Make Schumer and Pelosi Defend Tax Deductions for the Rich

November 22nd, 2011 at 1:04 am | 67 Comments |

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Michael Barone points out the three big tax deductions which are hard to eliminate: the charitable deduction, the home mortgage interest deduction, and the state and local tax deduction.

I agree with him that elimination of the charitable deduction is wrong for Republicans. Home mortgage deductions could be eliminated for loans over $500,000 without eliminating middle class home ownership. (Though it would affect the building trades). But the real gold and political opportunity for Republicans is in State and local taxes.

As Michael points out, the highest earners who benefit the most from this deduction live in New York and California and vote Democratic. The most powerful and demagogic politicians from those states include Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer and Barbara Boxer (millionaires all!). Other states with high tax state and local taxes are New Jersey, Maryland, and Massachusetts. The tax foundation calculates that the state’s with the highest tax burden are New Jersey, New York, Maryland, Connecticut and Hawaii. Not coincidentally, not one Republican Senator exists in those states.

The long term economic benefits of such a move are obvious. First, it creates incentives to keep state tax burdens low by, for instance, paying state workers market rates. It lowers the deficit and makes federal receipts less dependent on state tax decisions. It creates incentives for people to move from high tax areas to more productive low tax areas.

The political benefits for Republicans are even greater. Imagine the arguments of Chuck Schumer, Nancy Pelosi and Barney Frank opposing this proposal. They would either have to adopt Republican arguments (strengthening those arguments on the nature of taxes) or accept Republican proposals(fracturing their own base). The reduction or elimination of such deductions would set the “gentry liberals” and the government unions-natural Democratic allies-at each others throats.

The gentry liberals are often the high earners in democratic states most likely to be affected by the elimination of such deductions. The government unions are those who benefit when states are more insulated from the consequences of high cost government. The removal of the deduction would put pressure on those unions as states tried to cut costs. Moreover, for states that did not get the message, the movement of population away from them and towards states that did would accelerate the strengthening of Republicans in the House.

The best move for Republicans would be a gradual move to reduce the deduction. At first eliminate the deduction of state and local taxes for millionaires. Then work down from there. The issue would be alive for many election cycles-sapping Democratic strength each time. Those who pay no federal taxes would wonder why the Democrats were spending so much energy defending the rich. Democrats in the Far West, South, and Midwest would have to cast unpopular votes to support filibusters or votes protecting Hollywood fat cats and Wall Street denizens like John Corzine.

To the extent it was implemented it would create more synergies for Republicans. High earning liberal democrats would note they were paying even a more disproportionate share of the federal and state budget. Some might move to Republican states bolstering the tax base. In order to keep them, liberal states would be pressured to lower taxes and the size of local government.

No possible other proposal could so cause “confusion to the enemy” as the reduction or elimination of the state and local tax deduction. It would create stresses on the Democrats nationally by splitting Coastal from Western and Southern Democrats. It would put stresses on the Democratic coalition within states by severing the gentry liberals from the government unions. And it would also be a hard sell to the Democratic constituencies that pay no taxes. The more time the Democrats spent on defending the deduction the more alienated the non-taxpayers would be. Democrats have promised this part of the coalition “free money” for years. How can they explain cutting off a source of such “free money?”

This is a golden opportunity to 1) make the worst Democrats look bad 2) demoralize and divide the Democratic coalition nationwide; 3) demonstrate the rightness of the Republican view of taxes and incentives from the very mouths of its opponents; 4) tax liberals, 5) and to create a long term engine for lower taxes among the states. Even Grover Norquist should see the beauty of this, especially if it allowed a reduction in marginal rates.

Recent Posts by John Vecchione



67 Comments so far ↓

  • Kevin B

    Count me in. While you’re at it, try to cast paying taxes as the patriotic thing to do. That’ll make the Democrats squirm.

    • more5600

      Wasn’t it Joe Biden who claimed paying taxes was patriotic and wasn’t he vilified for it by the Right?

