JONATHAN CHAIT JULY 13, 2011
Jason Horowitz reports about how Grover Norquist safeguards his no taxes pledge:
The sacred texts from which Grover Norquist draws his political power are hidden in a secret fireproof safe.
“I keep the originals in a vault, in case D.C. burns down,” said Norquist, referring to the pledge that his organization asks politicians to sign, vowing to “oppose any and all efforts” to raise taxes. “When someone takes the pledge, you don’t want it tampered with; you don’t want it destroyed.”...
He said it is an immutable covenant with voters, regardless of the mundane demands of governance, one so serious it must be co-signed by two witnesses.
Question: What if a Republican signed the pledge, but then Washington was engulfed in a nuclear holocaust that incinerated the safe and killed the two witnesses? Would it then be okay for him to support a tax increase? Or is there a third safety mechanism to enforce the pledge?
I'm thinking Norquist might need another failsafe mechanism, like a DNA-encrypted pledge that would be stored in Antarctica, to guard against my nuclear holocaust scenario. Because otherwise, in my scenario, there might be a lot of pressure to approve a tax hike -- you know, to fund the rebuilding of destroyed American cities and maybe to wage a war against whoever destroyed them -- and no pledge to keep Republicans in line.