Stateside,  The Right

Not coddling the rich, Republican style

Earlier this week Alan A linked to a New York Times op-ed piece by billionaire Warren Buffett, titled “Stop Coddling the Super-Rich,” in which he called for higher taxes on him and other wealthy people.

Rather defensively, Republicans have latched onto the talking point that if rich people want to give more of their money to the federal government, they can do so voluntarily.

At a town hall meeting in Sandwich, Illinois, Republican Congressman Randy Hultgren faced constituents denouncing his opposition to raising taxes on the rich. At one point Hultgren tried to defend his stand:

HULTGREN: I’m not out there trying to coddle anybody. In fact, I support a bill that allows the super rich if they want to give more money to the federal government it could be a charitable contribution.

(audience laughter)

HULTGREN: I think that makes sense! Use it as a charitable contribution.

Damn right. Let’s stop coddling the super-rich! Let’s force them to, um, be able to make voluntary contributions to the federal government and get tax deductions for it. That’ll show them!

Some Republican members of Congress have decided to bypass the whole nasty business of free town hall meetings open to unhappy constituents. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, chairman of the powerful House Budget Committee (whom we last encountered at a Washington, DC, restaurant buying a $350 bottle of wine) is planning to charge constituents $15 for the privilege of meeting with him during the August recess.

On Thursday seven of Ryan’s unemployed constituents staged a sit-in at his Kenosha office to protest the lack of free access to meetings with him, while others picketed outside.

Update: Jon Stewart again. Watch:

(Hat tip: BabbaZee)