  • Rabiner

    You have to eliminate the home deduction for everyone or leave it at a higher value than $500,000 due to the fact that many urban areas with middle income families would be hit unduly by the change. The West Coast, Chicago, and Mid-Atlantic states up to New England would be hammered by this change while it would have virtually no impact on the South, most of the Midwest or Mountain West.

    Same with eliminating the deduction for State and Local taxes which harms states and localities that actually provide services to their constituents and allow for reasonable safety nets.

    All I see from your article is not good policy and not even good politics.

    “The issue would be alive for many election cycles-sapping Democratic strength each time. Those who pay no federal taxes would wonder why the Democrats were spending so much energy defending the rich. ”

    You ignore that States would have to cut programs that help the poor like expanded Medicaid eligibility, food stamps, unemployment insurance and the like which would be rolled back if such a change occurred.

    • hisgirlfriday

      The West Coast, Chicago, and Mid-Atlantic states up to New England would be hammered by this change while it would have virtually no impact on the South, most of the Midwest or Mountain West.

      I guess you didn’t notice that’s not a defect as far as Vecchione is concerned. That’s a feature of his plan.

      West Coasters, Chicagoans and East Coasters don’t vote the way Vecchione wants so he seeks to use tax policy to punish them for not voting the way he wants. He also wants to drive them away from their homes and their families into “more productive low tax areas” in the South or Great Plains where they can add more electoral votes to the GOP in the next census. Doesn’t matter if these places will offer transplants lower wages, worse schools, worse transportation, less cultural fulfillment, etc… It’s all about getting the GOP partisan advantage.

      Disgusting, sure, but that’s Vecchione!

      • Fart Carbuncle

        I wouldn’t envy the west coast, east coast, or Chicago. Massive problems caused by years of socialism.

        You sound like an Obot.

        • Crime Dog

          I know everyone up here is really jealous of those powerhouse states like Mississippi and Arkansas!

    • DeathByIrony

      I’d have to agree. This isn’t even good politics.
      And aren’t state matters up to state government? Or is the author suggesting a tremendous intrusion into state’s rights for the sake of shaking up the liberals a little? Absurd.

  • Rabiner

    “This is a golden opportunity to 1) make the worst Democrats look bad 2) demoralize and divide the Democratic coalition nationwide; 3) demonstrate the rightness of the Republican view of taxes and incentives from the very mouths of its opponents; 4) tax liberals, 5) and to create a long term engine for lower taxes among the states. Even Grover Norquist should see the beauty of this, especially if it allowed a reduction in marginal rates.”

    You’re stated policy goes is to 4) tax liberals? Really? that’s your idea of governance? Your desire to piss off the other side is Un-American in my viewpoint.

    • Biped

      I had the same thought as Rabiner. Getting sick of all this party before country crap.

    • Reflection Ephemeral

      How much money would this proposal raise? Would it have any negative impact that we should be conscious of, in order to redesign or refrain from applying this policy?

      Vecchione doesn’t even bother to ask the basic questions about his “policy.”

      This is typical of Republican thinking. Republicans do not care about America.

      They can’t be bothered to do any work to determine whether a policy proposal will make Americans’ lives better. Is the individual mandate, which was created by the Heritage Foundation and the cornerstone of GOP health proposals for two decades a good idea? Not relevant, at all, to today’s Republican Party. A Democratic president has proposed it, so the interests of The Party demand that it be demonized.

      Republicans simply have out groups to hate.

      Vecchione fantasizes that this policy will make some Democrats mad, so he embraces it. Its actual impact on Americans is quite beside the point.

      • IndyVoter

        I recently heard Norm Orenstein of the American Enterprise Institute speak here in Minneapolis on the corrosive effects of the emerging political “tribalism” in American Politics. When asked whether both parties were equally at fault, he used a wonderful term in making the case that (this will be a surprise) the GOP was more at fault and this argument that both parties were equally at fault was “a false equivalency”.

