December 1st, 2009
04:39 PM ET
9 months ago

Pelosi pours cold water on war surtax

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says a war surtax does not have 'a good prospect.'
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says a war surtax does not have 'a good prospect.'

Washington (CNN) - Speaker Nancy Pelosi Tuesday poured cold water on a proposal by several top House Democrats to impose a new surtax to pay for the war in Afghanistan.

Pelosi told CNN, "I think the war has to be paid for. That may be one option, but I don't think that has a good prospect."

The surtax proposal–a graduated tax on most taxpayers–was put forth recently by a number of senior Democrats and close allies of Pelosi, including: House Appropriations Chairman David Obey, D-Wisconsin; Defense Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman John Murtha, D-Pennsylvania; Ways and Means Committee Chairman Charlie Rangel, D-New York; and House Democratic Caucus Chairman John Larson, D-Connecticut.

Pelosi, who has expressed concerns about increasing the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan, is scheduled to meet with President Obama Tuesday afternoon to hear details on his new war strategy. She declined to comment on the President's decision to send another 30,000 troops.

"What I've said to the members is: Listen to what the President has to say. Give him room to give his justifications. We will all have something to say about it then."


Filed under: David Obey • Nancy Pelosi • Taxes
soundoff (49 Responses)
  1. Jane

    Oh oh Nancy must be looking into the crystal election ball in 2012. Another flip flop congressman–hopefully the great people of CA will vote her out and put some new blood in (don't hold your breath though they reelected her last year). Apparently she is on a power trip in her own mind.

    December 1, 2009 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  2. Nevada dude

    I knew you GOP hypocirtes would fold like lawn chairs. lets see, health care reform is an "unfunded mandate" that sells out our children's future, but fighting a war on a credit card isnt. Im calling bull on you guys.
    fact is this is the best idea for ending the war. once the hawks actually have to make a sacrifice for the war, then they suddenly dont have as much of an appetite for blood. we should have done this long ago, the wars would have been over by now.

    December 1, 2009 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  3. Dan

    Tax increase democrats will find any excuse to do it!
    This time it is your guy engaging in war increase and you have to deal with it: doubling unpopular measures will not help you guys!

    December 1, 2009 06:04 pm at 6:04 pm |
  4. Who's gonna pay for this stinkin war?

    It's unfortunate these fool war mongers don't realize that a war tax is meant as a way to get idiots like them to work against the war. They're all against tax, tax, tax, but they say yes, yes, yes to the war. Do they think it's free to fight a war? Bush got around this by not putting the war costs in the budget, so people were not clued into how much it was actually costing. Obama at least is being up front about the costs. This whole issue has the right wingers undies in a bunch: support the war and increase the deficit or raise taxes. You can't have one without the other. I'm curious how the war mongers and teabaggers would respond to this.

    December 1, 2009 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  5. Richard-Arkansas

    If a graduated income tax surcharge had been put on when the wars started. you can be sure the Republicans would have made sure they were over in 6 monthes. I would suggested an upper limit of 8% starting at 1% on incomes above $250,000 and going up 1% for every $250,000 until it maxes out and keep it in effect until ALL of the war costs are re-paid to the Treasury.

    I would expect the Tea Baggers to back this fully as a way to get rid of the Bush II deficit legacy!

    December 1, 2009 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  6. J-STIZLE ( Oakland, Calif. )

    Mr. President , please don't be sucked in by all the right wingers out there. You don't have to kiss their asses just to show that you believe in working "across party lines ". You're the boss now. So ACT like it.
    Bush would never have tried to "please" you if he were President.
    Bring all the troops home NOW. As one African American male to another ..... you don't have to prove to your enemies that you can work with them. Do them the same way they do us ..... SCREW "EM !!
    They could care less about you anyway. They didn't vote for you the first time , and they're NOT going to vote for you the second time. The fact of the matter is ..... you don't need them anyway. You're ALREADY a lock to win in 2012. They don't have a strong enough candidate to defeat you.

    December 1, 2009 06:39 pm at 6:39 pm |
  7. T'SAH from Virginia

    PELOSI was in FULL VIEW each time President Obama gave speeches during his campaign and she PROUDLY stood up each time President Obama stressed that the was would END in Iraq and we had to FINISH the war in Afghanistan.

    PELOSI – among almost EVERY other congress-person, senator, etc. also STOOD UP and CHEERED!!!

    NOW – they want to CRITICIZE and JUMP SHIP when a decision was made.............. SHAME ON YOU!!!

    The VOTERS too – all CHEERED and got behind President Obama concerning Afghanistan and now, they also want to JUMP SHIP and CRITICIZE!!!...........YA'LL MAKE ME SICK!!

