Steven Waldman, a former U.S. News editor (well before I wandered these halls), makes an interesting case that the coming tax cut will indeed be the biggest ever.It's common knowledge that Republicans love tax cuts, so what motivated them to vote against these? I think Steve Benen nails it with this remark:The compromise stimulus plan includes $282 billion in tax cuts over two years.Yes, over the full 10 years of its existence. But over the first two years, as Waldman points out above, the price tag was much smaller. So the Obama stimulus tax cut would be the biggest ever for the first two years.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Bush's first two years of tax cuts amounted to $174 billion. A second batch in 2004 and 2005 cost $231. And those were thought to be bigger than the tax cuts offered by Reagan, Kennedy, or others.
But wait, you say, wasn't Bush's 2001 tax cut, at $1.35 trillion (funny how the GOP didn't mind draining one trillion dollars from the government coffers then), the largest in history?
George W. Bush's tax cuts were long-term income-tax rate cuts, which amounted to a generous break for those at the top, since the wealthy pay most income taxes. Obama's tax cuts, meanwhile, are short-term refunds paid directly to working and middle class families (some of which Republicans have denounced as "welfare").We can't have money trickling down to the masses. That would ruin their plans to redistribute even more money up to the already wealthy.
By the way, with this stimulus bill, Obama kept his campaign promise to deliver tax cuts, and he's only been in office one month. Meanwhile, we're still waiting for Republicans to deliver on some of that compassionate conservatism they said we'd be seeing.