Mitt Romney, who consistently advocates against taxing the rich, this morning reconfirmed that he would not accept one dollar in tax increases — even if it were paired with ten dollars of spending cuts.
Today on Face The Nation, Romney reconfirmed his commitment as the presumptive nominee not to take such a deal — or, it seems, to raise taxes at all:
SCHIEFFER: You were one of the vast majority of Republicans to signed the pledge circulated by the leading antitax advocate Grover Norquist, no new taxes under any circumstances. And I remember once back during one of the primaries, you were asked if you would agree to $1 in taxes if you could get $10 cut in spending cuts, and you said at that time, no, I wouldn’t even accept that. Do you still feel that way?
ROMNEY: Well, we all felt that way. And the reason is that government, at all levels today, consumers about 37% of our economy.
SCHIEFFER: But do you still feel–
ROMNEY: Let me go on and explain. The answer is I do feel that way. Government is big and getting larger, and there are those who think the answer is just to take a little more from the American people, just give us a little more. and there are places that have gone that way– California, for instance, keeps raising taxes more and more and more. and funny thing, the more they raise in taxes, deficits get larger and larger. The only solution to taming an out-of-control spending government is to cut spending and my policies reduce the rate of spending…
To put the number in perspective, the government almost shut down over last year over a deal that would have provided $3 in spending cuts for every dollar in new revenue. Ten dollars in spending cuts to one dollar in new revenue would necessitate dramatic reductions in core government programs. Even conservative politicians like Jeb Bush have warned that extreme orthodoxy on taxes threatens to drive government revenues too low.
Romney has also faced harsh criticism over his inability to explain where he would get any revenue for the government, since he wants to drastically cut taxes on the top income earners. A lack of new revenue means deep, deep spending cuts — specifically to programs for the very poor.