    December 1, 2009 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  8. Jim

    I was actually for this tax because we as a country have been irresponsible to wage wars without asking the public to finance them. It endangers our national security because we borrowed an equivalent amount of money from China and we have to bow to their wishes until we pay them back.

    December 1, 2009 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  9. Enough

    Pelosi spent 3,000 tax payer dollars from June-Oct for flowers! How can this woman spend OUR money on flowers. Let's just cut out all these perks for these politicians and we won't need to raise any taxes on anybody.

    December 1, 2009 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  10. ran

    Tax the people who most benefited from Bush giving away the surplus created by Clinton.

    Also, as long as we are at war add a 1 to 5 cent war tax to every purchase. We all should have to be involved.

    December 1, 2009 07:00 pm at 7:00 pm |
  11. Party Purity will never bring Political Power!

    Sorry, Nancy, but the war tax is a good idea.

    To date just the troops and their families have made sacrifices, is way past time for all of America to make some sacrifices for these wars.

    December 1, 2009 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  12. Ben

    Which is it Republicans:

    Do You Want To:

    A. Continue the War and Pay for it, and then complain Obama is raising taxes.
    B. Continue the War, don't pay for it and blame Obama for "rabid liberal spending that raises deficits"
    C. End the War, blame Obama for "cutting and running".
    D. Just complain until 2012, and then elect Sarah Palin, who will magically save us all (admittedly, she is good at quitting things)

    December 1, 2009 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  13. demo no mas

    Either go in to a war, completely, or get the Hell out. I'm so furious with Obama for delaying on his decision for so long without any direction. When you're on the ground a day can be a lifetime. Lead them or bring them home, right now. No more Nam, we did that and messed up my generation.

    December 1, 2009 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  14. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    It's not the war we need to pay for, it's the contractors that built all the war equipment that we must pay. Afghan and Iraq was just a good place to dump it in and leave it while contractors made more. Has anyone out there been listening to President Obama when he stopped some of these contracts. Wakeup out there people and stop listening to what they say but what they aren't saying. WAKEUP

    December 1, 2009 07:16 pm at 7:16 pm |
  15. Catty

    For all the suggestions that republicans pay the war tax, how about the liberals foot the bill for your socialized healthcare?

    December 1, 2009 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  16. Angi's Mom

    Tax payers have already given a blank check to the military and their contracts. Bring our troops home now.

    December 1, 2009 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  17. Nathan

    Double the taxes of everyone who was for this war then or now. Leave the rest of us alone. Healthcare? Feh. We can't even fund our Middle Eastern misadventures.

    December 1, 2009 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  18. mark gower

    We pay Federal Income Taxes already and the primary purpose of those funds, I thought, is to insure and provide for the defense of the Country....not everything is solved by raising taxes and in fact I feel the ground swell of a tax rebellion where I live.
    I agree with Pelosi that this tax is not the way to go, although I'm sure our Democratic leaders will find some new and mysterious way to milk the tax teat yet again to pay for the fiasco in Afganistan.
    Get out while the gettin's good.

    December 1, 2009 07:31 pm at 7:31 pm |
  19. kas

    I cannot believe this woman was ever elected to anything other than Avon lady..Good grief.

    December 1, 2009 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  20. Four and The Door

    She declined to comment on the President's decision to send another 30,000 troops.
    _________________________________________________
    Let's say this decision was not a ringing endorsement of Speaker Pelosi's political power. We all know she would rather we high tail it outa there and let future generations of Americans worry about the Taliban and Al Quaeda while she spent our money on growing government. I do think it would be more fun however if she tried to fight him on this.

    This was one of his best decisions as President in both regards.

    December 1, 2009 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  21. Debby

    This woman is such an idiot blaming key Dems. when she is the one who proposed this tax.

    December 1, 2009 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  22. MN in VA

    Hey Minnesota – if Americans only paid taxeson things they supported your precious welfare programs would be the first to bite the dust. If you can't feed 'em, don't breed 'em!

    Government involvement in programs not explicitly outlined in the Constitution (which a military coincidentally is) should be trashed and we should start over!

    December 1, 2009 08:18 pm at 8:18 pm |
  23. Unemployed In Iowa because of Obama

    Democrates equall New Taxes, and lookie lookie, Pelosi is running scared now, Raise My Taxes, I Vote You Out.

    December 1, 2009 08:34 pm at 8:34 pm |
  24. Albo58

    This witch wants her fellow far left loons to give THIS President some room, but did everything to hinder THAT President that actually had the guts to go after the culprits who brought us 9/11 in the first place! She is a complete party hack and a definite enemy of anyone that puts our country in front of their own/political party needs!

    December 1, 2009 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
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