November 24th, 2009
07:52 PM ET
11 years ago

Pelosi keeps door open on war tax

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Speaker Pelosi said Tuesday that 'there is serious unrest' in the House Democratic Caucus over funding the Afghanistan war."]
Washington (CNN) - Speaker Nancy Pelosi kept the door open Tuesday to a proposal by several senior House Democrats to impose a graduated surtax on American taxpayers to finance the war in Afghanistan.

While Pelosi wasn't pressed about the details of the new war tax, she pointed to strong reservations among Congressional Democrats about the costs of the war during a conference call Tuesday with several economic writers and bloggers.

"But let me say that there is serious unrest in our Caucus about can we afford this war?" Pelosi said.

Two years ago when House Appropriations Chairman David Obey, D-Wisconsin, floated a similar war tax to pay for the war in Iraq, Pelosi quickly rejected it. But on Tuesday Pelosi said the costs of the war and the impact they will have on other domestic priorities should be part of the discussion over U.S. strategy in Afghanistan.

In addition to Obey, several senior Democrats close to Pelosi have signed on as co-sponsors of the "Share the Sacrifice Act." These include Defense Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman John Murtha, D-Pennsylvania, Ways and Means Chairman Charlie Rangel, D-New York, Financial Services Chairman Barney Frank, D-Massachusetts, and the third ranking House Democrat John Larson, D-Connecticut. Obey projects that an escalation of significantly more U.S. troops to Afghanistan will cost about $1 trillion over the next ten years.

Filed under: Afghanistan • Democrats • Extra • House • Nancy Pelosi • Popular Posts
soundoff (300 Responses)
  1. J W Simms S

    So the old porno granny Pelosi is considering a war tax is she? Makes me wonder if we should be fighting two wars we can't afford, will never win! and still rattle sabers with Iran, which will ultimately lead to another war which we will surely lose. I say lets just beg for forgiveness for our indiscretions, politely ask permission to surrender with "honor" and withdraw as quietly as possible, our troops and equipment from places we don't belong. Oh! and stay from Iran, we've already pissed them off enough. NO WAR TAX!!! J.W. Simms.

    November 24, 2009 10:01 pm at 10:01 pm |
  2. Stan

    It's YOUR war, you stupid witch! YOU pay for it.

    November 24, 2009 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
  3. Kevin

    TAX TAX TAX. You have got to be kidding me. Pelosi needs to go. I hope everyone who voted for Obama is happy and wanted this kind of change. I am personally preparing to give all of my money earned to taxes since that is where we are heading. How about now passing this stupid health care bill that we will be taxed for, for years to come. That would save some money to then pay for the wars and keep them off of our soil.

    November 24, 2009 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  4. cal

    this woman is a nut bag

    November 24, 2009 10:03 pm at 10:03 pm |
  5. Richard

    I am absolutely all over this. As long as we continue to shield the American people from the costs, and effects, of war, we are destined to continue the foreign policy of the few. It's time for the country to understand the consequences of bumper sticker logic that people hear on TV.

    November 24, 2009 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  6. valwayne

    What a shock! Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats favor another tax. And "The War Tax" what a nifty name! I've supported Obama's efforts to fight what he termed a necessary war because the consequences of turning Afghanistan and Pakistan over to the Taliban and Terrorists is to horrible to think about. However, Obama's months and months and months of dithering while our troops desperately needed more support has shown that he is unfit to be Commander in Chief to troop in harms way. We cannot and should not have troops dying for us when their Commander in Chieft doesn't believe in, nor support, their mission. We don't need the Democratic Nancy Pelosi War Tax. Bring them all home. With Obama as Commander in Chief we will need each and every one of them to defend us here in the homeland soon enough!!!

    November 24, 2009 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  7. sunny

    mmmm...let's see what the warmongering repubs say about this..."oh will bankrupt America!...But let's spend ourselves to oblivion when it comes to war!" 1 trillion for healthcare or 1 trillion for war?

    November 24, 2009 10:04 pm at 10:04 pm |
  8. John

    I voted for these clowns a year ago specifically to end the war, and instead they tax us for the war?

    November 24, 2009 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  9. Bman

    We should Tax Greed. Making a new tax and calling it a war tax is just showmanship. the problem is we've cut taxes on the wealthiest peopl for the last thirty years. We've allowed rampant greed to take hold and have it's way, with our whole society. Let me point out greed is not a virtue. Greed does not help society as a whole, and will, if left unchecked, erode the fabric of society. To tax such behavior is in the best interests of society.
    Turn the result of the tax toward the core of the problems afflicting our economy like addiction to gasoline, and turn the whole ship around.

    November 24, 2009 10:05 pm at 10:05 pm |
  10. Steve in VT

    but she thinks we can pay for her health bill

    what a dumb beaver

    November 24, 2009 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  11. Dave C

    That is the best idea I've heard in some time. The American public must share in the burden and what quicker way than through their pocketbook?

    A military draft comes to mind but I understand that the Army does is not in favor of this.

    A draft would shift the burden from a relatively small number of soldiers who must serve multiple tours of duty, and often come from economically disadvantaged circumstances, to potentially all American males of draft age. No deferments.

    Practically speaking, a draft would turn out to be a politcal threat that would end or drastically curtail our two wars.

