Former Governor Tim Pawlenty (R–MN), national co-chair of the Romney for President campaign, appeared on CNBC yesterday and chastised President Obama for failing to lead on stopping Taxmageddon before the November election.
Pawlenty is right: Washington should stop Taxmageddon now. Heritage has been saying just that for weeks.
Speaker of the House John Boehner (R–OH) understands that Taxmageddon must be stopped soon.
In a speech this week before the Peter G. Peterson 2012 Fiscal Summit, Speaker made clear the House will vote to stop Taxmageddon before the November election:
We shouldn’t wait until New Year’s Eve to give American job creators the confidence that they aren’t going to get hit with a tax hike on New Year’s Day. Any sudden tax hike would hurt our economy, so this fall—before the election—the House of Representatives will vote to stop the largest tax increase in American history. This will give Congress time to work on broad-based tax reform that lowers rates for individuals and businesses while closing deductions, credits, and special carveouts.
The Speaker is right to have the House vote to stop Taxmageddon before the election. In fact, he shouldn’t wait until the fall. Stopping Taxmageddon should be Congress’s summer job.
There is no reason to wait and all the reasons in the world to stop Taxmageddon now. As Mohammad El-Erian, CEO of Pimco, the world’s largest bond fund, told Washington last week, the uncertainty caused by Taxmageddon lingering ominously in the not-too-distant future is hurting economic growth today.
The Speaker is also right that tax reform should follow preventing Taxmageddon. The country badly needs tax reform, but completely re-ordering the tax code isn’t going to happen before the end of the year. The right thing to do is stop Taxmageddon, which runs contrary to the purpose of tax reform, and then undertake tax reform next year.
The list of influential people going on the record in favor of stopping Taxmageddon is growing longer by the day. That’s why the conventional wisdom that Congress would deal with Taxmageddon after the election is dead wrong.