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The Latest on the Cliff and Plan B

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: It's Dave in Detroit. Great to have you on the program, sir. Hello.

CALLER: Hello, Rush. Thanks for having me.

RUSH: You bet, sir. Thanks for calling.

CALLER: My question for you was in regards to a fiscal cliff. You know, Boehner and the Republicans keep giving 'em taxes but we don't hear anything from the Democrats, and they don't give at all. I'm curious why that is.

RUSH: Are you asking me why that is?

CALLER: Yes.

RUSH: Well, um... (big sigh) Well, uh, the Democrats won the election.

CALLER: Mmm-hmm.

RUSH: I mean, that's basically the answer to the question: Democrats won the election.

CALLER: And Republicans don't have any leverage?

RUSH: Obama doesn't want to cut spending. He wants to grow spending. He wants to spend more. The Republicans don't think they have a way to get Obama to agree to cut spending, and so Boehner has come up with Plan B. Here's Plan B. Plan B is... See, everybody's taxes are scheduled to go up on January 1st. Everybody's. Everybody's income taxes are gonna go up on January 1st. Boehner's Plan B is a proposal that says only people who earn a million dollars or more will see a tax increase; nobody else will.

CALLER: Mmm-hmm.

RUSH: Because Boehner believes that Obama doesn't want to go over the cliff, and the Republicans don't want to go over the cliff. Because if we go over the cliff, everybody's taxes go up and then Obama will come along and propose tax cuts like January 2nd and get credit for tax cuts that he allowed to go up in the first place. The Republicans are trying to corner Obama into accepting a tax increase on the rich, which is what Obama says he wants, but exempting everybody else. No tax increase.

There are no spending cuts in the deal 'cause Obama has said that he's not... Well, this gets confusing, 'cause Obama's claiming there's almost $1.2 trillion in cuts in years nine and ten. (laughing) There won't be a year nine or ten. But, basically, Republicans don't think they have any leverage. They don't think they have any way to pressure Obama into compromising with them, and so what they're trying to do is prevent everybody's taxes going up so that they don't get blamed for it.

That's really the impetus.

But there's more to this.

A lot of conservatives are pushing Plan B, and I want to tell you how they're doing it when we come back.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Here's the latest on the fiscal cliff and Plan B. Boehner met with the media about 40 minutes ago or so, maybe a little bit longer than that. And he said that Obama and the Senate Democrats haven't done much of anything, that their Plan B is to slow-walk us over the fiscal cliff. Jay Leno had it best: "Boehner has Plan B. Obama's using Plan F and Plan U," and that's what we're dealing with here.

Now, a couple hours before Boehner spoke today, Mitch McConnell, who's the Republican leader in the Senate, said that Obama really wants the fiscal cliff. He wants to go over the cliff. He wants everybody's taxes to go up to pay for his big government. He wants to soak everybody. McConnell said it should be perfectly obvious now. And it is, and I hate to say, "See, I Told You So," but I think it's been the easiest thing in the world to conclude that Obama wants to go over the fiscal cliff.

Now, those of you who listen to the program regularly have heard the reasons why I think that. Very briefly, I'll just repeat it. Obama is seeking to be a transformational president. Not just transform the country; he wants to be seen as a transformational president. One of the things... This is pure politics. It has nothing to do with governing. It has nothing to do with your life or making it better or worse. It has nothing to do with the country.

This is pure, pure politics.

What Obama is doing is attempting to secure from the Republicans a concession that tax cuts have caused all these problems that we face. The Reagan tax cuts, the Bush tax cuts -- which, by the way, were only for "the rich," if you listen to Obama, which is not true. Reagan and Bush cut taxes for everybody that pays taxes. But Obama and the Democrats continue to call them "tax cuts for the rich." But what Obama's after is for the Republicans, by virtue of agreeing with him on policy...

They don't expect Boehner to stand up and say, "I confess my policies have led to the problem." They want Boehner's actions to signify that. What Obama is after is for Boehner to agree to raise taxes, even just on the rich. That will do. If Boehner agrees to raise taxes on the rich, then the Republicans are conceding that that's the problem and that deficit reduction and debt reduction can be addressed by raising taxes on the rich.

Obama and the Democrats are desperate to get that concession from the Republicans. They're desperate for it, in a pure political sense. There are many people on the right who do not see that. Many people on the right, on their blogs, are disagreeing with me vehemently, although not by name. They're not using my name, but they're saying things like, "This is the most ridiculous thing I ever heard, that what Obama wants is to destroy the Republican brand of being for low taxes."

