at eight percent of GDP for a long time and quite well.”
Some smaller government advocates argue that Norquist’s “obsession with tax revenue” is actually counterproductive with respect to minimizing the size of government, however. Although the Americans for Tax Reform mission statement is “The government’s power to control one’s life derives from its power to tax. We believe that power should be minimized”, critics at the Cato Institute have argued that “holding the line on taxes constrains only one of the four tools (taxes, tax deductions, spending without taxation, and regulation) used by government to alter economic outcomes.”
Prior to the November 2012 election, 238 of 242 House Republicans and 41 out of 47 Senate Republicans had signed ATR’s “Taxpayer Protection Pledge”, in which the pledger promises to “oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rate for individuals and business; and to oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates.”
The November 6, 2012 elections resulted in a decline in the number of Taypayer Protection Pledge signatories in both the upper and lower houses of the 113th Congress: from 41 to 39 in the Senate, and from 238 to “fewer than … 218” in the House of Representatives. According to journalist Alex Seitz-Wald, losses in the election by Norquist supporters and the “fiscal cliff” have emboldened and made more vocal critics of Norquist.