In the battle over the Bush tax cuts that President Obama kicked off Monday, Republicans have one thing on their side: discipline.
It’s been 22 years since a Republican member of Congress voted to raise income taxes. There’s a good reason for this: When George H.W. Bush made a deal with Democrats to raise taxes in 1990, it triggered a GOP civil war, with the anti-tax absolutists claiming victory. Since then, the party’s congressional ranks have been split in two groups: those who adamantly believe that any and every revenue increase will wreck the economy, and those who fear the primary challenge and ostracism that would come from challenging this belief.
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