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On the Offensive: Senate Dems Consider Tax Hikes

Rather than compromise to cut discretionary spending, Senate Dems are reportedly considering raising taxes to boost federal revenue and broaden the budget debate, The Hill reports:

Democrats feel they have been boxed by Republicans into a debate over cutting discretionary spending, which accounts for a mere 12 percent of the federal budget. Democratic senators say they have been fighting on the defensive, scrambling to protect social spending — such as that for the Women, Infants and Children nutrition program, Planned Parenthood and NPR — from GOP-proposed cuts.

Democrats want to take the offensive and propose higher tax rates for millionaires, companies that move factories overseas and wealthy people who make charitable contributions.  Senior lawmakers say the debate over spending levels for the rest of 2011 is too far along to begin insisting that a six-month stopgap include tax increases to reduce the $1.6 trillion deficit.

But they say tax policy changes should be part of the debate over the 2012 budget. That debate will kick off next week when House Republicans are expected to introduce their 2012 spending plan.

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