By Bill Gordon
They say that sometimes you’re the dog, and sometimes you’re the hydrant, and well, Grover Norquist has just been having one of those weeks. Unfortunately for Mr. Norquist, his signal achievement in the past 20 years (getting conservative lawmakers to sign a pledge never to raise taxes under any circumstances) is starting to show it’s age. A growing number of conservative Senators and Representatives have started to backpedal on their pledge, and are showing signs of accepting the need for new revenue. Grover Norquist seems to think that these are just the impure thoughts of a few wayward Republicans, but we think it’s part of a broader trend: conservatives are finally waking up to the reality that Americans want the richest 2% to pay their fair share.
So we’re going to keep a running list of who has publicly broken with Norquist in recent days, and we’ll keep you updated when new members finally abandon Grover Norquist’s failed pledge.
Conservative’s Who Have Equivocated On The Pledge:
Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC): “When you’re $16 trillion in debt, the only pledge we should be making to each other is to avoid becoming Greece, and Republicans — Republicans should put revenue on the table. We’re this far in debt. We don’t generate enough revenue.” [ABC’s This Week, 11/25/12]
Rep. Peter King (R-NY): “A pledge you signed 20 years ago, 18 years ago, is for that Congress. For instance, if I were in Congress in 1941, I would have signed a declaration of war against Japan. I’m not going to attack Japan today. The world has changed. And the economic situation is different. Ronald Reagan and Tip O’Neill realized that in the 1980s. I think everything should be on the table.” [NBC’s Meet the Press, 11/25/12]
Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA): “I care more about my country than I do about a 20-year-old pledge. If we do it his way then we’ll continue in debt, and I just have a disagreement with him about that.” [WMAZ News, 11/22/12]
Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN): “I’m not obligated on the pledge. I was just elected; the only thing I’m honoring is the oath that I take when I serve, when I’m sworn in in January.” [The Hill, 11/26/12]