November 29, 2012 |
Ayatollahs seem to just appoint themselves and then start enforcing their own brand of orthodoxy. Grover Norquist has been doing that in the Republican Party for years. Norquist has never been elected to anything. Nobody ever said he should be in charge of the GOP's true religion (although he claims President Ronald Reagan urged him to found his lobbying group, Americans for Tax Reform). But he certainly has been the Republicans' key political theologian, making opposition to tax increases the party's central tenet for more than 25 years.
November 21, 2012 |
Grover Norquist is losing his grip. It once seemed as if Washington's most powerful anti-tax crusader had the Republican Party firmly in hand. Signing Norquist's public pledge not to raise taxes was almost mandatory in GOP politics. Nine of the 10 candidates initially vying for the Republican presidential nomination, including Mitt Romney, signed on, as did candidates for local, state and national office. Some of them even signed Norquist's vow in public ceremonies, then gave him the originals to store in the vault of his group, Americans for Tax Freedom.
August 15, 2013 |
In his speech to the American Bar Assn. on Monday, Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. sounded more like a fierce critic of the federal criminal justice system than its formal leader. He described some federal mandatory minimum prison terms as "excessive" and "draconian" and said "they oftentimes generate unfairly long sentences. " He asserted that "people of color often face harsher punishments than their peers," and he more broadly lamented that "too many Americans go to too many prisons for far too long, and for no truly good law enforcement reason.
November 24, 2012
Re "Grover Norquist's tough year," Opinion, Nov. 21 One thing to add to Doyle McManus' excellent piece on Republicans in Congress finally turning away from the Grover Norquist pledge never to increase taxes: Norquist has been clear about his reason for demanding that promise. He's on record advocating lowering tax revenue to, in his words, "reduce [government] to the size where I can drag it into the bathroom and drown it in the bathtub. " In 1949, 11 members of the American Communist Party were tried in New York City, not for a specific plan to overthrow the U.S. government by force but for a "philosophy" of violently overthrowing governments.
October 31, 2012
Re "CEOs to D.C.: Get serious," Editorial, Oct. 26 I have a modest proposal to help the country avoid the fiscal cliff. Echoing Ronald Reagan's call to Mikhail Gorbachev: "Tear up the pledge, Grover Norquist, tear up the pledge. The world has changed. America is in financial trouble. Release the members of the Republican Congress who are handcuffed by their commitment to you. Free them to think for themselves and act for themselves. " Keith Johnson Studio City ALSO: Letters: Our relic zoo Letters: Shamed by Zillow Letters: Spenders by habit
May 24, 2012
Re "GOP hopefuls could sidestep tax orthodoxy," May 19 Hooray for the candidates who are willing to stand up to Grover Norquist by refusing to sign his anti-tax pledge. We need more brave souls in the GOP who want to compromise rather than obstruct. As for those Republicans who have already signed the pledge to never vote for tax increases, I challenge you to do your part: refuse to take a government salary, benefits or use expense accounts. Doing so won't cost voters anything if you support a tax increase because you can say you eliminated an expense.
November 3, 2011 |
He's been called a powerbroker, a bogeyman and a puppet master, but it's not often anti-tax activist Grover Norquist is characterized as just an ordinary guy. House Speaker John Boehner did just that at his weekly news conference this morning. Asked whether he thought Norquist, who keeps nearly all Republicans to a pledge never to raise taxes, was a good influence on the party, Boehner didn't acknowledge that Norquist had any influence. "It's not often I'm asked about some random person in America and what I think," Boehner told reporters.
April 24, 2014
Re "The right takes aim at the solar industry," April 20 The vast sums of money used by the Koch brothers and their ilk originated from average Americans fueling their vehicles and powering their homes. Billions of dollars are sucked out of our economy by those who want us to keep using carbon-based energy. The use of oil, coal and natural gas has massive external costs that are not paid by the end user. This is the reason government regulators are trying to level the playing field by providing reasonable incentives for solar energy.
August 12, 2012
Re "Tax-free Olympic glory?," Editorial, Aug. 9 What's so wrong with allowing Olympic-medal-winning athletes to receive their nominal honorariums tax-free from the U.S. Olympic Committee? Your comparison of the athletes with public service employees such as firefighters is an apples-and-oranges one. Being an Olympian is an opportunity to represent your country; the other is a professional career. You write that any decent accountant could reduce an athlete's tax liability to practically nothing - so why not just give the athletes a break from our complicated tax code?