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Web letter: Country tired of political games masquerading as principle

As a voter, I was dismayed during the November election to find that so many members of the U.S. House and Senate had signed the “no tax increase.” pledge of Grover Norquist.

Who is Grover Norquist anyway, and why should members of Congress be his pawns?)

According to Internet research, 271 members of Congress had signed Norquist’s pledge including my Rep. Marlin Stutzman and Sen. Dan Coats. Sen. Richard Lugar was one of the few Republican members of Congress who had not signed the pledge, and thereby, was targeted by far-right conservative interests during his primary election against Richard Mourdock.

Now, I don’t want my taxes to go up any more than anyone else, but in this time of economic crisis where a runaway deficit threatens our very future, I believe that all options for a solution ought to be on the table whether those options include spending cuts, tax increases, entitlement changes or code rewrites.

I was optimistic that as the deadline approached before the country went over the “fiscal cliff” that political posturing would finally end and our members of Congress would step up and act like statesmen putting the good of the country ahead of all politics. Alas, it seemed that a number of these far-right, conservative, pledgers of no tax increase, held Congress hostage against any fiscal compromise. There are still a few more days until Jan. 1 as I write this, but hope for statesmanship seems to be a dream--no Franklins, Madisons, Hamiltons in this group of lawmakers.

My wise wife pointed out to me that the irony is that while these few lawmakers absolutely refused to consider any type of tax increases for any income level including the wealthy as a matter of principle, they were willing to allow the U.S. to go over the fiscal cliff and bring on tax increases for everyone. Oh well, so much for principle.

Cynically, it was pointed out in an article in this morning’s paper that these "no tax increase pledgers" may allow taxes to increase after Jan. 1 so that later in the year they might make a deal on different tax rates and thereby, be able to say later, they cut our taxes.

C’mon, Congress, the country is pleading for you, our lawmakers, to act like you really care about us and the country and not treat us to these political games disguised as principles.

DAVID DEW Fort Wayne

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