Angus King Has a Smart Idea on the Bush Tax Cuts

A blog about business and economics.
Nov. 6 2012 8:02 PM

Angus King Has a Smart Idea on the Bush Tax Cuts

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Angus King

It looks like the Maine Senate race has been called in favor of "independent" (but de facto Democrat) candidate Angus King. His nonpartisan schtick is mostly annoying, but it's worth pointing out that it has led him to at least one excellent idea:

I was in favor of ending the Bush-era tax cuts immediately, but after continued poor employment numbers, we need a more nuanced approach. We should consider pegging the sunset of these tax cuts to something non-arbitrary, like a certain amount of GDP growth, or a lower level of unemployment. This would avoid the unproductive brinkmanship that Congress engages in over this issue – and could prevent our fragile recovery from being further slowed down.
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Democrats generally prefer the simplicity of arguing for higher taxes on the rich as soon as possible, but that kind of austerity is counterproductive in terms of short-term growth. King's alternative is better. He's also pushing for filibuster reform. So bravo.

Matthew Yglesias is the executive editor of Vox and author of The Rent Is Too Damn High.