The Cycle | July 11, 2012
>>> this is the sort of thing that used to be in the democratic party and the times past. bill clinton called himself a new democrat. he put that behind him.
>> okay. that right there is the definition of fake history. mitt romney talking in colorado yesterday about president obama 's call to end the bush tax cuts for the top 2%. i get what he is doing. it is what republicans have been doing since obama usurped the clinton in the democratic party . a model of responsible moderate leadership because it makes the current democratic president seem that much more radical and dangerous. here is the problem. what barack obama is proposing on taxes is exactly what bill clinton did on taxes. the story goes like this. clinton ran for president in 1992 . the economy is struggling, defer sits soaring. the problem with the president, the wealthiest americans the ones that got richer by the mid middle class . his budget raised rates on the top 2%. putting them at 36%. how do republicans react? the exact same way they are reacting to obama as plan today. every single one of them in the house and senate voted against it. this is that your dire forecast back in 1993 .
>> i feel particularly bad tonight, not for the upper income people who may have to pay more. i feel bad for the people really are the working people of this country. people in may family who will be the -- who, unfortunately, are going to get the penalties from people that don't want to invest more, take any more risks, and they are going to lose their jobs. and that's the tragedy of this program tonight.
>> that was john kasich . he was wrong back then, badly wrong. unemployment rate was 6.9% when clinton signed that budget. by the next summer it was under 6% and kept falling for years to come all the way to under 4% in 2000 . clinton 's last year in office. the deficit, it fell every year, too. by 19828 country was running a is your police. by the time clinton left office we were on course to eliminate the entire national debt . today all obama is asking for is to return to those clinton era tax rates important the rich. that's it. let's be clear. this won't by itself ignite the economy. but 1990s show that marginal tax rates of 36% will not automatically lead to the doom and gloom republicans worried about back then and are once again warning about today.
>> very good.
>> that's what i got.
>> professor steve.
>> we talk about how republicans have moved so far to the right. to your point, is this kind of disproving that notion a bit?
>> it is just -- taxes are -- the history of this is in 1990 george bush sr . raised taxes. i'm talking about the deficits coming down at the end of the '90s. the other guy that should get credit is george bush sr . made the deal to raise tax necessary 1990 . what that did was set off a civil war in the republican party . in the anti-tax absolutists they were led by newt gingrich back then and guys like this. they emerged victorious from that. bush lost his re-election race in 1992 . lesson every republican took out of that 1990 tax hike was never, ever vote for another tax hike again. they never grappled with what happened in '90s. informs all of our debate and all of our discussions today because republicans hold strong to that posture and even if in the face of what happened. when we did raise tax mess the '90s.
>> i argued a lot today. i argued -- i don't have it in me.
>> i was hoping it would do this.
>> this has never happened before . this is the first on the cycle.
>> so you are on record that when we have 8.2% unemployment a tax hike is a good idea?
>> i think it will not hurt if you limit it to the richest americans and i think the same argument was made in '93. economy is still rough.