Taxes and self interest
October 19, 2012 Leave a comment
I found it interesting in Tuesday’s debate that when Obama attacked Romney on his tax plan he also took the opportunity to attack Romney directly on the low rates he was paying. Maybe I’m wrong, but I don’t recall him doing that before. And, for reason as Romney’s plan reduces rates on earned income whereas Romney’s personally low rates result from the fact that almost all his earnings are capital gains. Anyway, I think this may actually be a particularly effective line of attack. There’s some interesting political science research (and I’m drawing a complete blank on the authors) that shows if there’s one thing people hate about politicians it is using their office for personal gain. So, even though Romney will not actually personally benefit from his tax plan, given his extreme wealth it is a very easy narrative to suggest that he will and to inject the idea of naked self-interest into his public policy preferences. That’s certainly the sort of thing we should expect to turn voters away from him.
The Obama campaign seems to have left the NC airwaves to Romney at the moment, so I don’t really know what their advertising themes are at the moment, but I am curious as to whether this is something they are really pushing.