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Fri Jan 13, 2012, 11:55 AM

Jonathan Chait: ‘Quiet Rooms’ and Republican Class War


The GOP Establishment’s deepest and most recurrent fear is an open debate over economic class. This is not a debate they feel they can win even among Republican voters, a majority of whom actually favor higher taxes on the rich. Romney’s assertion yesterday that economic inequality should not be discussed, or should only be mentioned in “quiet rooms,” is a too-frank expression of the GOP elite’s actual belief that the issue must be kept out of political debate.

President Bush’s former press secretary Ari Fleischer, who saw class warfare under every rock, was asked at a 2001 press conference if it inherently constituted class warfare to question any aspect of the distribution of Bush’s tax cuts:


MR. FLEISCHER: I think if someone were to make a rather economic, esoteric, scholarly argument like you just did, that wouldn't be class warfare.

“Esoteric, scholarly” captures the same idea Romney is attempting to invoke with “quiet rooms.” Republicans believe any discussion of the disparate class impact of regressive policies constitutes an impermissible attack on the rich. If the matter is to be discussed at all, it must be under conditions that insulate it completely from the political debate, so as to avoid waking up the populist demons.


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Reply Jonathan Chait: ‘Quiet Rooms’ and Republican Class War (Original post)
highplainsdem Jan 2012 OP
treestar Jan 2012 #1

Response to highplainsdem (Original post)

Fri Jan 13, 2012, 11:56 AM

1. The Republicans and their "class warfare."

Notice how they manage to make it look bad in itself. Well of course. It's inconvenient for the rich.

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