Steve Brawner writes in his latest Stephens Media column that pledges to never raise taxes or never cut Social Security are pushing party leaders to the point of no compromise.
Citing Americans for Tax Reform and the Social Security Protectors, two hardline groups that have garnered commitments from nearly 80% of Congress, Brawner contends that we're heading for a fiscal train wreck with a no way out clause.
He says a commitment to the Constitution and recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance ought to be enough commitment to dutifully do your job in Congress.
The budget can’t be balanced unless income equals outgo. It would be good if members of Congress would work together to responsibly increase revenues and reform Social Security. Unfortunately, 80 percent of them have promised never to do that.
Enough with the pledges to these special interest groups. The oath of office and the Pledge of Allegiance are enough. In every relation
ship in life, compromise and cooperation are necessary to get things done, especially when circumstances change. A bride and groom promise at the altar to love, honor and cherish, but they don’t get specific about who does the dishes because sometimes one or the other has to work late. In PTAs, churches, civic clubs, whatever, nobody gets what they want every time. Congress isn’t exempt from that fact of life.
Despite all of these pledges, at some point in the future there will be an agreement where taxes are raised and Social Security benefits are reduced – if not for current recipients, then for future ones. It will happen in one of two circumstances — while Congress is choosing to be responsible, or in the midst of a crisis, as is happening in Greece.
Read his full column here.