Who knows? That will be decided by the President and Congress who implement the provisions of the Amendment. It all depends on who they are. That will be determined by the election of 2016. Republicans will fight tax increases. Democrats will fight spending cuts. Depending on the balance of power in Washington, you will wind up with all spending cuts, all taxes, or a combination of the two.
Last year the Eagle Forum put out a piece attacking us because I acknowledged this political reality publicly, in a meeting with the Utah Legislature’s Conservative Caucus. They misquote me, claiming I predict tax increases. I just acknowledged the possibility. Even that is enough to raise concerns on the hard anti-tax right.
I don’t want any tax increases. As far as I’m concerned the federal government doesn’t have a revenue problem, it’s got a spending problem. One of the key decisions the delegates to the Amendment Convention will make is how much leeway to give Congress on the question of tax increases. Some say there should be a flat prohibition, and without one the Amendment couldn’t be ratified. Others think such a prohibition would prevent ratification. The delegates will decide. They’ll figure out what will work, and what won’t, what can be ratified, and what can’t.
We don’t know what they’ll decide. They will be serious people. Every legislature will want to send its best. We’ll all watch them deliberate, examine their proposal closely, and decide if we can support it. That’s the system the Framers set up. Let’s see if it works. What are we afraid of?