So I’ve mentioned before I’ve been following the debt limit discussions currently going on in Washington. They came to a halt last Friday after Eric Cantor (R-VA) deciding that constantly saying that taxes SIMPLY CANNOT be part of the solution to government debt wasn’t working and everyone kept asking him to be more realistic.
That was never going to happen. His departure from the “debt commission” was planned.
GOP aides and lawmakers said House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s (R-Va.) decision to exit debt talks led by Vice President Biden was inevitable.
The timing of Cantor’s exit from the talks has been discussed for weeks, and senior House Republicans cast it as a natural progression for the negotiations.
“There have been discussions about when these talks need to end and when the Speaker and the president need to get in the game,” one GOP aide explained.
When the guy quit last week, he had this to say…
“There is not support in the House for a tax increase, and I don’t believe now is the time to raise taxes in light of our current economic situation,” Cantor said. “I believe it is time for the president to speak clearly and resolve the tax issue.”
What’s wild about this is that Cantor is now using the economic troubles caused by running huge deficits (created by tax cuts) and a war (paid for with…tax cuts) and lax regulation, as an argument against raising any government revenue. The doublespeak here is off the charts.
Luckily there are a couple honest Republicans out there to try and balance out this stuff. Well, former Republicans. So it takes old people who have seen the errors of their ways to make the obvious point to the oblivious masses, old people like Reagan’s budget guy.
The sickest thing here…if Obama hadn’t given in to the hostage takers last December…we wouldn’t be having this “crisis” or this discussion. The Bush Tax Cuts would be gone, and we’d be back on the path to fiscal sanity.
What’s even more wild is that about half of *actual* Republicans are rational enough to understand the governments can raise taxes to pay down government debt.
On tackling the deficit, voters by a margin of 2-to-1 support raising taxes on incomes above $250,000, with 64 percent in favor and 33 percent opposed.
Independents supported higher taxes on the wealthy by 63-34 percent; Democrats by 83-15 percent; and Republicans opposed by 43-54 percent.
This is the disconnect, BTW. Four out of ten *actual Republicans* understand how low taxes are right now, and that they can be used by governments to pay down debt. But when you get to Republican leadership, the support for any kind of taxes at all drops directly to 0%.
If you don’t understand why this is, you don’t understand how campaign finance reforms have made the Republicans a party that represents the interests of 1% of the population, but is able to use their wealth to buy 50% (and sometimes more) of the government. Sit it on this meeting to find out how that works.
Last year the Wall Street Journal reported that Cantor, the No. 2 Republican in the House, had between $1,000 and $15,000 invested in ProShares Trust Ultrashort 20+ Year Treasury EFT. The fund aggressively “shorts” long-term U.S. Treasury bonds, meaning that it performs well when U.S. debt is undesirable. (A short is when the trader hopes to profit from the decline in the value of an asset.)
According to his latest financial disclosure statement, which covers the year 2010 and has been publicly available since this spring, Cantor still has up to $15,000 in the same fund. Contacted by Salon this week, Cantor’s office gave no indication that the Virginia Republican, who has played a leading role in the debt ceiling negotiations, has divested himself of these holdings since his last filing. Unless an agreement can be reached, the U.S. could begin defaulting on its debt payments on Aug. 2. If that happens and Cantor is still invested in the fund, the value of his holdings would skyrocket.
I think we can all rest happy knowing that if the U.S. defaults on their debt, Eric Cantor will do just fine. Heck, the fund is up 3.3 percent
just since he quit last week.