Dems Go After Hatch For Saying Poor Need To Do More To Shrink The Debt

July 7, 2011 1:20 p.m.

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is going after Sen. Orrin Hatch for saying that the poor need to “share some of the responsibility” for shrinking the debt.

“The top 10 percent are paying 70 percent of all income taxes. The top 50 percent pay something like 98 percent of all income taxes. Fifty-one percent don’t pay anything,” Hatch said.

“Democrats say they [the 51 percent] pay payroll taxes. Well, everybody does that because that’s Social Security. They pay about one-third of what they’re going to take out over the years in Social Security,” Hatch said. “Obamacare — a family of four earning over $80,000 a year — gets subsidies. Think about that. That’s what we call the poor?”“Republican priorities are completely out of whack and Orrin Hatch’s comments prove that point,” DSCC’s Shripal Shah told TPM.

“It’s bad enough that Republicans are doing everything they can to protect tax breaks for millionaires and special interests, but the fact that the Republican idea of shared sacrifice means going after the those who are struggling the most is completely reprehensible,” Shah said.

On Thursday, Hatch voted against a motion to begin debate on a measure that would have declared the rich should share the pain of debt reduction, the Huffington Post reports.

He doubled down on his rhetoric on the floor of the Senate on Thursday afternoon.

“All I can say is that we have got to get with it around here and we’ve got to start working together as Democrats and Republicans in the best interests of the American people and that is reforming this awful tax code — getting taxes down for everybody to have some skin in the game except the really poor and help our country to pull out of the mess that we’re in,” Hatch said.

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