Norquist: Democrats are lying
November 21st, 2011
12:13 PM ET
8 years ago

Norquist: Democrats are lying

(CNN) – Notorious anti-tax crusader Grover Norquist said Democrats who've blamed him for the super committee's bipartisan budget gridlock are simply lying.

The president of Americans for Tax Reform encouraged Republican members of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction to sign a pledge that binds them to resist raising taxes as they work to find $1.2 trillion dollars in deficit-cutting measures by Wednesday, but on CNN's "American Morning," he said the pledge was between the country and its congressmen, and not with him.

Programming note: GOP presidential candidates face off at 8 p.m. ET Tuesday, November 22, in the CNN Republican National Security Debate in Washington, D.C.

Democratic Sen. Patty Murray called Norquist out Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union" saying his name came up too often during super committee negotiations.

"As long as we have some Republican lawmakers who feel more enthralled with a pledge they took to a Republican lobbyist than they do to a pledge to the country to solve the problems, this is going to be hard to do," she said.

Norquist fired back Monday.

"The senator is not telling the truth," he argued.

"For the congressmen and senators who signed the taxpayer protection pledge, they and the American people know the pledge is from them to the voters of their district and their state."

And although he admitted, "they have tried to say I'm the reason Republicans won't raise taxes, that's not nonsense," Norquist directed blame back at Democrats saying, "The Democrats want higher taxes. That's off the table."

"It's been off the table for a year," he continued. "The Democrats are a little hard of hearing."

Defending his role in promoting the pledge, first signed by President Ronald Reagan in 1986, Norquist insisted again, "The pledge that congressmen and senators make is not to me despite what Reid and other Democrats pretend. When they say that, let's use the kind word. It's not true. It's a lie."

Filed under: Congress • Debt • Deficit • Deficit commission • Democrats • Grover Norquist • Taxes
soundoff (420 Responses)
  1. TC

    Both Republicans and Democrats are puppets to greedy "Corporate America"!! When will the American people wake up to realize that their votes no longer count? Only when the majority vote supersedes will anything matter...meanwhile we watch all branches of government cater to $$. So nothing will ever change because we, as a people, are screwed!!

    November 21, 2011 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  2. sd

    Norquist and all the Congressmen and women who signed his pledge need to be investigated for treason for impeached from office for not doing the people's business. Norquist belongs in jail. NOW!!!!!!!!!!!

    November 21, 2011 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  3. KeithTexas

    There is one Liar and Thief calling the Scoundrels and Thieves liars. I say that is as close to circular logic as you can get.

    November 21, 2011 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  4. James

    Dems can't stop spending your money.

    November 21, 2011 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  5. John

    Why are Republicans signing a pledge to a LOBBYIST?? Am I the only one with warning alarms going off?

    November 21, 2011 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  6. Lynn

    Having seen him on Washington Journal numerous times, as well as the interview last night..........this man literally makes my skin crawl. No one person should wield the sort of power that he does.

    November 21, 2011 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  7. FLIndependent

    "Obama created the most divided country in our history since the civil war"
    President Obama has not divided our country. The spinmasters and the GOP lies have divided the country. Everyone wanted health care reform and a lot of what the bill entails is very good for many people. It got watered down due to the Repubs, so please spare us the lie that this bill is all of what Obama & the Dems is not.

    November 21, 2011 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  8. SoSad

    Attention all senior citizens, Medicare, Medical, Social Security will be cut because Norquist and the Republicans will not tax Big Business and will not tax the top 1%. Norquitst said that God does not want to tax his friends! Seniors lose!

    November 21, 2011 02:02 pm at 2:02 pm |
  9. BioHzrd420

    I didn't realize Grover got to decide what's off the table. Last I checked, it isn't off the table to many americans.

    November 21, 2011 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  10. Jon

    If Grover Norquist were a race, I would welcome its genocide

    November 21, 2011 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  11. Jaxon65

    This shows again how stupid Grover thinks the American public is. The 'pledge' is with the tax payer and not him? Then how come whenever someone suggests they break it he brings up HW Bush and says "So how did his 2nd term go?" The implied threat is all your funding will be pulled. I never asked my congressman to sign the pledge but he did anyway? Why is that?
    The reason Norquist and those like him get their way is that all congressman on both sides of the aisle are bought and paid for before they are even elected. Norquist is the first to actually get them to sign something proving it.

