Jeff Jacoby

Liberals and Democrats have been melting down, blowing up, and freaking out over President Obama's agreement with Republican leaders to extend Bush-era tax rates for another two years. "An absolute disaster," fumes Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders in an interview on MSNBC. "Anger of House Dems boils over," Politico reports. "An Odious Tax Deal," editorializes The New York Times. "Moral corruptness," seethes Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana.

"No amount of lipstick," roars a headline at Democratic Underground, "can make this pig of a deal acceptable."

Why is the left so furious?

I realize, of course, that liberals were against the Bush tax cuts from the start. I know that Obama vowed time and again to let those tax cuts expire for households earning more than $250,000 a year. He made that pledge as a candidate for president, and he was still making it on the campaign trail this fall. "We are ready . . . to give tax cuts to every American making $250,000 or less," the president said in Cleveland on Sept. 8. "For any income over this amount, the tax rates would just go back to what they were under President Clinton."

But Obama swore to end plenty of other Bush policies that nevertheless remain intact. Why aren't Democrats in a blind rage over the tens of thousands of US troops still deployed in Iraq? Or his extension of the Patriot Act? Or the ongoing rendition of terror suspects to third countries for interrogation?


Jeff Jacoby

Jeff Jacoby is an Op-Ed writer for the Boston Globe, a radio political commentator, and a contributing columnist for Townhall.com.