Ha! I don't know what's so hard to see about it. Obama is about destroying his political opposition. Any good politician is about that! The Republicans are not about that. The Republicans are into this mode that we gotta get along with them, because that's what they think low-information or independent voters want is everybody getting along. The evidence that the independents don't care about that and nobody else cares about that, is that Obama and the Democrats have a search-and-destroy mission on every Republican opponent.

And they never pay a price for it. They win! So the Republicans are living in a dream world if they think a majority of Americans want us all to work together in a bipartisan way. So while the Republicans are out trying to make that happen, they're being erased. And Obama's got the eraser. And that's his objective. And if he can get the Republicans to agree with his premise that the rich aren't paying their fair share, then the Republicans are giving up a lot of what they're known for.

That's what he's after here.

"But, Rush! But, Rush! Going over the cliff would raise taxes for everybody."

Yeah. And I guarantee you, I don't care what you make, your taxes are going up if this guy's president. I don't care what he says now. I don't care what he said four years ago. Everybody's taxes are going up. They're gonna have to go up to pay for what this guy intends. There isn't gonna be a single person who escapes tax increases in this country. I don't care who you are, I don't care where you live, I don't care how much money you make.

But this deal, the politics of this deal. We go over the cliff, and January 1st everybody's taxes go up. Including the middle class. Now, McConnell is right. Obama wants everybody's taxes to go up, but here's what else Obama wants. He wants, after those taxes go up, to be the guy who proposes tax cuts after blaming the Republicans for everybody's taxes increasing because they wouldn't go along with him.

"They wouldn't agree. They wouldn't raise taxes. They wouldn't agree to raise taxes on the rich, so everybody's taxes went up. Republicans were protecting the rich. Everybody's taxes went up!" That's what's gonna be said. Then Obama gets to be the hero. He gets to come in and, very soon, propose tax cuts. Then he owns the tax cut issue, or if he doesn't own it he's certainly gonna benefit from it.

He's gonna get the credit for it from people, and the low-information voter isn't gonna know the difference. Now, how's Boehner trying to counter that? Okay, Boehner's Plan B is to agree to a tax increase on everybody making over a million dollars a year. Now, this is a tax cut on a lot of rich people. But Obama's number is $400,000 now. He moved up from $250,000 to $400,000. That means people who make between $400,000 and $999,999 would not see a tax increase under Boehner's Plan B.

There's a lot of money in there that Obama wants. Yesterday in his press availability, he made it sound like somebody making $999,999 is Warren Buffett. And they're not paying their fair share, either. He doesn't think they ought to be getting away with it without paying their own tax increase. Now, to many people, Boehner's Plan B is a cave. To some people on our side, it's a cave, because it's exactly what Obama wants.

It's Boehner, the Republicans agreeing to raise taxes on the rich under the premise that the problems exist because the rich got their tax cut in the first place and therefore haven't been paying their fair share. Obama does... I guarantee these low-information people, they do believe that we have a deficit and a national debt and an economy in a mess because the rich aren't paying their fair share. Now, you may think nobody's that dumb. I'm telling you, they believe it.

That's what all this means!

That's what Obama's after, an agreement that his claim is true, that tax cuts for the rich caused all this, not his spending.  Not the Democrats' spending.  Not any spending.  Spending is not the problem here.  Too many rich people aren't paying their fair share.  So Boehner, "Okay, you want a tax increase on the rich, here you go, but only on people making a million dollars a year or more."  Now, there are some conservatives in the conservative media who are supporting this.  And let me tell you how they're doing it.  It's right out of the baseline budgeting manual of persuasion.  The law of the land right now is that everybody's taxes go up on January 1st. 

Everybody who pays income taxes will see a significant increase in their income tax rate, their percentage, on January 1.  It has been calculated that over ten years, these rate increases will produce, in a static economy, $4.1 trillion.  So it is being said that on the books, the law of the land, fiscal cliff, law of the land, January 1, taxes go up $4.1 trillion.  Boehner comes along, proposes that everybody under a million dollars gets no tax increase.  The conservative media that I have seen selling this is saying, "How can any conservative oppose a $4.1 trillion tax cut?"  Goes like this.  Law of the land, January 1, everybody's taxes go up to the tune of a total of $4 trillion over ten years.  If Obama signs Plan B, agrees to Boehner, then taxes won't go up $4 trillion.  Everybody's tax rate will stay the same.  That is being called a tax cut. 

