John Ransom

Hope those peas taste good.

After trying with all his might to raise taxes and demonize the “rich,” Obama finally has to accept a debt and budget deal that severely hampers his ability to get reelected because he couldn’t raise taxes on CEOs and corporate jets.

I love the taste of those peas in the morning.

As I wrote on July 2nd, in any budget and debt negotiation Obama was going to come out a loser if he didn’t raise taxes. Well, check and checkmate.  

The reason?

Because the GOP already enjoys the high ground in the debate. And they will continue to enjoy it because voters know that federal spending and debt are out of control. Forget that the GOP took it on the chin with the public playing the heavy in the debate. The GOP “brand” isn’t running for reelection. Members are and so is the president.

Forget also that the budget deal doesn’t come close to really cutting spending or debt by the order of magnitude that the country needs. We have an election coming up that will solve that problem one way or another.

Right now here are the numbers that really matter:

A “national telephone survey finds that 62% of Likely U.S. Voters are worried more that Congress and President Obama will raise taxes too much rather than too little in any deal to end the debt ceiling debate,” reports Rasmussen. The survey also found a strong majority were worried that the deal wouldn’t cut enough in spending.

Voters know now that Republicans: 1) stopped tax increases and 2) wanted bigger spending cuts.

On the two major issues that voters care about, the GOP was on the right side of the debate: Check. And checkmate.  

Despite what voters say about favoring a debt and budget approach that raised taxes and cut spending, few politicians have successfully run for reelection on a platform of raising taxes.

It’s doubtful that even Obama could pull off a “Vote for me, I raised taxes” campaign.

Members in swing states and swing districts were never going to try it.

The best Obama could have hoped for was dividing the GOP significantly.

With the debt deal agreed to by the White House, the Senate and the House leadership on Sunday evening, you find a GOP differing only by shades of gray. Significant shades most certainly, but nothing that will bother us Hobbits too much.


John Ransom

John Ransom is the Finance Editor for Townhall Finance.