RUSH: Rick Perry announced his tax plan today, which I'll go on record as saying I, El Rushbo, think is great. It's fabulous. I like it. And the left is coming unhinged. We have just two examples. First from Debbie "Blabbermouth" Schultz, who was on MSNBC today, interviewed by the anchor Thomas Roberts, who said, "What is your reaction when you hear how Rick Perry is talking about President Obama and the fact that he says he's only given big government schemes that have failed the American people?"
SCHULTZ: My reaction to Rick Perry's new-old plan is that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. This is not a new idea. This is not something that is proposed for the first time. A flat tax has been introduced in the past, and it's been rejected because it overwhelmingly blows a hole in the deficit. Rick Perry isn't proposing anything to address that. How would he pay for this?
RUSH: Well, I just love this, because she's talking about blowing a hole in the deficit. Been there, done that, Ms. Schultz. You guys wrote the book on it. When it comes to paying for it, what in the world are you paying for? We are bankrupt because of your party, Ms. Schultz. What we are proposing here is solutions that will lead to economic growth, which will lead to more precious government revenues. In fact, the president of the Club for Growth, Chris Chocola, called Rick Perry's new plan "massively pro-growth" in a statement today.
"Rick Perry’s plan for tax reform would be massively pro-growth. A Flat Tax like the one proposed by Perry would unleash years of economic growth if it is passed into law. Furthermore, eliminating the tax on dividends and capital gains would immediately add trillions of dollars in new wealth to the economy, benefiting all Americans. Perry clearly understands that revitalizing the economy should start with a complete overhaul of a tax code that has nearly choked economic growth to death. Conservatives looking for a champion to carry the banner of a pro-growth tax reform will surely rally behind this bold proposal."
Now, the president of the Club for Growth, Chris Chocola, also took a jab at Romney in his statement. He said, "Disappointed that Governor Romney has yet to embrace a flat or fair tax. He would be wise to avoid using class warfare when comparing his current proposals to those of Governor Perry or Herman Cain," talking about Romney. Here's David "Rodham" Gergen this morning on CNN's Newsroom. The host here is Joe Johns. He said, "David, politically, when you listen to this, is this or the sort of a Hail Mary pass for the Perry campaign? He’s dropped in the polls and now he has to get back in the game, does he not?"
GERGEN: He comes along with a sweeping, bold, I would say a radical plan. Some would even call it breathtaking. We ought to talk about the content of this plan because it is one of the most dramatic proposals we’ve heard in a major presidential campaign in some years. It could revitalize his campaign. Clearly that’s what he intends. This Perry plan is likely to be very well received among Tea Party types and on the right of the Republican party. It’s going to catch hell from the left because when you look at it, it can easily be painted, because it’s a windfall for the wealthy. This is going to drop the net revenue for the government. How is Perry going to deal that? He's going to hold spending down to 18% of GDP. We haven’t been anywhere close to 18% now for some years. What does that mean? A lot of government services are going to go away
RUSH: This is why a lot of people are going to like it. It is a return to fiscal sanity. We don't have the money we're spending now. We're broke. Look at our annual deficit. Look at the national debt. If something isn't done about this in a major way, not just tinkering around the edges, you know, taking the top rate from 35 to 38%, that's not gonna make any difference. Raising the retirement age to 67, whatever, that's not gonna make any appreciable difference. There has to be genuine structural, systematic change here if we're serious about this. And this is my point. We have a bunch of candidates who are dead serious about this with their proposals. And measured against the status quo, of course they're radical. But what's truly radical is destroying the country. What's truly radical is destroying the private sector, which is what is being done now. That's what's radical.
Perry, Cain, Bachmann, Newt, you name it, their proposals are not radical. They're salvational. They're only radical if you compare it to the status quo. Would it be radical to say let's go back to spending levels of the Clinton years? Everybody was happy then, boom times, everybody says the Clinton years, whoa, let's depict that, raise taxes, economic growth, we had surplus. Fine, let's go back to those spending levels. We did fine, right? How about the spending levels of 2006, everybody was fine then. Oh, no, no, no, can't do that, can't possibly do that. Look at the numbers we had yesterday of growth in the government sector, the wealthiest county in America is suburban Washington. Most everybody that lives there earns twice what people in the private sector earn. Unemployment in that area is single digits, three to four percent. They all work for the government. Who pays 'em? People that don't have jobs anymore. People that can't find jobs. People whose homes are underwater.
You want to talk about what's radical, Obamaism is radical. What's radical is what Obama has done and his party, and continues to do. That is what's radical. What we're talking about here is a return to sanity. Herman Cain's plan does it. Perry's plan at least gets us talking about it. And the shock and the, "Oh, no, we can't do that," reaction that we're getting from inside-the-Beltway elitists ought to tell you everything you need to know about it. The establishment from both parties wants no part of any of these serious reforms. Government spending was at 18% during the Reagan revolution. It's been a long time. But we got by. We had massive economic growth in the private sector. We had employment going up, going up. We had inflation going down. People thought it wasn't possible for those two things to happen at the same time. But they did.
