Senator Dan Coats (R-IN) blasted President Obama’s budget proposal today in a Senate floor speech for including new revenue. His argument: the same one he used two decades ago in opposing President Clinton’s hugely successful deficit reduction proposal.
Coats falsely suggested that balanced approaches to budgeting that include new revenue never lead to growth or job creation, asking his colleagues:
Has anyone ever seen an increase in the economy through an increase in taxes? Would taking [more] money in of people’s paychecks, does this result in more consumer spending which helps our economy? Adding a new tax burden to the American economy — when has that ever created a job?
Twenty years ago, Coats opposed the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993, the Clinton Deficit Reduction Act, because it too included additional revenue from the richest Americans. His prognostication at that time was that it would “cost Hoosier jobs,” arguing that because of the tax provisions, “we are not going to see an increase in jobs; we are going to see a decrease.”
After the passage of 1993 bill, which Coats and every congressional Republican voted against, the economy blossomed and job creation skyrocketed. In all, more than 20 million jobs were created during the Clinton administration. The economy grew faster under the Clinton-era tax rates, in fact, that it did under the lower Bush rates, and higher tax rates have corresponded with more growth over the last 60 years.