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McCain Vows to Hold the Line on Taxes

By Zachary A. Goldfarb
Sen. John McCain (Ariz.), the likely Republican nominee for president who is seeking to shore up support among conservatives, said today that he would not raise taxes under any circumstances.

"In fact, I could see an argument if our economy continues to deteriorate, for lower interest rates, lower tax rates and certainly decreasing corporate tax rates, which are the second-highest in the world," McCain said on ABC's "This Week."

Even though McCain has neared locking up the GOP nomination, he still faces wariness among many fiscal conservatives because he voted twice against President Bush's tax cut proposals. Democrats have been using the tax issue, too, to take aim at McCain's reputation as a straight-talker, noting that he originally opposed the tax cuts, but later supported them, and now wants to make them permanent.

"I admired Senator McCain when he stood up and said that it offended his conscience to support the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy in a time of war," Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) said last week. "But somewhere along the road to the Republican nomination, the Straight Talk Express lost its wheels, because now he's all for those same tax cuts."

McCain replied that he has wanted the tax cuts to be made permanent "for a long time" but that he has also long argued that Congress needs to restrain spending.

"Spending restraint is why our base is not energized. Spending restraint is why we are having to borrow money from China, and we've got to have spending restraints," McCain said. "But to impose on the American people what essentially would be a tax increase of thousands of dollars per family in America is not something I think -- well, I'm sure would be bad for the economy of this country."

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By Post Editor  |  February 17, 2008; 4:21 PM ET
Categories:  Sunday Talkies  
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LOL! :-0

I prefer to Bite, over Shilling!

I really like to Bite Shillers!

Favorite Flavor? Libbie Shills! ;~)

Posted by: rat-the | February 18, 2008 10:27 PM | Report abuse

Bethidee. I said many, not specifying any particular one. But the reality of politics is that some are shills and you should be aware of that. My view? Both O and C have so damaged each other and cemented in the minds of many, Dems, Repubs and independents alike, all the reasons the other would not make a good president. They've done a better job on each other than the GOP ever could. It's time for Democrat voters, past as well as those yet to vote, to sit back, take a look at their damaged candidates, neither of which could now repair the Humpty-Dumpty egg they have splintered, and choose at the convention another who could unite it as well as attract others. In fact, I wonder if the GOP has already considered that strong possibility and are creating dossiers of others that might be chosen to have a ready counterattack. Who would you choose in that event? Gore? Bloomberg? I wish Powell could be persuaded. Early drop outs who were short of funds but not experience and abilities, some superior to those continuing to hurt one another more. But...No shills in these many articles with comments following? This is politics.

Posted by: Valjean1 | February 18, 2008 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Well, for the record Valjean1, I am an ordinary person weighing in with my view. I am not a shill- if my viewpoint sounds well-rehearsed, it's because I've gotten used to promoting my candidate in forums like these...but the words are mine.
If this election is notable for nothing else, it is for the fact that many people are paying close attention and engaging themselves for the first time in many years. That's a good thing!

Posted by: bethidee | February 18, 2008 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Congress doesn't restrain spending. It reduces or eliminates programs that lead to less spending. Stating that spending should be brought down without saying which programs should be reduced or eliminated and who currently benefits from them is meaningless. It just says whack that person over there without saying who that person is. Just citing "waste" is just as meaningless and shows the one citing it has nothing meaningful to say. Specifics count. Dodging them is a cop out.

Posted by: Valjean1 | February 18, 2008 10:53 AM | Report abuse

Many comments appear to be shills for the candidate being promoted reciting pre-set talking points rather than ordinary people weighing in with their view. Shills aren't limited to eBay.

Posted by: Valjean1 | February 18, 2008 10:45 AM | Report abuse

Instead of only one candidate, there is still a choice which the media fails to point out. Mike Huckabee is still in the race...

Huckabee is President for me

Posted by: aseatonusa | February 18, 2008 10:02 AM | Report abuse


To say "no new taxes" is fine, however it is an oversimplification. If instead of my dollar being spent by the government to restore infrastructure (for instance), or pay off debt (for instance), it goes to buying something that ends up in the dump two weeks later, which expenditure is more apt to take us out of this economic slump? IN OTHER WORDS, money has to be put to good use for it to be productive.

And to say "no new taxes" shows little confidence in the very government you are trying to form. It's not about how much you take in as putting a cap on SPENDING, and not wasting it on wars that accomplish nothing!

Posted by: xira | February 18, 2008 9:32 AM | Report abuse

Lower corporate taxes which is the second highest in the world? May be true and etc. but why not ask Tom Perkins to sell his boat to help to pay for an Iraq war that USA's taxpayers could have done well without? Some news organizations did indeed seem to hsve put quite an effort to systematically discredit those who opposed it or just asked doubtful questions when the decision for the invasion was up...

