Brendan Doherty won’t sign Grover Norquist’s anti-tax pledge

Brendan Doherty isn’t interested in signing conservative lobbyist Grover Norquist’s famous anti-tax pledge, which has long been a rite of passage for most major Republican politicians.

“Brendan has not signed the ATR pledge and has no plans to sign it,” Doherty spokesman Robert Coupe told, using the acronym for Norquist’s group, Americans for Tax Reform.

Norquist – who once said he wants to “shrink [government] down to the size where we can drown it in a bathtub” – created the Taxpayer Protection Pledge in 1986 with the backing of President Reagan. “Signing it has become de riguer for GOP candidates running for federal or statewide offices,” The Hill later wrote.

Doherty now joins a growing group of Republicans who say they don’t want to be tied down by a pledge to never vote for an increase in federal revenue. At least a third of the GOP’s top candidates this year aren’t planning to sign the pledge, The Washington Post reported last week.

“The premise behind this and similar pledges that seek to tie the hands of candidates and elected officials tends to result in greater division and increased gridlock in Congress, at a time when we need to seek consensus and common-sense solutions,” Coupe said.

“Brendan has called repeatedly for comprehensive tax reform to simplify the tax code, close loopholes and create a tax plan that treats middle class families fairly and allows small businesses to compete and create jobs,” he continued. “That is Brendan’s commitment to the citizens of Rhode Island and his pledge is to provide the real leadership that is needed in Congress right now.”

(photo: Wikipedia)

8 thoughts on “Brendan Doherty won’t sign Grover Norquist’s anti-tax pledge

    • How does federal tax policy make people leave RI? Where would they go? To a neighboring state with the same federal tax policy?

      • Most Rhode Island elected officals have never seen a tax they didn’t like. Doherty was a government worker and is a retiree. He never worked as an adult in the private sector, he is not a Republican but a RINO. Republican In Name Only. He maybe a little more ethical than Cicciline and a little bit brighter the Gemma but he is still inept.

  1. The tax pledge is way too strict. So if you close a loophole for hamsters and the government makes $5, you violate the pledge? I’m all for lower taxes, but these special
    Interest pledges are ridiculous

  2. This is not as difficult as our so called “journalists” and their political allies would make it. Basically, does one believe the USA’s fiscal ills are primarily the function of too little revenue(taxes) or too much spending? Trying to buy votes for the last four generations, rather than sticking to the basic functions of the Federal system, explains a lot of why we’re in the financial mess. One should ask candidates about their ideas regarding the very premises of what the Federal government does… and, of course, how it does it. There is a basic difference between the standard “Social”(ist) Democrat and most Republicans. If you believe in the former, you pretty much want this country to look like Europe. For those of us not enamored with socialism, we look to those who would emphasize liberty and individual responsibility, before looking to extract more to prop up dubious federal policies. Some of those dubious federal policies include crony capitalism(both spending and taxes). It’s one thing to correct that, and, quite another to just want to keep spending and taxing in a host of areas that grossly distort ordinary behavior and expand dependency on career politicians. I won’t hold my breath waiting for what passes as journalism and political culture in Rhode Island(Rogues Island) to address substantive issues.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s