Coburn vs Norquist on Ethanol Subsidies: Point Coburn

In a recent blog post I wrote for the Monthly, I examined the on going battle between anti-tax fanatic Grover Norquist and Republican Senator Tom Coburn:

Coburn calls Norquist “the boogeyman” and repeatedly attacks him for refusing to even consider a grand bargain. The junior senator concludes the piece saying, “The majority of Democrats and Republicans understand the severity of our economic challenges. They know they have to put everything on the table and make hard choices. Legislators who would rather foster political boogeymen only delay those critical reforms.”

My article was in response to an Coburn’s op-ed denouncing Norquist’s pledge. Well, Norquist wasn’t going to just let that go. He struck back later. The Hill has the story:

Norquist told The Hill that the piece is filed with “lies” and said that Coburn is violating, and trying to get colleagues to violate, a pledge they made to voters.

He said Coburn is wrong to target him, a mere advocate, and should instead acknowledge to his constituents that he is betraying them.

Okay, so that’s relatively normal fighting between a politician and a leading lobbyist. What intrigued me more is the bill that Coburn specifically pointed out in his op-ed:

Consider the evidence: I recently proposed amendments to end tax earmarks for movie producers and the ethanol industry. Mr. Norquist charged that those measures would be tax hikes unless paired with dollar-for-dollar rate reductions. And yet all but six of the 41 Senate Republicans who had signed his pledge voted for my amendments.

And Norquist of course shot back against that too in The Hill‘s article: Continue reading “Coburn vs Norquist on Ethanol Subsidies: Point Coburn”

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