GOP Mythmaking: The Obama Sales Tax on Electricity

Mar 28 2009 Published by under Featured News

Today, Sen. Judd Gregg accused Obama of proposing the largest tax increase in history by imposing a sales tax on electricity during his delivery of the weekly Republican radio address. The sales tax Gregg is referring to is actually Obama’s proposed cap and trade system to combat global warming.

Gregg said, “He also is proposing the largest tax increase in history, much of it aimed at taxing small business people who have been, over the years, the best job creators in our economy. And further, he is proposing a massive new national sales tax on your electric bill. So that every time you turn on a light switch in your house, you will be hit with a new tax — and it averages over $3,000 per household. These are staggering numbers and represent an extraordinary move of our government to the left.”

Here is what Rep. Susan Molinari said during her keynote speech at the 1996 Republican National Convention, “Bill Clinton passed the largest tax increase in history, and now Americans pay almost 40 cents of every dollar they earn in taxes — the most ever. Every year Bill Clinton has been in office, taxes have been higher and family incomes have been lower.” (Actually family incomes rose under Clinton, and subsequently plummeted under the George W. Bush tax cuts).

What Sen. Gregg failed to mention today is that Obama also passed the largest tax cut in history when he signed the Economic Recovery Act. So how is Obama’s budget the largest tax increase in history? Using GOP logic any Bush tax cut that isn’t retained is the equivalent of tax increase. This was a method first used by the Bush administration that has continued to find favor within the GOP. Congressional Republicans want people to forget about the last eight years when they along with Bush ran the economy into the ground.

As the Tax Foundation pointed out last fall, Obama is not proposing a “sales tax on electricity” as Gregg stated today. What Gregg was referring to was Obama’s cap and trade plan, but since only the most radical Republicans will come out against combating global warming, the GOP has decided to create the lie about the cap and trade system being a sales tax on electricity. Just to be clear, no one has proposed a sales tax on electricity. The plan does not tax energy, but tries to cut pollution. Gregg’s address is yet another example of the GOP’s belief that the American people are stupid, and will believe anything.

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