Friday, April 25, 2008

Eric Canter a Fiscal Conservative?—No Way

Well, the letter in this morning’s TD entitled “Cantor Speaks Truth to Big Spenders,” does not merit the Maven’s most wonderful letter of the day award. But I do need to respond to it. The writer discusses the philosophical differences between representatives Eric Cantor and Jim Moran “and their parties.” The writer concludes that Mr. Cantor and the Republicans want to reduce spending and taxes while Mr. Moran and the Democrats want to increase both.

Unfortunately, our author only looks to Mr. Cantor’s rhetoric and not to his actions. We need to look at some facts.

Mr. Cantor and George W. Bush, the leader of his party, were elected on the same Election Day. They both entered into federal service during the same January 2001. At that time our Federal Government carried a debt of $5,727,776,738,304.64 or about 5.7 trillion dollars. That sure was a lot of debt. But wait, as of today the debt of our Federal Government is (drum roll) $9,341,527,250,070.24 or about 9.3 trillion dollars. My calculator tells me that this amounts to an increase of about 3.6 trillion dollars. So Mr. Cantor and Mr. Bush, during their brief seven plus year sojourn in Washington have increased the amount of money that every man, woman and child in the United States owes by about 63%.

Wait, our author might say. Maven, you’re being unfair blaming this on Mr. Cantor. Everybody knows that it is the Democrats that like to spend, spend, spend, and that it’s the Republicans that want to cut taxes.

Eric Cantor cannot deny that he has been one of President Bush’s most loyal followers in the House of Representatives. He did not get to the top of the heap in the Republican leadership by being a maverick. He has consistently voted for Mr. Bush’s tax cuts and for thirteen annual appropriations acts every year since he has been in Congress. I know of no instance during the six years when he was in the majority when Mr. Cantor complained of pork barrel spending by his own party. It is only when the electorate made the congressional Republicans into the minority party that Mr. Cantor suddenly became concerned by wasteful spending. And, as for cutting taxes, as I pointed out on this blog nearly two years ago,

The Republicans claim they are fiscally responsible. They claim they have lowered taxes. Come on RNC. Are the actions of Mr. Bush and his Republican congressional cohorts really resulting in lower taxes? Hell no! They have merely moved the tax burden from themselves to a future generation. Eventually some one has to pay off that debt. Their spend now-pay later philosophy is the farthest thing from fiscal responsibility I can think of. 1

Every year that Eric Cantor has been in Congress he has raised taxes on our children and grandchildren by spending more money than we have. It is quite that simple. If our author thinks that makes Mr. Cantor a fiscal conservative, he needs to think again.

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