    Cost-benefit: Are we better off spending $100B, roughly 1000 soldier deaths and roughly 7000 disabled soldiers per year on Afghanstan or could we achieve greater homeland security by spending this much (or less) blood and treasure elsewhere? Will Obama escalate for a real reason (cost-benefit) or for selfish reasons (legacy, reelection)?

    November 24, 2009 10:07 pm at 10:07 pm |
  12. alfred M.

    >But let me say that there is serious unrest in our Caucus about can we >afford this war?" Pelosi said
    Easy to answer, bring your soldiers back home, otherwise you'll finish getting 99% of our salaries in taxes and it won't be enough.
    Have you ever had time to review the tax's history, Amazing!!!

    November 24, 2009 10:09 pm at 10:09 pm |
  13. Lou

    For $1 trillion can hire ur own army. Why bother sending our army?

    November 24, 2009 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  14. beckjr2000

    Nancy hasn't seen a proposed tax yet that she didn't like! After all she knows that the Dems have a better use for your money than you do!

    November 24, 2009 10:11 pm at 10:11 pm |
  15. RJJ-AZ

    It's about time someone besides the troops and their families shoulder the burden for these wars. I'm all for it and would be willing to pay my fair share.

    November 24, 2009 10:13 pm at 10:13 pm |
  16. GG

    I like some things about the Dems but I absolutely hate the fact that they are always looking for some new tax, some new opportunity to take money that I work hard to earn. My job isn't easy, I work very hard and I don't want my money taken away to give free stuff (food, housing, healthcare) to lazy people. I earn an honest living and live within my budget and feel like I already pay too much in taxes. I wish the Dems would stop pushing for tax increases.

    November 24, 2009 10:16 pm at 10:16 pm |
  17. Jon from Madison

    Pelosi? Open to taxing people? Get out of here. Of course she is open to taxing people. If she creates a new tax, 60% of the money can go t o our troops and 40% can be misappropriated to Pelosi, and the rest of the crooks in congress, special projects. Kick all the incumbents out. They were the one's who created this mess, not just Bush.

    November 24, 2009 10:17 pm at 10:17 pm |
  18. Dave

    They are seriously complaining about the cost of the war? Congress has proposed a HUGE health care plan and are giving out money like candy to corporations and they are worried about the war cost?

    November 24, 2009 10:18 pm at 10:18 pm |
  19. George

    I guess this would help even things out. Bush gave tax cuts during 2 wars and you see where that got us. Less taxes for his buddies that stole our 401 k's and devastated our banking as well. Someone has to help clean up the mess created by George Bush. Afghanistan was
    a must at that time. Iraq never attacked us, but George had to show up daddy. Make sure the thieves in neckties that stole from us pay dearly also. And let's regulate wall street and our banks. We see where de-regulation got us.

    November 24, 2009 10:19 pm at 10:19 pm |
  20. Jeffer65

    Here's an idea, End it! Bring the troops home. Or make Cheney pay for it. What a bunch of crap! A war tax. We have enough taxes already. Bye bye Dems in 2010.

    November 24, 2009 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  21. Concerned Citizen

    Ms. Pelosi needs to rethink the "war tax". She is the one, a few months ago, that recommended that Congress buys more Gulfstream jets so she could fly nonstop to California over the 4th of July. There should be a cut on pork barrel spending not an increase of taxes. Want to fund the war Madam Speaker? Quit wasting the Americans hard earned money on planes and use that money for something more reasonable, like oh I don't know the war, our huge deficit the current administration has put us in, or better yet lower taxes to allow more money to be present in the economy.
    Your Humble Servant,
    a Concerned Citizen

    November 24, 2009 10:22 pm at 10:22 pm |
  22. George Washington

    Isn't it time we got out of the Afghanistan civil war? Because that is what it is, the Taliban vs the Northern alliance. America's fight is against al-Qaeda, but there is no money to be made attacking a group that numbers in the hundreds. There would be no need to spend trillions of dollars, use 100,000 troops, hundreds of planes to hunt down a few nut jobs. What is wrong with our military thats needs ships, planes, tanks, and a 100 to 1 or more advantage to kill a few thousand men with no ships, no planes, no tanks, and after 8 years we still can't get the job done. Are we even trying, or are we just feeding the weapon industry? If that is the case, there will never be an end, who would want to miss out on all that free tax money.

    Keep it green

    November 24, 2009 10:24 pm at 10:24 pm |
  23. Glenn

    I see no difference between Bush and Obama or the Dems and Republicans or the so called Conservatives and the Liberals. Bottom line is that America is getting screwed. Can you say 3rd party?

    November 24, 2009 10:27 pm at 10:27 pm |
  24. Flex

    Tax every military loving republican, bible thumping state with the war tax. The crazy security zealots should put their money where their mouth is. The democrats can't expect their supporters to pay for the useless, violent wars!

    November 24, 2009 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
  25. J.C. - Independent 4 Public Option

    At least, in Afghanistan, there has been no inter-racial violence like Sunni vs. Shiite. I think the Afghanistan war will be more hopeful if we put our mind to it. We have not heard much news from Iraq recently. Let's hope no news is good news.

    November 24, 2009 10:28 pm at 10:28 pm |
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