        Sadly, this article shows the corrosive political tribalism of the GOP in full bloom. How about “America First” for a change!!

        Note: I personally favor getting rid of all three tax deductions, including state income tax deductions (and I live in Minnesota, so this is no small thing) and having a more efficient and fairer progressive tax system with lower marginal rates, and some shift from taxing income to taxation on consumption.

  • rbottoms

    Ah, another “who gives a f*ck if it’s a cynical bullsh*t tactic that will cause long term disruption” just so long as it hurts Democrats in New York and California.

  • Crime Dog

    As long as our money doesn’t go into the pockets of neo-Confederates I’m fine with it.

  • valkayec

    JJV, you forgot how your plan affects the many millions of middle income working Americans who have seen their incomes decrease over the last decade or three…or maybe they don’t count in your political games playing?

    Shame on you.

  • heap

    who needs policy when you have spite.

  • Ogemaniac

    Let’s go for it. Dems will counter with putting forth a bill to restore the military spending lost by the Super Committee failure, and pay for it with the immediate repeal of the Bush tax cuts on those earning over $250,000.

    Let’s see where conservative’s true allegience lies.

  • SteveThompson

    One change to taxation that is currently not on Washington’s radar screen is an increase in gasoline excise taxes. Americans pay among the lowest level of taxes on gasoline in the world, less than one-tenth of that paid in Europe as shown here:

    http://viableopposition.blogspot.com/2011/09/americas-gasoline-excise-tax-mighty.html

    We may find that Congress is going to be very tempted to raise gasoline excise taxes to achieve the fiscal balance they so badly need.

    • Crime Dog

      Will never happen. Almost every economist–liberal and conservative–is in favor of it but Americans love to drive too much.

  • producer

    nice. to hell with governance. let’s just inflict as much pain as possible on as many people as possible. really big republican fun.

  • dante

    Only JV could take a worthwhile premise (ending deductions on the rich) and turn it into some hyper-partisan “gotcha” article. Thanks for reminding me why I don’t read your articles…

  • ottovbvs

    Wouldn’t this be class warfare? Talk about grasping at straws. Obviously this is going nowhere but it’s interesting insight into the mindset of Vecchione and it’s disinterest in substance and focus on inflicting harm. It hurts democrats and raises Barbra Streisand’s tax bill what could be wrong with that. These people really are cretinous. But before Vecchione gets too enthusiastic he might want to remember a heck of a lot of Republican financial industry executives living in Chappaqua and Greenwich and similar places are going to really burned by both the mortgage interest and state tax caps.

  • Watusie

    What do clueless Republicans like Rick Perry, Herman Cain and Vecchione do? They try to make it all about Nancy Pelosi.

    Frum, how does giving this infant posting privileges help with your mission of modernizing the Republican Party?

    • Nanotek

      or growing FF traffic?

      this jv post made the least sense of anything I’ve read on FF

      FF advocates that conservatives argue to eliminate the federal income tax deduction for state and local taxes, in order to trick us liberals? that’s where FF sets the bar?

  • Sinan

    The GOP wants all the states to cut all programs, pay their employees very little, cut taxes and become the conservative heaven that is Mississippi, Alabama or Texas. As a life long Californian, the best thing that could possibly happen to us would be for millions to move out of state as soon as possible. How about 10 million right wing conservatives from OC or the inland empire just decide to pack it in and take themselves to lovely Birmingham or Houston? We are around 36 million folks right now. 26 million sounds like a great number to me.

  • LauraNo

    I like how you sneak in there the assertion that blue state’s workers are not earning ‘market rates’ without having to make the case, any case, at all. Whatever they earn IS market rate and the poor non-union slobs are earning below market rates. See how this goes? I made an assertion. You are not here to answer it, so I win.

  • LauraNo

    Something else: if ‘conservatives’, (aka here as liberal haters) think they can tax one group of folk more than their own group, they should worry about turning tables. If this ever comes to pass, I will be loudly insisting on all the welfare states giving every extra penny they get from me back. And let’s close them damn military bases sprinkled all over the south while we’re at it.

