Thursday, March 15, 2012

Republican Rick Crawford To Propose Millionaire's Tax

Rep. Crawford shares his House voting card with
2011 Baxter Co. Republican Lincoln Day Dinner
attendees. He criticized the Obama Agenda and
supported the Cut, Cap, and Balanced agenda.
Photo by Bill Smith, ARRA News Service
ARRA News Service - Politico reports that Rep. Rick Crawford (R-AR) will next Tuesday introduce in the US. House a bill that supports a tax surcharge on millionaires. Needless to say conservatives in his district are shocked. Crawford who is in his first term replaced retiring democrat Rep. Marion Berry. We expect a Democrat like Marion Berry would have proposed this class-warfare tax on millionaires. However, it was not expected that this would be done by a first term Republican who is the first Republican since reconstruction elected to Congress in Arkansas 1st District.&

Crawford did not make this announcement of a Millionaire's Tax before the 2012 primary filing date, and now benefits by not having an opponent in the Arkansas Republican primary. However, he will be opposed in the Nov. general election by one of three democrats running for his position. Beyond Crawford's reasons detailed in the following Politico article, conservatives in the first district will be expecting far more justification for a "conservative" freshman introducing increased tax legislation.

In 2010, candidate Crawford received substantial assistance via issue ads by independent organizations like American For Prosperity which addressed issues and the record of his opponent who had been on staff and then chief of staff for Democrat Rep. Marion Berry. Will Crawford's proposed tax increase silence support by 2012 conservative PACs, independent issue advertising, and district conservatives who supported his campaign in 2010. Most issue and limited government organizations know that millionaires are not the problem. Millionaires already pay the majority of income taxes and are a subject of class warfare attacks by the Obama administration. Obama and the liberal agenda are creating the economic problems.

The advocates for taxing the golden goose are Democrats. It now appears that there is one issue that Rick Crawford, President Obama, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid can agree on - the need to tax the rich more. Crawford’s proposal right before the 2012 election had better yield a significant number of Democrat votes. Otherwise, Republican Congressman Crawford may be headed home in Jan 2013.

Politico's story follows.

By Jake Sherman, Politico: Freshman Republican Rep. Rick Crawford will propose a surtax on millionaires Thursday morning, a crack in the steadfast GOP opposition to extracting more money from the nation’s top earners.

The Arkansas Republican will unveil the plan during a local television interview Thursday morning, and plans to introduce legislation when the House returns next week, according to sources familiar with his thinking.

Crawford will propose the additional tax— expected to be north of 2.5 percent — on individual income over $1 million as part of a broader fiscal responsibility package.

“He’s watched the Gangs of Six and 100 and deficit commissions, as well as leadership’s budget and tax plan, and he feels there will never be a deal that will pass the Senate without a revenue component,” a Crawford aide said, describing the legislation without attribution because it has not yet been officially announced.

It’s a significant development in the multi-year Republican fight over the $15 trillion debt.

This freshman class was swept into D.C. on a wave of fiscal responsibility, which has given way to a slew of proposals to attempt to right the nation’s finances. Most notably, Republicans have slashed billions of dollars in government spending, proposed massive overhauls to social programs and morphed routine events like raising the nation’s debt ceiling and funding the government into cataclysmic, soul-searching fights.

But Republicans have always been resistant to raising government revenue through increased taxes. House Republican leaders have insisting that raising taxes on the nation’s top earners would stifle job creation and economic growth. They prefer to raise revenue through overhauling the tax code — they have constantly proposed lowering rates and broadening the base of taxpayers.

Increasing taxes — or imposing a surcharge — on the nation’s super-wealthy has long been the province of Democrats ranging from Senate leaders such as Harry Reid of Nevada to President Barack Obama. Republicans have privately scoffed at a surcharge, and its prospects are uncertain even in the Democratically controlled Senate.

Even when Republicans have said they would consider revenue, raising rates has always been off the table. Grover Norquist, the president of Americans for Tax Reform, has been vocal in trying to keep Republicans away from hiking rates.

But Crawford’s plan signals a shift, and will certainly spark conversation on Capitol Hill among conservatives, who have been divided on many issues this year, but rarely on increasing taxes.

According to a source close to the Arkansan, the lawmaker “feels that if were going to make any progress in addressing the deficit and the debt eventually, then we need to find compromise.”

Tags: Rick Crawford, higher taxes, millionaires, surtax, class warfare, Arkansas, Republican, 1st District

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