So what's everybody all in a tizzy about? Well, Perry was on CNBC this morning Squawk Box, and John Harwood was interviewing him, and Harwood said, "By cutting the top rate to 20%," it's a flat rate, you can opt out, you've got two possibilities with the Perry plan. You can either choose a tax rate of 20% or the rate that you were paying previously. So if your tax rate was 15%, you can choose that. If your tax rate was 35%, you can choose that. Or you can choose the 20. What do you think people will do? And this is where they're bugged. That's why David "Rodham" Gergen and all these other people say it's nothing more than a big bone to the rich. So the question: "By cutting the top rate to 20%, eliminating dividends, capital gains, interest income taxes use provide a huge tax cut for wealthy people in this country. Given what's happened with income inequality, why is that a good idea?"
PERRY: We're trying to get this country working again, and that's what I focus on. As a matter of fact, as we looked and as we talked and as we went through what are the ways to really give incentives to those that are going to risk their capital to create the jobs, I mean this country's got 14-plus million people out of work, and I want to get that money back out into the economy where people have confidence that they can have a return on their investment, and they'll hire individuals. And that's what this is really all about. Those that want to get into the class warfare and talk about, oh, my goodness there are gonna be some folks here who make more money out of this, or have access to more money, I'll let them do that.
RUSH: Harwood won't let go, though, he said, "Wait a minute, for those people at the top it's hundreds of thousands, maybe even millions of dollars for them."
PERRY: But I don't care about that. What I care about is them having the dollars to invest in their companies, to go out and maybe start a business, because they've got the confidence again that they actually get to keep more of what they work for. This idea that we've gotta have a tax system in this country where you take more away from those that have the ability to create jobs. I'm all about job creation. That's what I've done for ten years as the governor of Texas, and that's what I'm focused on. So I'll take that criticism because what I'm interested in is getting Americans working.
RUSH: I kinda like that answer, folks. I don't care about that, Mr. Harwood. I don't care about your template. I don't care about your BS that my plan's gonna result in the rich having more money because, I'll tell you what, what I care about is those people having money to grow their businesses and start their businesses and hire people. What I care about's jobs, Mr. Harwood, I don't care about the government getting bigger. I don't care about that. That's not what this is about. I'm not trying to throw a bone to the rich. I'm trying to get money returned to the private sector from the public sector. I'm trying to get money back out of Washington, back to Main Street.
And that's what Herman Cain's plan is all about. Any of our people that have an economic plan, I'll guaran-damn-tee you, that's what their plan's about. Their plan is about refueling the private sector, restocking it with capital, if you will, because, you know, Biden's running around talking about rape. Let me tell you who's been raped. The private sector of this country has been raped by the Obama administration. They have been held up. We have been held up. Our capital is in Washington and it continues to go to Washington, where it is redistributed to people who are going to send it back to Democrats in the form of campaign contributions. Money laundering is the essence of union support of Democrat candidates in the Democrat Party.
So Harwood says, "Well, you mentioned 'class warfare.' In 1996, when your advisor Steve Forbes was running on a flat tax, Mitt Romney says it was a tax for the fat cats."
PERRY: I would say that he ought to go look in the mirror, I guess. (chuckles) I consider him to be a fat cat.
RUSH: "He ought to go look in the mirror. I consider [Romney] to be a fat cat." So then Harwood and Governor Perry have this exchange. They're talking about Trump and his questions about Obama's birth certificate.
PERRY: It's a good issue to keep alive. You know, Donald's gotta have some fun.
HARWOOD: But are you saying that your comments about that are kind of a joke, or do you seriously have an unresolved question --
PERRY: I don't.
HARWOOD: -- that Donald Trump has about this?
PERRY: I don't have a clue about where the president... uhh.. and -- and what this, uh, uh, birth certificate says. But it's also a great distraction.
RUSH: I don't have a clue. I frankly don't care. As long as Donald Trump's having fun, that's all I need. I'm trying to get people back the work. I don't know where Obama was born -- and at this stage, I don't care what his birth certificate says. I want to get people back to work! Here is Perry himself, Gray Court, South Carolina, portion of his remarks.
PERRY: The size of the current code is more than 72,000 pages. (chuckles) That's represented by this pallet right over here and the reams of paper. That's what the current tax code looks like. The best representation of my plan is this postcard. This is the size of what we're talking about right here. Taxpayers will be able to fill this out and file their taxes on that. (applause)
RUSH: Right. And one final bite.
PERRY: It's the kind of economic stimulus that President Obama could have achieved if he wasn't so hell-bent on passin' big-government schemes that have failed American workers.
RUSH: Okay. All right. So that's Rick Perry and his plan: Basically a flat tax of 20% with an opt out: If you don't like it, pay the tax you're paying now, and with a focus here on, "You know, Mr. Harwood, I don't care. You tell me the rich are gonna end up with more money. I don't care about that; that's not the point here. The point is I want money back in the private sector. That's where people get hired. That's where people's lives expand. That's where people's prosperity exists. We've gotta get the money, capital, back from Washington into the private sector -- and that's what I care about."