Posted by: josalli | February 18, 2008 9:28 AM | Report abuse

Who's McCain kidding?

ALL politicians promise "no new taxes."

Where's all the money gonna come from to pay for the 100 years war? The money to bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran? Oh wait, he can just print some more. Pshhh! DUH...

Posted by: kogejoe | February 18, 2008 8:59 AM | Report abuse

rat-the, all that would make sense if it were true. THIS is Huckabee's stand on illegal immigration- and it's the toughest out there:
For the millionth time: Huckabee's campaign is NOT about religion. He is supported by all types of people of all faiths, and some atheists, too. It's not an attempt at theocracy. It's not about Christianity. It's about voting for a man of integrity whose platform we find to be the best for the future of America.
If you'd put aside your prejudices for a minute and do some research, you'd find Huckabee is nothing like your misperception.

Posted by: bethidee | February 18, 2008 8:52 AM | Report abuse

He still doesn't get it. We want less taxation not the amount of taxation we have now. We want no war, no illegal immigration, less spending, and a smaller federal government. McCain's inability to hear the American people is frightening. What dimension does he live in?

What about "The Button"? No one talks about The Button anymore but it still exists. Would anyone want this nut's finger on The Button that launches a nuclear strike?

Posted by: websmith1 | February 18, 2008 1:41 AM | Report abuse

McCain walked the walk by not having earmarks in the Budget. He is talking the talk by promising to veto appropriations with earmarks. We could have financed a three fence barrier on the Border at $10 million per mile for its 1,952 miles.

Making President Bush's tax cuts permanent is useful, but if the government borrows, tightening credit or devalues the dollar by printing more money, all that does is to cause more inflation.

In real dollars we lose either way more than a tax cut provides. For those on a fixed income, it is a dead loss.

When government is 15% of the Gross Domestic Product, there is economic growth. We are at 18% and will be at 21% in the next two years, if government continues to grow as a portion of the Gross National Product at the present rate of growth.

Posted by: omarkhyam1951 | February 18, 2008 12:47 AM | Report abuse

How do you spell pander? M.c.C.A.I.N.
That's straight talk.

Posted by: thebobbob | February 18, 2008 12:34 AM | Report abuse

Bethidee-I forgot to address your misguided claim about al-Huckster's stance on Illegal Immigrants. He supports a type of Walk accross, then walk back legally Amnesty, while rewarding their offspring with subsidized College!

That is what you call TOUGH?

Understand, the whole thing is an EMPLOYMENT Issue.

Bust, and Fine the criminal Employers not properly filing W-4's, and the illegals will become un-employed, and GO HOME!

Ignore the fact, and it will just keep GETTING WORSE! ;~)

Posted by: rat-the | February 17, 2008 11:27 PM | Report abuse

bethidee-I also have serious qualms with McCain. However, I have a serious dislike for al-Huckleberry. His little American version of a Shia Sectarian type Power grab, based almost entirely on Religious affiliation, REALLY CHAPS MY CATHOLIC HIDE!

As far as "Conservatives", Team McCain up with Mitt Romney, and we can take solace in the Fact that we have a bonofide Military Man, as Commander in Chief, and he has a "Brain" WITH Him! ;~)

McCain/ Mittster yes, McCain/ Huckleberry-NO-NO-NO!

Posted by: rat-the | February 17, 2008 11:22 PM | Report abuse

The Democrats have been in control for over a year now and their inaction has caused the economy to falter.

To get the economy running again, taxes will need to be cut.

Running a deficit in and of itself is not a bad thing but using borrowed money to buy stupid things is unconsciousable.

And for all you screwy anti-war activists, do you really want Saddam back?

Posted by: thetroubles | February 17, 2008 10:38 PM | Report abuse

As I recall, the now democratically controlled house and senate assured the American people that they would end the war. I see they can't do it either as it has been a year. In their defense, the surge appears to be making a huge difference and so to pull the plug when finally some progress would be as gross a judgment as starting a war with no gameplan. I should point out that Barack has made it clear he will slowly remove the troops out of Iraq when feasible, but in doing so will look to use force on Pakistan in order to find OBL and/or fight the terrorists there. My point being, that the "war" will continue whether it is in Iraq or elsewhere. The American people have a tendency to hear only what they want thinking that electing a democrat will assure them of no wars. Maybe once upon a time that was true, but when we take our eye off the ball 9/11 is what happens. As far as how to pay for things...well I am astounded every single year that we have not yet gone bankrupt. The spending in Washington which includes both parties, is just like the average joe. Few people today live within their means which is now seen with the many mortgage defaults. The state of MN was in very bad shape after voters went nuts and voted in Jesse as the candidate of change. Gov Pawlenty inherited a 4.5 budget deficit from Jesse but was able to balance the budget in 2005 and 2007 without raising taxes. Of course many states are now facing shortfall due to the housing crunch and so either taxes must be raised, or services reduced, or reserves drawn down. Raising taxes on those that actually pay taxes in this country which is getting to be a smaller number with each passing day, is a bad idea. My suggestion to everybody is to personally start a business as my family has done the past couple years to get a first hand understanding of how to increase sales, provide good working conditions for employees, and most of all learn to work more efficiently by sourcing better and keeping payroll costs down even during economic downturns. The amount of waste in this country is staggering and it begins with each local municipality and balloons in Washington. Start by looking at your local budgets and see where the waste is there. I guarantee the numbers will be a real eye opener. Fiscal restraint should be the top priority for any government.