  • Frumplestiltskin

    I tell you what, I would agree to this if we have a Constitutional amendment that states no state shall receive more than 110% of what they pay in, and no state pays more than 90% of what they get back. NY, NJ, etc. would have no need to deduct the state and local taxes as the money they would save would be a huge windfall. Parasite states like Miss., Alabama, Louisiana would then be forced to raise their own state and local taxes to make up for the shortfall.

    But JJV would never agree with this as it would represent the ruination of the Republican party across America. No, he wants Democratic states to fund his parasitism.

    So how about it JJV, are you ready to make this grand bargain or are you happy that liberals subsidize deep fried southern parasites forever?

    • Traveler

      “Deep fried Southern parasites” . Priceless. Especially when global warming really hits.

  • Graychin

    I don’t think Pelosi or Schumer or Obama would object to elimination of the deduction for state income taxes, or the alternative deduction for sales taxes. Let’s throw in the property tax deduction while we’re at it. Clearly, this would affect high-income taxpayers the most, no matter where they live! The 1%!

    The 1% living in blue states who would object probably vote Republican anyway. Warren Buffet in Red Nebraska wouldn’t mind. Neither would Barbra Streisand in Blue Califurnia.

    JV must have cut his teeth on Nixonian politics. Punish your enemies. Party first.

  • icarusr

    I think you are all missing the point of Vecchione’s articles. They serve, so far as I can tell, three purposes.

    First, to the unitiated red-meat Republican, it demonstrates FrumForum’s “Republican” roots. In that sense, Vecchione is akin to a random “Conservo-nutto-bot”, generating increasingly lunatic, inaccurate and partisan “conservative” articles to simply make sure people don’t forget that this is a Republican web-site.

    Second, the articles, for all their silliness, generate traffic – just the number of people writing to correct the, er, errors and omissions, is enough to make these articles, and the related site, popular.

    Third, the articles are, in many ways, peudo-Swiftian Performance Art. Now, there are those among you who might say that it can’t be art if the “artist” is not aware that he is actually “peroforming” as one – that, in essence, Swiftian satire is satire properly so called where the ironies are intended. Well, I say pshaw to that: art is art received and not art made; Vecchione is, in this sense, perhaps unintentionally, one of the funniest starists around. Sort of like Gingrich and his “let’s put 12 year olds to work scrubbing toilets”. You can’t write Gingrich (or Vecchione) as a work of fiction because they are unbelievable; you can’t write like them either, because as intentional satire their stuff is unbelievable. But as they are, they are the most hilarious and poignant acts around.

    • Traveler

      Very excellent points all, especially the last. I rarely even bother to read JJV- I just come for the comments. But did you mean “starists” or satirists? :)

      • icarusr

        Fingers working faster than the brain or the eye, I’m afraid – but in context, I see both work :p.

    • ottovbvs

      A fair summation but even if all true it doesn’t mean there isn’t a heart of darkness in there somewhere. These folks are ugly on the surface and even uglier inside.

    • indy

      Otto has it right. It’s sort of like performance art of a baby sacrifice. You can admire the technique, be amazed at their utter lack of awareness of what they are doing, but still it’s horrifying.

      • Traveler

        The worst of it is, this sort of thinking represents a substantial minority of our electorate. And the MSM goes along like it supposed to be “fair”. I have never seen such polarization between those that think and those that cannot. I swear its straight from the twilight zone.

  • vinnies

    wow. what a load of c**p. i want those 5 minutes back.

    note to self: ignore any and all john vecchione “articles”.

  • bamboozer

    Veccione fails to honer the great Norquist, that would amount to a tax increase and as such is anethma to the Tea Party and the rest of the Pledge Signers. An earlier response noted that “paying taxes should be cast as patriotic”. Heresy!!! All good conservative know taxes are a communist plot with a side of socialism. Real patriots shouldn’t pay them as it amounts to tribute to the devil.

