Meet the man who may be responsible for the past failures to achieve a grand bargain, and who may be pushed aside as the GOP backs away from its total opposition to new tax revenue.
Always the polarizing figure, Norquist’s iron grip on GOP policy based upon his tax “pledge” was one of the major hold-ups in past conversations about fiscal policy.
As John Bennett reports, that’s slipping:
Several senior congressional Republicans over the long Thanksgiving weekend said they would buck the Norquist pledge if it meant getting a deal and avoiding a “fiscal cliff,” which economists say would be created by expiring tax cuts and by twin $500 billion cuts to planned federal defense and domestic spending that will take effect if no deal is in place by Jan. 2.
GOP Sens. Saxby Chambliss, Ga., Lindsey Graham, S.C., Bob Corker, Tenn., and Rep. Peter King of New York all signaled a deal is more important in this instance than a strict allegiance to the pledge.
During a Nov. 26 television interview, Rep. Eric Cantor, R-Va., had an opportunity to state his plans to vote against any deal that raises new revenues but he opted to not do so.
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