7 December 2010
Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA)
Dear Sen. Landrieu:
Your negative reaction to the proposal not to raise taxes in January on upper-income Americans is – and I quote – “We’re going to borrow $46 billion from the poor, from the middle-class, from businesses of all sizes basically, to give a tax cut to families in America today that, despite the recession, are making over $1 million. This is unprecedented.”
No. Because allowing people to keep more of their own money is not itself an expense, any borrowing Uncle Sam does as a result of reduced tax revenues is a consequence of your and your colleagues’ refusal to cut spending by the amount of the revenue reduction.
Moreover (not that it matters as far as the principle is concerned), but how difficult can it be to cut $46 billion in spending from a $3.8 trillion budget? Is it really so difficult, so cruel, so illiberal to reduce federal-government spending by 1.2 percent?
Donald J. Boudreaux