Obama’s Gas Pains

Steven Hayward
PowerLine
2/19/2012

Interesting and complementing lead stories in the Washington Post and New York Times this morning, and neither of them can be good for Obama.  The Post’s lead story warns of “Taxmageddon” next year, when the payroll tax cut will expire, along with the Bush tax cuts; the Obamacare “surcharges” will also kick in on dividends and capital gains.  In all, it will amount to about a $500 billion tax increase next year:

Overnight, the marriage penalty for joint filers will spring back to life, the value of the child credit will drop from $1,000 to $500, and the rate everyone pays on the first $8,700 of wages will jump from 10 percent to 15 percent. . .

The potential shock to the nation’s pocketbook is so enormous, congressional aides have dubbed it “Taxmageddon.” Some economists say it could push the fragile U.S. economy back into recession, particularly if automatic cuts to federal agencies, also set for January, are permitted to take effect.

So it’s easy to make a prediction from here: the payroll tax cut, like the perennial “doc fix” for Medicare reimbursement and the annual AMT adjustment, will become permanent.  Maybe other adjustments will be made in a lame duck session after the election.  Seems to me Republican candidates ought to have the wit to run with the slogan: A vote for Obama is a vote for $500 billion in higher taxes next year.

Meanwhile, the Times notes in its lead story that rising gasoline prices may present a political problem for Obama.  Now this is a curious story, for several reasons…

The article, with graphics, continues at PowerLine.

UpdateAs Gas Prices Climb to Record Highs – Saudi Arabia Cuts Oil Output and Exports

Also,One of Obama’s Biggest Opponents in 2012

Barry Antoinette faces higher gas prices

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