Posted by: jkachmar | February 17, 2008 9:20 PM | Report abuse

Um, rat-the:
You are quite incorrect in your criticism of marinepatriot. If you were familiar with the big picture, you'd know that Huckabee doesn't have to secure 1191 delegates prior to the convention...just to prevent McCain from doing so. Then, we have a brokered convention. It's certainly happened before- and it SHOULD happen this year- because millions of Republicans are NOT happy with the candidate being shoved down our throats.

Posted by: bethidee | February 17, 2008 9:01 PM | Report abuse

MARINEPATRIOT-LOL! There is an article written about you!

You, and every other al-Huckleberry fan who does not understand al-Huckleberry cannot Mathematically Win! :-(

Good news though! If you move to Antarctica, you will shine among the Penguins! ;~)

Posted by: rat-the | February 17, 2008 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Oh, great. Read his tiny little old man lips.
Millions of Republicans are not settling for the candidate the GOP has tried to shove down our throats! Conservatives, let your voice be heard, Cast your vote for the ONLY conservative left: Governor Huckabee. We need and deserve a place at the table at this convention- it's vital- and you can make it happen.
Mike Huckabee is the only candidate with a tough stand on illegal immigration (and a thorough plan to address it), the candidate who stands for Second Amendment rights, the candidate who believes in American sovereignty, who has an excellent plan to rejuvenate this country's economy...and who never flip-flops on his principles. He's also the only one with true executive credentials, as opposed to years of legislative experience as a Washington insider. Please: Wisconsin, Texas, and all the states with Republican Primaries to come: we are counting on you to stand up for what is right.

Posted by: bethidee | February 17, 2008 7:48 PM | Report abuse

Fine no new taxes, I want to see how he plans to drastically cut spending then. And don't tell me earmarks, because that ain't gonna cut it.

Posted by: sminersc | February 17, 2008 7:25 PM | Report abuse

Most polls show Huckabee and Mccain in a statistical dead heat and Huckabee keeps gaining momentum!

The experts say they can not explain it, because a normal "presumptive front-runner" should have like a 70% to 15% lead at this point.

I guess there is a lot more to Mike Huckabee than they want to admit. The people pick Huckabee, and we want Huckabee to be President!

Posted by: marinepatriot | February 17, 2008 6:57 PM | Report abuse

The economy IS going to deteriorate, it just got delayed a little due to the patches right before elections.

Seems like Bush, I mean McCain is learning the game pretty good with his about faces.

Poor guy made himself vote against the prohibition of torture, when before he was totally against torture due to his real life experiences.

Wonder what makes a man go against his own moral beliefs? Too bad these candidates can't manage to be true to themselves ...with the exception of Dr. Ron Paul of course.

Posted by: GatorVol | February 17, 2008 6:32 PM | Report abuse

What about the "Deflation Tax" 50% in 7 years. Bush said no new taxes too.
And how is McCain going to pay for the 100 year war. At $300 Billion/yr
The Problem is SPENDING by the GOVERNMENT when they print Trillions of dollars to Give Iraqi Freedom and Bailout Bush Buddies from their FRAUD on each other. Covering up their criminal acts with more criminal acts. When the president and congress lie cheat and steal, it set the example for Investment companies, Banks, investors and borrowers. All this spending and corruption, caused the Arabs to look at the real value of dollar. Devalued the Dollar which is why the Oil price shot up. Call it the "Oil Standard" with the falling dollar it could go to $200/bbl. Almost 10 times what it was when Bush took office. Thus the price of everything imported went up the same amount, because we are buying with dollars that are worth less. Your House, stocks, retirement funds everything tied to the dollar is worth less 50% less in 7 years. Thanks to Bush and Congress. Impeach Bush and Congress. Elect Ron Paul President

Posted by: Tane55 | February 17, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

How is he going to pay for his 100 year war in Iraq?

There is no worse for of socialism than gun ho Republican.

Posted by: edantes | February 17, 2008 5:48 PM | Report abuse

Didn't we hear this kind of talk once before. Something to do with reading lips.

Posted by: KYJurisDoctor | February 17, 2008 5:37 PM | Report abuse

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