    November 21, 2011 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  12. taylor

    i saw him on 60 minutes last night, his arrogance is amazing, he is a little toad,
    with grand illusions.

    November 21, 2011 02:03 pm at 2:03 pm |
  13. Dave

    Republicans are not opposed to increased revenue. Every year the Government budget automatically increases and everyone accepts that. This debate is about letting the Government increase tax RATES or to tax something that is not currently being taxes. Republicans are opposed to piling on rate increases on top of the inflation / GDP increases that already are built in. If your salary has grown 50%, the taxes you pay have already increased much more than 50% already. If you doubt me, go back and look at the taxes you paid in the Reagan years and compare it to today.

    November 21, 2011 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  14. Jrod

    If the pledge is between the elected officials and the American people, I certainly don't remember asking anyone to sign it.

    November 21, 2011 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  15. Politicians lie

    He is correct in what he is saying, meaning that if in campaign that got a politician elected, they promised no taxes, why would they do the opposite when in office? Did they get smarted after they got elected, to forget about the promises? No. So I think it is only fair, if you promised something during campaign, to keep your word, no matter how unpopulat that is with the oposite party and press.

    November 21, 2011 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  16. outawork

    Democrats are lying: isn't that redundant?

    November 21, 2011 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  17. Darth Cheney

    Norquist is one of the guys who developed the "starve the beast" strategy. This is the whole demonization of all non-military spending while fomenting anti-tax sentiment, until the government doesn't have the resources for even providing for programs. There are not too many truly evil people around. This guy, however, is one of them – a living, breathing Ebenezer Scrooge.

    November 21, 2011 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  18. maggie

    Who elected YOU to anything? The fact that Republicans have signed a pledge TO YOU rather than to the American people, irrespective of what you stand for, makes it very clear that as voters, we need to throw the bums out.

    November 21, 2011 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  19. m500

    Why is this guy telling Congressmen what is on or off the table? Was he elected to Congress? How could Republicans allow a lobbyist to gain so much power over their vote?

    November 21, 2011 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  20. Scott, Philadelphia, PA

    Grover lies, here's why. The pledge is his baby. Congressmen represent the people by freely holding office and getting elected. Pledges are something different. It is simply a method of arm twisting by lobbyists like him.

    November 21, 2011 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  21. marinedad05

    All these Repubs have sold their interests in protecting the country to this half-baked right-wing idealist.

    He is the one who is lying. Norquist's name has been popping up all over the place, ever since the 'pledge' was signed.

    Is this pledge, some kind of cult pledge?

    The interests of the country comes first, you darn idiots!

    November 21, 2011 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  22. patriot

    "james – St. Paul, MN

    Norquist is an unelected citizen. He has repeatedly stated that his goal is to destroy the Federal Government. To that end, he has asked our legislators to make pledges that prevent them from fulfilling their civic duty. For some reason, those legislators feel their pledge to Mr. Norquist is more important than their pledge to serve the nation honestly and properly. Both the legislators who signed his pledge and Mr. Norquist should be thrown out of Washington, with the message that they are unwelcome."

    Bravo. Excellent post and one I highly agree with.

    November 21, 2011 02:05 pm at 2:05 pm |
  23. RINO Bil

    Any member of the House or the Senate, who is stupid enough to let this guy influence you to the detriment of the country as a whole does not deserve to be in government, period!

    November 21, 2011 02:06 pm at 2:06 pm |
  24. TexasAnnie

    I want to know who made Norquist God?? This guy is just too suspect to me.

    November 21, 2011 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  25. Wired

    Dear Grover: Thanks for speaking and removing all doubt that you are ignorant.

    So, let's get this straight: Grover thinks he speaks for all of America, and the answer to a Dem is lying about why the republicans aren't cooperating across party lines is based on who the pledge was signed to? Nice try.

    How about we sue Grover for Libel and for forcing us into a contract we never signed for.

    November 21, 2011 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
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