Your tax rate staying the same is being called a tax cut in order to sell Plan B.  And it's persuasive to some because the law of the land is that on January 1 you're gonna get a tax increase.  But if Plan B is signed, you won't.  Therefore, since your taxes aren't going up, then they're gonna be cut.  But nobody's taxes are being cut.  Nobody paying what rate they're paying today is going to see their rate go down.  Nobody is going to see their rate get smaller.  But it is true that everybody's rates could go up or would go up on January 1 if there is no agreement.  So now what's happened is that, in order to sell Plan B among the conservative intelligentsia, it's being touted as Plan B equals a $4 trillion tax cut.  The end result is that your taxes won't change, as opposed to go up. 

And it is a tax increase if your taxes go up on January 1, and if they don't go up, then, yeah, you might say your taxes are not going up.  It's playing with the language to say you're getting a tax cut, because in order for you to get a tax cut the taxes would have to go up and then somebody would have to come in and lower the rates again, which is what Obama wants to do.  Obama wants to offer a tax cut for a certain number of people that live in the middle class after everybody's taxes go up.  He can be the guy riding in on the white horse to save the day from the evil Republicans who saw to it that everybody's taxes went up while they tried to protect the rich.  That's the line Obama can't wait to use.  In fact, he's already using it now. 

So that's where this thing stands.  So the pressure is on conservatives in the House and Republicans in the House to support Boehner's Plan B on the premise that Boehner's Plan B is a $4 trillion tax cut.  Now, at some point next year everybody's taxes are going up no matter what happens here on Plan B or the fiscal cliff, and then at some point this argument really isn't even about taxes anymore.  It's about liberty and freedom and the kind of country we're going to have and us serving government rather than government serving us.  All of this is serving to establish that everything we do is for government and that everything we own and produce is government's, our income, our property. And whatever we end up with is because of their good graces and their benevolence, allowing us to keep X of what we produce, rather than us agreeing they only get to take X-amount of what we produce.  That's a major transformation, a major thing that's underway.  It's happening regardless of what happens with the fiscal cliff and with Plan B. 

Now, let me ask you, Mr. Snerdley, I've just spent a good 14 minutes explaining it.  Do you think any low-information voter who might have been listening has learned anything?  They left after the reference to baseline budgeting and tax rates and fiscal cliff and... right.  Yeah.  Now, if I had related it to Snooki and her baby's income, then maybe I could have attracted their interest.  Or one of the Real Housewives of wherever.  But regardless, I just want to tell you, we've gotten to the point now where even Republicans are touting tax rates staying the same as a tax cut.  And arguably everybody's taxes would go up on January 1, with the cliff.

By the way, one more thing.  Boehner's Plan B is exactly what Pelosi and Schumer suggested in the last six months and two years respectively, and both Schumer and Pelosi are walking it back (imitating Schumer and Pelosi), "Oh, no, no, no.  Those proposals were made under entirely different economic circumstances.  I don't support what I proposed six months ago."  Pelosi said, "I was just making a political maneuver.  I didn't really mean it."  So all the Democrats who support Boehner's Plan B are running away from it because they all want to go over the cliff, folks.  They all want your taxes to go up.  They want your money and they want to spend it as their own.  They don't want you keeping it.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: Folks, here's something else along the lines of the fiscal cliff and the tax deal.  A story from CNNMoney.com, the headline:  "Lack of AMT Fix Could Delay 100 Million Tax Returns."  We get a story like this every year.  Every time there is a budget dispute, we get a story.  It says here: "As many as 100 million taxpayers may be unable to file their returns until late March --"  Means you won't get your refund. "-- and would face refund delays if Congress fails to reach a fiscal cliff deal by Dec. 31."

See, here's more pressure being brought to bear on you.  "AMT fix? I'm not gonna get my refund?  To hell with that."  And you're supposed to call Boehner and the Republicans and tell them to cave so that you get your refund.  Every time there's a budget story, every damn time, we get a story like this from the Drive-By Media.  It mentions here in passing:  "Without a patch, $45,000 for joint filers and $33,750 for single taxpayers is exempt from the AMT."  They go on to tell you all these numbers and so forth.  Your world is gonna end, basically, if the Republicans don't cave.  You're not gonna get a refund. You won't be able to file.  You may get late penalties, because of the Republicans.  That's what the story is. 

END TRANSCRIPT

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