  • cryptozoologist

    not one word about whether or not this might be good policy, just some mean spirited pot stirring. “of course we are willing to go against our pledges not to raise taxes. it makes the other side look bad.” is precisely why the gop is unfit to rule.

  • jjv

    For all the commentors, I am of the opinion that it is good policy to stop deducting state taxes. Over the long term it would put downward pressure on taxation at the state and federal level and I think that is a good thing for the economy and a free people. That it would also help the Republicans is a bonus. Its initial aide to revenue is not bad either. The premise of all of my pieces is that liberalism is bad for children and other living things. I don’t propose bad policy to hurt Democrats but good policy to hurt Democrats.

    • TerryF98

      Too funny.

      You are in effect a troll on this site, you write total lies (American ambassador piece) and this sort of rubbish.

      You call it policy I call it crap.

      BTW, I see your sock puppet jeffry1 disappeared as soon as you were called out for using a false name to defend your rubbish.

    • indy

      I’d like nothing more than to see this proposed by the Republican leadership. If you think it all the way through, maybe you can figure out why Republicans would be shooting themselves in the foot with this proposal.

    • ottovbvs

      “I don’t propose bad policy to hurt Democrats but good policy to hurt Democrats.”

      If it’s good policy why put a $500k cut off on losing the mortgage interest deduction? But go ahead let Republicans propose this and see how well it plays with their constituency!

    • Frumplestiltskin

      you do know that Blue states pay far more in taxes to the Federal government than they get back, what do you proposed to do to remedy this unfairness? Or is parasitism good when it is done by Republicans?
      Tax the RED STATES, tax fairness, tax equity NOW!

  • bzooty23

    I know! Pass a bill that would force Pelosi, Shumer and Boxer to say “Ronald Reagan was totally awesome” every time they are presented with a microphone. That will show those dirty effin hippies!!!

    See, now I’m a journalist just like this Vecchione character.

  • FosterBoondoggle

    JJV: Can you please explain this line? “It [removing state/local tax deductibility] creates incentives for people to move from high tax areas to more productive low tax areas.”

    If the other areas are so productive, how come all but one of them has an average per capita federal tax rate HIGHER than the national average? Somewhat old (2004) data from the Tax Foundation (your source):
    US Average Individual Income Tax: $2,789
    New Jersey: 4,234
    New York: 3,883
    Connecticut: 5,590
    Maryland: 3,242
    California: 3,187
    Hawaii: 2,081
    Massachusetts: 4,424

    Somehow all of these high-state-tax-rate places are sending much larger amounts of money to the Federal government as well. How does this square with their supposed low productivity?

    • Traveler

      A quick excel analysis shows the mean of those states pay 136% more than the average. Assuming normality, the receiving (red) states pay a similar amount less, or around 73%. Need sources to support this, but this suggests that the blues are paying in 186% of the reds.

      What a racket. This whole redistribution (that Balsz supposedly decries) has to be the one of all time greatest scams ever perpetrated (next to the banksters). Those of us that produce the most income end up supporting self-righteous troglodytes who are doing their best to drive us (and them) to ruin. Meanwhile the sanctimonious bastards point their fingers at us, and the MSM goes along for the ride, along with supposed independents. These are dismal times indeed.

      So go ahead trollers, show us why you are so much better without us “Dirty Libruhls” supporting your ineffective leeching. Do you a**holes have any idea how much we despise you? Wake up, fools, we might end up hating you even more than you hate us.

  • Mitch Evans

    Let’s take the same approach on spending, and strip statehood from Alaska, Mississippi, Wyoming, the Dakotas, and every other state with a net deficit in federal cash flow (i.e., fed revenues generated vs. fed money received).

    Where are your red states then?

    • Bohemian_Idol_Smasher

      The only red state that would remain in the union, following your repeal of statehood for all of those who pay negative federal income tax, is Texas. And only barely, and primarily because of its rich fossil fuel reserves.

