Presidential hopeful Herman Cain says President Barack Obama is being “disingenuous” with the American people when he says the supercommittee’s failure to reach an agreement on debt reduction and a lack of further congressional action will lead to a tax increase on the middle class. The truth is if Obama eliminates the Bush tax cuts then everyone will have to pay higher taxes, Cain told Fox News’ Martha MacCallum Tuesday night after the Republican debate.
“Martha, it is disappointing that the president is being disingenuous, quite frankly, with the American people — what he’s not talking about is that if they don’t pass something to extend the current tax rates that they keep calling the Bush tax cuts, everybody is going to be hit with a tax increase,” Cain said. “Secondly, the piece that he’s talking about is relative to the payroll tax — a lot of people didn’t even feel it the last time they did it.
“This is another example of nibbling around the edges — this economy is on life support,” he said. “And rather than deal with a serious solution about how we get everybody’s income up because the economy is growing and because 14 million people will get back to work, he is playing class warfare talking about if Congress doesn’t act, what it will do to the middle class family — it is the same old tax issue.”
Cain — who in recent weeks has faced allegations of sexual harassment and lack of foreign policy knowledge — said he came away from the debate, where national security was the focus, satisfied.
“I believe that I did fairly well — and whenever I finish a debate, I get an honest assessment from my staff — and their assessment agreed with mine, because over the last several months, Martha, I have been doing a lot of homework,” Cain said. “I have had some consultants and advisory with four people who were assistant department of defense secretaries — I met with two former ambassadors — I have talked and been briefed by three or four generals.
“So I have a much better knowledge base in terms of shaping my perspective now than I had, say, two months ago,” he said. “So it’s a work in process but I felt real good about tonight.”
McCallum asked Cain — in light of the supercommittee implosion — what he would have done differently if he was in charge of the debt-reduction panel.
“Let’s back up a little bit: First of all, I wouldn’t have had a supercommittee — we have 222 committees in Congress right now,” Cain said. “Here is what I would have done: I would have gotten the leaders of both houses of Congress together — both the majority and the minority . . . in a room without all the advisors and say: Look, we’ve got to do something.
“Here’s the other thing I would do at president: I will expose the Democrats class warfare line. Every time they want to do something they start talking about taxes on the rich,” he said. “I have a breaking news announcement: There are rich and they are going to stay rich. I want other people to get rich, which is why I totally want to replace the tax code and replace it with something that would give everybody an opportunity. I would debunk the whole class warfare card that some people are falling for at step one, and then be honest and truthful with the people.”
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