(CNSNews.com) – Conservative leader L. Brent Bozell III, chairman of ForAmerica, said that by passing the Senate-approved deal to avert the so-called fiscal cliff, the Republican Party “loses its soul” and “co-owns” the economic and political ramifications of the agreement.
In a Jan. 1 statement released before the House members voted – the legislation passed early in the morning on Jan. 2 – Bozell said, “If the House passes this bill, the GOP loses its soul and co-owns the resulting fiscal disaster with President Obama.”
“Conservatives should want nothing to do with any Republicans, no matter how 'conservative' they tell us they are, if they support this monstrosity,” said Bozell.
In a statement to CNSNews.com following the House vote, Bozell added that both the Democrats and Republicans “are now the parties of tax and spend.”
“We have spent decades accusing Democrats of being the party of tax and spend while Republicans were the party of fiscal sanity,” Bozell told CNSNews.com. “What we saw last night was both parties are now the parties of tax and spend. And the only difference being Democrats are more honest about it.”
Disclosure: Bozell, in addition to his position at the grass-roots group ForAmerica, is the president of the Media Research Center, the parent organization of CNSNews.com.
Other conservative leaders both in and out of Congress criticized the “fiscal cliff” deal that passed in the House around 2:00AM on Wednesday.
“The one bright spot of this bill is that it makes permanent most of the tax relief Republicans have championed for more than a decade. Unfortunately, it also allows taxes to increase for many families and small businesses,” said Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), chairman of the Republican Study Committee.
“On spending, which is the real problem, this classic Washington deal is worse than doing nothing. We'll never get the budget balanced by delaying the few spending cuts that were agreed to in the summer of 2011,” he said.
Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) -- who along with Jordan was one of 151 House Republicans who voted against the bill – said the deal expands the size of government, and she could not support a plan that increases taxes and fails to address federal spending.
“Rather than a deficit-reduction plan, the Senate sent us a grow-government plan. I cannot support a plan that has billions in tax increases with no meaningful cuts in spending,” said Bachmann.
Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) called the agreement “immoral” and was unable to support a bill that increases federal spending.
“The federal government’s refusal to live within its means is immoral. I cannot in good conscience support burdening our children and grandchildren with another $50 billion of debt,” he said.
The conservative Heritage Action group called the agreement a “kick-the-can approach” that “all but ensures a weaker economy.”
“This kick-the-can approach, necessitated by a president who refuses to stop campaigning and start seriously addressing our nation’s fiscal problems, is not an adequate solution to America’s coming fiscal crisis, which is a result of overspending, not under-taxing,” Heritage Action said in a Monday statement in anticipation of the House and Senate votes. “Allowing a tax increase to hit a certain segment of Americans and small businesses is not a solution; when combined with the coming Obamacare tax increases, it all but ensures a weaker economy.”
Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, criticized the “marriage penalty,” which imposes a tax increase on married couples earning $450,000 or more.
"To make matters worse, President Obama's fiscal cliff deal would impose a marriage penalty on many American families,” said Perkins. “For real, long-term solutions to our nation's fiscal problems, the government should not be working to further dissuade couples from getting married.”
CNSNews.com reported that the legislation passed by the House and Senate on Jan. 1-2 to avert the “fiscal cliff” increases federal spending by $332 billion over the next decade, according to a Congressional Budget Office (CBO) analysis.
Additionally, the agreement raises tax rates for all single individuals earning over $400,000 or more per year, and all married couples earning over $450,000.
Also, the payroll tax rate rises from 4.2 percent to 6.2 percent, which will affect 77.1 percent of all households in the nation. Workers earning anywhere from $50,000 to $200,000 will pay more in taxes, with the average increase amounting to $1,635.
Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Oh.) voted for the bill, while House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Ca.) voted against it.