Congressional Republicans are floating the “compromise” of extending all tax cuts for two years. It sounds like a compromise all right, and of course, The Washington Post’s Lori Montgomery, who betrays her Republican bias in almost every story she writes, takes pains to call other Republicans “equally willing to compromise,” to frame the debate between compromising Republicans and the Obama position. Of course, his position was already a compromise—a willingness to extend some tax cuts but not all.
But it’s a trap for Democrats. It would put tax cuts squarely in the middle of the 2012 election, and Republicans are sure to call for their extension. They would love to have tax cuts as a central issue because no one ever loses by appealing to the most selfish and ignorant of the American electorate.
With a closely divided Congress a near certainty for the next two years, and the economy likely to improve some, voters are likely to give credit to the fact that more Republicans are in Congress, even if they accomplish nothing. And if we have a double dip recession, the GOP will not get the blame; Obama will. Having the tax cut debate during the 2012 presidential campaign is a sure loser.