Last week the US House of Representatives voted to extend the Bush Era tax cuts to poor and middle class but not to richest 2% of Americans. On Saturday, predictably, all Senate Republicans (including our own John McCain and Jon Kyl) + 5 Blue Dog Democrats killed the limited tax cut extension and continued to hold out for full extension of the tax cuts to everyone.
A recent CBS News poll shows that Republican grandstanding for the rich is out of step with most Americans. According to CBS, 53% of Americans favor extension of the cuts to income under $250,000, and only 26% favor extending the cuts to all Americans, including the wealthiest. You’ll note that only 10% of those “free-spending” Democrats want to extend the cuts to everyone, while 46% of those “fiscally responsible” Republicans want full extension.
Why are Congressional conservatives fiercely fighting for full extension of the Bush Era tax cuts? Their fight has even put national security at risk, according to Newsweek, because they have vowed to not vote on anything– not even the New START Treaty– until the tax cuts have been extended to all. Obviously, the vast majority of the constituents in Kentucky (Mitch McConnell’s state) or rural Southern Ohio (John Boehner’s district) or Arizona (John and Jon’s territory) will not benefit from extension of cuts to the richest 1% of Americans. So, why have these four men been been hawking millionaire welfare for months?
Besides the obvious link between the Republican Party and rich, conservative donors– let’s look at the Republicans’ cozy relationship with FOX News.
- Since its inception, FOX news has been a faithful 24/7 mouthpiece for the right.
- Before the midterm election, FOX News’ parent company even donated money to Republican candidates.
- Failed right-wing politicians– like Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich, and Karl Rove– often land high-paying pundit jobs with FOX after their political careers dwindle.
- FOX News regularly promotes Republican ideas and candidates while hammering all things progressive.
Now thanks to Newsweek, Ed Schultz, and Rep. Alan Grayson, we learn of another reason why FOX News has been pushing for full extension of the tax cuts: their millionaire pundits stand to lose millions if tax cuts for wealthiest Americans are not extended. According to Grayson’s speech and his comments on the Ed Schultz Show (below), here is how much more in taxes popular right-wing pundits would have to pay if Congress does not extend tax cuts to all Americans:
- Rush Limbaugh – $2,689,135
- Glenn Beck – $1,512,352
- Sean Hannity – $1,006,352
- Bill O’Reilly – $914,352
- Sarah Palin – $638,352
- Newt Gingrich – $247,352
So, FOX News donates to Republican candidates and peddles their ideas, and Republican Senators and Congressmen return the favor. After all, it’s all “fair and balanced” in the “no-spin zone.”
P. S. Glenn Beck makes $33 million a year on FOX? And he has the nerve to say government workers are overpaid?