Read my lips: no new taxes

Here’s some interesting news from just yesterday for those capable of learning from history: George H.W. Bush honored for courage with 1990 tax hikes, honoured by Democrats, that is:

Former U.S. President George H.W. Bush showed courage in breaking his “read my lips: no new taxes” campaign pledge to broker a 1990 budget compromise that may have cost him re-election two years later, the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation said on Sunday.

The organization honored the 41st U.S. president with its 2014 Profile in Courage Award, praising the Republican leader’s “decision to put country above party and political prospects” in the deal with congressional Democrats.

“America’s gain was President Bush’s loss,” Jack Schlossberg, grandson of former president John F. Kennedy and a member of the award committee, said during a ceremony at the library in Boston. . . .

In September 1990, two years into George H.W. Bush’s first term, the United States was saddled with a $200 billion budget deficit. Months of partisan wrangling over possible tax increases and spending cuts had ended in a stalemate.

Despite the potential political backlash, Bush announced a compromise with congressional Democrats that would cut $500 billion from the deficit in five years, in part by raising “luxury taxes” on items including yachts and pricey cars, among other tax hikes.

“The time for politics and posturing is over,” Bush said in an October 1990 speech. “The time to come together is now.”

The budget passed, but Bush’s concession on a tax increase rankled members of his party and stood at odds with his “no new taxes” campaign promise. He lost re-election to Democrat Bill Clinton in 1992.

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17 Responses to Read my lips: no new taxes

  1. johno

    One hopes Commonwealth Cabinet Ministers are contemplating this story.

    He broke an election promise, increased taxes, lost the election and is honored by his opponents.

    Not a legacy to be proud of.

  2. Tel

    Then Bush the younger came along and decided that deficits don’t matter so here we are today, with big deficits that don’t matter. Look over there!

  3. .

    You can’t appease a socialist crocodile.

  4. .

    Australia has a myriad of high and inefficient taxes which cascade onto producers and consumers.

    Any budget which requires tax hikes is a crisis by virtue of further damaging productive capacity.

    A minimum wage worker is lucky to see 40% of the full cost of their wage bill. it is taxed on the production side, taxed as it is given to them and what is leftover is taxed.

    If taxes were halved, their real wage would almost double for no cost.

  5. Rabz

    Former U.S. President George H.W. Bush showed courage in breaking his “read my lips: no new taxes”

    It lead to this legendary pisstake.

  6. Eyrie

    He lost to Bill Clinton……..and it has been all downhill from there.

  7. Anne

    That’s really funny Rabz. I hadn’t seen that.

  8. I am the Walrus, koo koo k'choo

    Four opinion polls are showing sharp slumps in support for the coalition and in satisfaction with Tony Abbott, following the announcement of the tax increase proposal.

    Exactly as predicted here at Catallaxy. Predictions which stackja and some others derided as helping the ALP.

    Meanwhile, morons like numbers, whom the tax increase is meant to placate, think that the budget crisis is being ‘made up’.

    These people are supposed to be experienced politicians. And yet they don’t know the first thing about retail politics.

    How on earth did he ever get to Oxford??

    Seeya Tony, seeya Sloppy Joe. Was nice knowin ya.

  9. I am the Walrus, koo koo k'choo

    I meant to add, the slumps are as sharp as those seen for Juliar and the ALP just after she announced the carbon dioxide tax.

  10. I’m still waiting for the budget to come out, mainly because I’m an optimist. But if Baked Beans are on special at the shops, I’m stocking up.

  11. Vicki

    It’s all there in the polls this morning. Such a stupid miscalculation if they stubbornly go ahead with it.

  12. Token

    Here’s some interesting news from just yesterday for those capable of learning from history

    The “Award” was covered in early April when it was announced. It is really valuable to understand some important “qualifiers” which the left of course leaves out:

    …It is disheartening that liberals consider it “courageous” to break one’s word with voters. As Jonathan Tobin of Commentary notes: “At stake here is not so much the 41st president’s honor, but the sanctity of political promises as well as the principle of fiscal prudence that was at the heart of his shameless and ultimately self-destructive decision to repudiate that famous promise.”

    The budget deal that Bush struck with Democrat House and Senate elders in 1990 stipulated there would be $2 in spending cuts for every $1 in tax increases. Every penny of the tax increases was delivered, but Democrats actually spent $23 billion above the pre-budget-deal spending baseline. President Bush saw his party lose seats in the 1990 midterm election, and in 1992 millions of fiscal conservatives deserted him in favor of Ross Perot’s independent presidential bid. In 1992, Bush won only 38 percent of the vote, down from the 54 percent he had won in 1988. That represented the greatest loss of support suffered by an incumbent president since Herbert Hoover.

    Bush realized the error of his ways during the 1992 campaign: “I’m very disappointed with Congress. I thought this one compromise — and it was a compromise — would result in no more tax increases. I thought it would result in total control of domestic discretionary spending. And now we see Congress talking about raising taxes again. So I’m disappointed, and given all of that, yes, a mistake.” But Democrats at the time were only too happy to not only slam Bush for violating his pledge, but also to snicker about his naïveté behind his back. Now — a quarter century later — they propose to honor him.

    This is a great lesson about doing deals with the left. The will trash the promise & then exploit the agreement to the fullest.

    The fact the Kennedy Foundation is “honouring” GHW Bush for letting himself be lied to and betrayed by the DNC shows how they really are enjoying rubbing salt into the wounds.

  13. Token

    Four opinion polls are showing sharp slumps in support for the coalition and in satisfaction with Tony Abbott, following the announcement of the tax increase proposal.

    Exactly as predicted here at Catallaxy. Predictions which stackja and some others derided as helping the ALP.

    It is wise that Steve Kates raise the Kennedy Award so someone can tell the Labor-Lite Class Warfare warriors about the lessons of history:

    1. The base will abandon the party
    2. The left will hate the person, sneer at their naivity & then ensure they are reminded of their stupidity throughout the rest of their lives

  14. coz

    Abbott imposed a new tax on the poor as soon as he was elected, he raised the tax on cigarettes (yeah krudd set it up, and Tone kicked the goal) and the majority of cigarette smokers are the poor, disaffected and mentally ill. Now it’s the wealthy people’s turn so pay up, you scrooges, poor smokers have been paying huge amounts of tax for a coupla decades now, so pull your weight.

  15. truth

    Bush 41 had votes siphoned off to spoiler Ross Perot and no preference system to mitigate that.

    Had it not been for Perot, and the MSM infatuation with Clinton, Bush would probably have had a second term —there would have been no sub-prime loans debacle —no repealing of the Glass-Steagall Act—-possibly no megabanks and no dodgy securities —-no GFC—and a much smaller US debt and deficit.

  16. JC

    STFU Coz, you’re just embittered and by now very very drunk.

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