Conservatives Warn on Lame Duck…Kerry Reveals Why

Although the election is still months away, many in Washington are already thinking about what happens after the election, in a lame-duck session of Congress.  In recent years, these post-election sessions have brought us numerous bad policies – most recently the New START Treaty – and there is no reason to think things will be different this time around.

Today in the Washington Examiner, Heritage Action’s CEO Michael A. Needham and COO Tim Chapman sound the alarm:

The Left’s game plan is to create a crisis scenario. Rahm Emanuel’s maxim, to never let a good crisis go to waste, has been internalized by the party. Democrats won when there were swirling crisis winds in the economic disaster of 2008; they won when they stirred up a false crisis leading to the BCA; and, if conservatives don’t get wise to it, they will win in a lame-duck session.

In the run up to last summer’s Budget Control Act, which raised the nation’s debt ceiling, Heritage Action warned the deal would inevitably lead to “massive tax hikes, massive defense cuts, or both.”  By design, that bill comes due after the election, and according to The Hill, Senator John Kerry (D-MA) is eager for a fight:

Still, Democrats would prefer to see substantial tax increases, such as closing corporate breaks or a variety of tax loopholes, instead.

“It’s a mistake to start offsetting one component of the sequester. The sequester was made tough on purpose in order to get the whole job done,” said Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), a member of the 2011 supercommittee, when asked about GOP efforts to stop automatic defense cuts. 

“We’re not just going to look at a fee or an asset sale. We’ll look at revenue. Generic, broad-based revenue, and that’s what the fight is about,” he said.

For the proponents of big government, this fight is about raising revenue – “generic, broad-based revenue.”  And they are setting up a legislative scenario to force tax hikes on the American people.  Needham and Chapman see a different way, though:

Conservatives should refuse to play their game and instead pass a continuing resolution now that funds the government until the next Congress has begun. Conservatives should also pass measures through the House that would permanently eliminate the $500 billion tax hike and prevent the gutting of our defense capability. This would force President Obama and Harry Reid to either acquiesce or explain their position to the American people.

It is good advice; and rather than repeating history, lawmakers should take it.

Read the Needham-Chapman OpEd at

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