  • adamcarralejo

    This seems like an interesting thought that works better in theory than in practice. The problem is the author has two misconceptions; one about liberals in general and another about Democrat leadership.

    First, many rich liberals (I know I live in a rich liberal California town) are more than happy to pay more taxes – even though it’s not in their best interests – that’s why their liberal. Also, if they hated taxes as much as you seem to think, then taxes in these states wouldn’t be so high to begin with. The liberal attitude here is “I think government should take an active role in society and I understand that it requires a certain level of taxation.”

    It’s the inverse of the liberal argument that Dems need to show people in poor/Republican states of the south and west that their economies depend on redistribution of tax revenue from the rich/liberal states – then they won’t hate socialism so much! How’s that working out?

    Second problem, while Democrat leadership is lukewarm on raising taxes – it’s not because they know their liberal public is unaware of the impact higher taxes will have on their bottom line. It’s because the biggest corporations, industry lobbying groups, and the financial sector all give roughly as much money to Democrats as Republicans. Dem leadership is lukewarm on raising taxes because they don’t want to alienate their donors. The difference is that whereas Democrats are torn between their anti-tax donors and their pro-tax base, Republicans have both an anti-tax base along with anti-tax donors.

  • Henson

    This assumes a couple of very big things:

    1. Liberal donors/supporters in these areas would be upset by a tax increase. Unfortunately for your argument, it seems that over the past year or so many of them have actually been asking for it.

    2. These are battleground districts, where it matters if a Democrat has to take a tough vote. Nonsense. If you really think that, for instance, Nancy Pelosi has to worry about re-election, you’re deluded.

    3. The democrats play along. I don’t see this happening. As much as I may disagree with them from time to time, I don’t see disagreement as a sign that the other party is stupid (something that seems to separate me from most Republicans.) I can just see Barney Frank trotting out and saying, “Yeah! Gweat! It’s about time the Wepublicans came to their senses on their pwotection of millionaiwes who nevew asked for their pwotection!”

    • adamcarralejo

      totally agree

      • Traveler

        Nice posts gentlemen. The extent of interstate wealth transfer is dumbfounding. Those that have more want to give more, but those that have less and get more from those that do, say they don’t want have anything to do with such largesse.

        I have never seen such widespread self delusion in my five decades reading the news. Watch out if the blue states wake up. It might well happen this time around. With the POGers playing with fire, and BO with a cool $1b to point this out, it could be very different in a year from now.

        • Houndentenor

          Exactly. The real wealth transfer in America is not from rich to poor individuals so much as from rich states (all blue except for Texas) to poor states (all red except for Vermont). That’s the reality. Maybe we should just send it back to the states and let Mississippi and Alabama fend for themselves. Why should people in New York, California and Illinois pay for benefits to people who claim not to want them at all?

    • Bohemian_Idol_Smasher

      Actually, Vecchione’s second assertion is largely correct. He’s referring to affluent suburban districts like the one currently held by Democratic Rep. Jay Inslee in North Seattle, or the one held by Democrat Carolyn McCarthy out on Long Island. These places are dominated culturally by the sort of “meritocratic” types that David Brooks famously labeled Bobos (i.e., “bourgeois bohemians”) and that John Vecchione here mocks as Gentry Liberals; and the political culture of these places, while more favorable than not to Democrats in recent years, is ideologically moderate. These are congressional districts where a moderate Republican could win in a year favorable to his or her party. (As was the case in 1994 in both of the districts mentioned above.)

  • think4yourself

    @ JVV

    Wrong on substance and intent:

    “The long term economic benefits of such a move are obvious. First, it creates incentives to keep state tax burdens low by, for instance, paying state workers market rates. It lowers the deficit and makes federal receipts less dependent on state tax decisions. It creates incentives for people to move from high tax areas to more productive low tax areas.”

    1-A “Creates incentives to keep state tax burdens low”. Please provide evidence that removing/eliminating the state income tax deduction will keep state tax burdens low. I suspect the state income tax deduction has very little to do with decisions about state tax rates.

