Many Republicans in Congress have signed Grover Norquist’s no-tax pledge. Norquist’s group, Americans for Tax Reform, has convinced these folks to ignore their commitment to the Constitution of the United States in favor of guidance from, and a pledge of allegiance to, an organization that has no accountability and no status as anything but a special interest group.
What about the oath of office they took pledging to uphold and defend the Constitution? If they believe themselves to be incapable of making informed decisions about taxes, they should say so, there are people who can help explain the issues to them. If they look to a lobbyist to tell them how to do their job, and promise to forever do his bidding, perhaps they’re in the wrong place.
This behavior is offensive to me, not because I want to pay more in taxes, but because I want our elected representatives to do their jobs based on what’s best for the country, not what they’re told to do by a lobbyist. Imagine the chaos we’ll have when these non-thinkers begin to pledge their votes to other special interest groups. We should be able to trust them to vote their conscience, but we also expect them to consider the needs and wishes of their constituents and the nation as a whole. This commitment they’ve made functionally tells the folks back home, “I don’t care how you feel about things, Grover Norquist is my guide.”
Beyond the abdication of responsibility they’ve agreed to, very few political positions can (or should) withstand a blanket, inflexible yea or nay; times change. Regarding taxes, we happen to be in the middle of a very expensive war. Do these non-thinkers believe we should pursue our enemies only if we can do so without incurring any costs? Perhaps their vision of an all-volunteer military is quite literal.
I love my country. I want our members of Congress to live up to their oath of office, to pledge allegiance to the flag and to the Constitution, not to a puppeteer whose personal goals contradict the very nature of our republic. It strikes me that members of Congress who have chosen to commit themselves, and by extension their votes, to someone outside the government, it borders on treason. Those of us who take the time to vote should consider these facts in our choices.