On Sunday’s broadcast of ABC’s “This Week,” Republican South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham told host George Stephanopoulos that he’d be willing to violate Americans for Tax Reform head Grover Norquist’s anti-tax pledge if it meant averting the looming fiscal cliff.
“When you’re $16 trillion in debt, the only pledge we should be making to each other to avoid becoming Greece,” Graham said. “Republicans should put revenue on the table. … Raising taxes will hurt job creation. So, I agree with Grover. We shouldn’t raise rates, but I think Grover is wrong when it comes to, ‘We can’t cap deductions and buy-down debt.’ What do you do with the money — you buy down debt and cut rates to create jobs. But I will violate the pledge, long story short, for the good of the country, only if Democrats will do entitlement reform.”
Most Republican lawmakers, including Graham, have signed Norquist’s decades-old pledge, which calls on members to “oppose any and all efforts to increase the marginal income tax rates for individuals and/or businesses … and oppose any net reduction or elimination of deductions and credits, unless matched dollar for dollar by further reducing tax rates.”