    1-B …paying state workers market rates. I don’t see any indication that eliminating the state tax deduction would have any effect on wages for state employees – there’s a whole lot of other issues that go into state wages that are more important than that.

    2-A. “lowers the deficit” By definition any reduction in deductions will raise tax reciepts, something GOP has been opposed to.

    2-B. “makes federal receipts less dependent on state tax decisions.” How will eliminating this deduction cause changes in state tax decisions that will significantly affect Federal receipts? I don’t see a scenario where all states end income tax because of this deduction change. So no big deal here.

    3-A. “creates incentives for people to move from high tax areas” Actually, I can argue the reverse is true. If eliminating this deduction causes state income taxes to fall (as you argue), then people won’t move to low tax areas. I do know some high wage people who have moved from CA to NV to save state income tax. The Federal deduction didn’t factor into their decision at all.

    3-B. “more productive low tax areas.” You argue that low tax areas are more productive. Evidence please. Can you show me any examples of increased productivity in a low tax state versus a high tax state? Is OR or NV more productive than CA or NY?

    Finally, the gross cynicism of your article is exactly why David Frum wrote his article about the GOP yesterday. You are only interested in political gain – not solving the country’s problems. I personally don’t have a problem with a discussion of eliminating deductions including state income tax, mortgage deduction and charitable – all of which only accrue to those who file their tax returns with a Schedule A (which generally means if you don’t deduct home mortgage, you don’t qualify for the other deductible amounts).

    When GOP thought leaders decide to act like statesmen to solve the nation’s problems I suspect they will find many ready and willing partners from most independents and very many Democrats.

    You sir are no statesman.

    • ottovbvs

      Great summary t4y. I do wonder sometimes whether folks like Barone and Vecchione have that sign in their offices that says ”Engage brain before opening mouth”

      • WaStateUrbanGOPer

        I agree with you, but with a heavy heart. Michael Barone’s work used to be indispensable reading. Ten years ago he wrote a book on immigration that is as thoughtful and reliable as any other popular or academic work on the subject. Sadly, sometime around 2008, he became totally unhinged. (The same trajectory from nuance and measuredness to outright wingnuttery also seems to be the case for Thomas Sowell.)

    • Traveler

      He never said he was even close to a statesman. He is just a shill, and he knows it. I gotta hand it to him for trying to respond to comments. Not like it gets him anywhere with any of us with over a room temperature IQ. (BTW, that phrase wont work for long if global warming hits the red states as bad it looks like it will).

      But your post was dead on the money, literally. We read for the comments, not this poster, and yours was excellent. Thanks.

  • more5600

    Repulsive. This is exactly what is wrong with today politics, absolutely childish.

    David, dump this guy.

    • NRA Liberal

      Vech is “The Id of Frum Forum”. He’s here for the duration.

    • AnBr

      I think that the main reason that Frum keeps such tribal hacks as jjv around is for fear of losing his Republican credentials. The problem is that jjv is counter to the stated mission of FF. How can you reclaim the party with such illogic and intellectual dishonesty operating from false assumptions.

  • nvrbl

    You people are something else. You’ve gone from wanting huge tax cuts for the top, tax increase for the bottom 84% to now you want to increase taxes on dems. One Republican said we shouldn’t let students vote because they are too liberal. Is it any wonder people are fed up with right wing anti American, morally bankrupt, thoroughly corrupt efforts?

  • WaStateUrbanGOPer

    Vecchione makes a grievous omission in his analysis. The most outspoken backers of the state tax deduction are moderate blue state Republicans like Fred Upton and Dave Reichert. In fact Reichert’s predecessor and fellow moderate, Jennifer Dunn, was a co-sponsor of the House bill that created the exemption.

    A repeal of this law, regardless of its policy merits, might end up hurting Republicans in blue states. (Which, since Vecchione despises them as ‘RINOs,’ would probably please him very much.)