Tipton: Fiscal cliff deal must include debt cuts

U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, R-Colo., was prepared to support legislation in which taxes would increase on people earning $1 million a year, so long as the measure included provisions to pay down the national debt.

The debate over the budget and so-called fiscal cliff — a package of tax increases and spending cuts that will begin going into effect on Jan. 1 — missed an important issue, Tipton said Friday in a telephone interview.

“We’re not having a serious discussion about paying down the debt, and we need to start doing that now,” Tipton said. “Debt is consuming the economic vitality of this country.”

Tipton supported a measure that included debt-reduction as part of House Speaker John Boehner’s Plan B proposal containing a tax increase on high earners, but the measure failed, Tipton said.

When that happened, Boehner called a meeting of the Republican caucus, which he opened with the Serenity Prayer “with some adjustments because he wasn’t serene,” Tipton said.

“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference,” is the Serenity Prayer.

The House in August passed a measure extending the current tax code and Tipton said that with the failure of Plan B, it’s now up to President Barack Obama and Senate Democrats to come up with a response, noting that the Senate hasn’t passed a budget measure in three years.

President Obama is seeking to increase income, capital-gains, inheritance and other taxes on people earning $250,000 a year or more.

Even Boehner’s bid to increase taxes only on income of $1 million a year or more gave him heartburn, Tipton said, noting that a Pueblo construction business needing to make a significant capital investment in 20 new backhoes is paralyzed because it’s unclear how the business will be taxed in 2013, even at the $1 million income level.

Tipton flew home to Cortez on Friday, but had planned to remain in Washington, D.C., until Christmas in anticipation of completing a budget deal.

As it is, members of the House are on 48-hour notice to return should a deal take shape.

U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter, D-Lakewood, laid the blame on tea party members of the House and called for Republican leaders to “return to Plan A and get back to the negotiating table with the president.”

Tipton said he remains hopeful that the Senate will take up some House legislation, including a measure patterned after Katie’s Law in Colorado that would aid states in collecting DNA from certain criminals to aid in solving sexual-assault crimes.


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Both Tipton, and by extension his mouthpiece in Mesa County (Gary Harmon)clearly are good with talking points, but not so good in understanding the actual proposals and bills that are winding through the legislature. First Obamacare reduces deficits. Second the US does have too much debt; a problem that will only be solved over time, with both increases in revenue and decreases in spending. Third, the biggest contributor to both the deficit and the resulting debt increases is the bloated budget and spending of the military/industrial complex. We are a violent and war-like nation that needs to come to grip with the fact that spending on things that only get blown up does huge harm to both our economy and citizens of every nation on this planet. Peace on Earth, Goodwill to Men.

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