The GOP’s $1.5 trillion tax bill, which is essentially a huge tax cut for the wealthy, is very unpopular. Even after months of campaigning, majorities still disapprove of the bill. Its passage, therefore, is a potential political gift for Democrats—that is, if they take advantage of it.
Yet on Wednesday, the Washington Post’s Dave Weigel asked Rep. Joe Crowley, a member of the party leadership in the House, whether or not Democrats would run on repealing the tax bill. Crowley responded by insisting that they would focus on bringing back “balance” to the government, whatever that means. “The American people want balance, and I think that’s why we’ll be successful in the fall elections,” he told Weigel. Crowley added, “What I think is missing in all this is certainty for American workers. Their tax cuts, they run out in a few years. The tax cuts for the wealthiest corporations in the history continue in perpetuity. That’s not necessarily balanced.”
When pushed by Weigel, Crowley avoided saying that Democrats would campaign on getting rid of the GOP bill. Instead, he repeated himself: “We’re not in favor of putting the country further out of balance.”
This is so dumb and useless. We’re not dealing with complicated stuff here. Most Americans understand that the GOP’s tax bill is designed for the rich. Mealy-mouthed disavowals and calls for “balance” will only obscure the issue as companies getting billions of dollars in tax cuts tout measly raises for their workers and conservative groups spend millions of dollars to try to sell the GOP’s plan.
Democrats should campaign on repealing a regressive tax bill, replacing it with taxes on the wealthy, and spending money instead on funding for popular social programs. And then they should actually do it. Americans don’t want “balance.” They want a party that isn’t beholden to the rich.