The deficit is a huge dilemma that’s too big for one party to solve, say the pundits and various deficit scolds. (Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles: “Neither party can fix this problem on its own, and both parties have a responsibility to do their part.) Nonsense, I say. There’s a really easy, and 100 percent partisan, answer: Just let all the Bush tax cuts expire. President Obama can accomplish this without negotiations, compromise of any sort, or even putting aside petty agendas for the national good.
...is that neither side really wants the Bush middle class tax cuts. In 2001 Republicans really wanted to cut taxes for high-income earners, either out of a belief in the enormous sensitivity of high-income earners to marginal tax rates or a deep-seated moral opposition to the principle of progressive taxation.
American Enterprise Institute economist Alan Viard, former member of George W. Bush's Council of Economic Advisors, laments the end of the upper-income Bush tax cuts. It happened, Viard argues, because Bush failed to properly sell the upper-income tax cuts: [T]he high-income rate reductions provide much greater incentive for investment and other economic activity, relative to revenue loss, than the middle-class tax cuts.