Friday, April 17, 2009

Tax Day Tea Party Protesters Are at Odds with the 58% Who Support Obama's Way

Kudos to the Houston Chronicle for its editorial today, Tea and cacophony, pointing out that the Tax Day Tea Party protesters are an extreme conservative minority, at odds with the solid 58% of CNN poll respondents who support President Obama's approach to fixing the economy with deficit spending targeted toward specific problem areas.

The Chronicle notes the bulk of the deficit was amassed during the eight years of the Bush administration, when these same conservatives shorted the government of revenue by cheering generous tax cuts and unbridled government spending--all the while failing to regulate the economy, which created larger problems for Obama to repair, including an even bigger drop in tax revenues. Part of the editorial follows:

Wednesday’s protests told Americans that a vocal minority in this country is fed up with big government spending, bailouts, wasteful budget earmarks and the probably enormous tax consequences these will bring somewhere over the horizon.

But an undisputed majority of “We the People” also elected the president now in office. And though we may bicker about the details of the economic stimulus package, polls show that a majority thinks government should take energetic measures to resuscitate our flat-lining national economy.

A recent national poll by CNN put that majority at 58 percent who support President Barack Obama’s approach on the economy, which relies on deficit spending targeted to problem areas.

Inherent in the broad support the president enjoys is a strengthening belief that government must have a role in pulling us out of the financial ditch. And herein lies the question the protesters have yet to satisfactorily answer: If not government, who?

The deficits with which Obama must contend were birthed during the Bush presidency, when generous tax cuts were not matched with equal rigor in controlling Washington’s spending.

That marked a clear failing of the ambitious Gingrich revolution, begun in 1994 with high hopes for limiting government. Alas, many of the erstwhile GOP revolutionaries in Congress were seduced by the very system of permanent incumbency they were sent to reform.

So we find ourselves engaged in this momentous debate. The protesters’ voices and ideas are welcome. But a resolute majority sees things differently.

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