Friday, June 04, 2021

A Mere Extremist Among Extreme Extremists

Axios' Hans Nichols reports

President Joe Biden has proposed focusing on a minimum corporate tax rate of 15%, as well as increased Internal Revenue Service funding, as a way to to pay for a possible infrastructure package, White House press secretary Jen Psaki confirmed Thursday.

Driving the news: The proposal could could help negotiations with Senate Republicans. Biden made the offer in his meeting yesterday with Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R- W.Va.) who is leading a group of GOP centrists trying to find a compromise on infrastructure spending.

Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) who is leading a group of GOP centrists.  Her voting record includes opposition to President Biden's $1.2 trillion coronavirus relief package despite inclusion in the bill of one amendment sponsored, and two amendments co-sponsored, by Senator Capito herself.

Capito did not consider the legislation "fiscally responsible," though in December 2017 she had voted for President Trump's tax cut for corporations and the wealthy, though (perhaps partly because) it was expected to add approximately $1 trillion to the deficit in the following ten years. (Even her West Virginia colleague, the center-right Joe Manchin, voted against this giveaway to the most fortunate.) No Senate Republican voted against the Trump income tax cut and none voted for President Biden's bill to help people through the pandemic. Of course.

Senator Capito did vote for certifying the 2020 presidential election, which should not qualify her for sainthood. She voted to oppose the January 6 commission, proposed to investigate the attempted coup which would have overturned the presidential election.  The vast majority of GOP senators had voted twice to acquit Donald Trump after he was impeached, as did Senator Capito. Of course.

In January, 2018 Senate Capito voted in favor of moving to the the floor a bill plainly unconstitutionally criminalizing performance of an abortion "probably" 20 or more weeks post-fertilization. The woman who requested and paid for the procedure would have been held blameless because, well, to do otherwise would lay bare the intent of the legislation, to deny women reproductive rights.  Though there was only one vote because the move to invoke cloture failed 51-48, only two Republicans (Maine's Collins and Alaska's Murkowski) voted against bringing it to the floor for a vote. Of course.

Senator Capito has a more moderate voting record than do most of her GOP colleagues. But that doesn't make her a centrist. In July, 2017, shortly before all but three Republicans voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act and send health care spiraling downward, Bernie Sanders reminded Chris Hayes (video below) that the GOP is "a right-wing extremist party."  It was more reasonable then.



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