Sen. Marco Rubio, the Florida Republican who is widely discussed as a vice presidential candidate, said on Sunday that he would not support using new revenue from tax reform to pay down the federal deficit.
As the nation approaches a so-called “fiscal cliff” in coming months, with automatic budget cuts looming and tax cuts expiring, pressure in mounting on Congressional Republicans who have signed Grover Norquist’s pledge not to raise taxes
Speaking on NBC’s Meet the Press, Rubio agreed with host David Gregory that coming efforts to reform the tax code should include closing loopholes and changing tax rates, but he also said that the changes should remain revenue-neutral.
Rubio called the decision between sticking by the tax pledge promoted by Norquist’s organization, Americans for Tax Reform, and generating federal revenue a “false choice.”
“I think the issue here is growth,” he said. “The reason why I oppose tax increases is that they’re destructive to growth.”
Rubio said he would support tax reforms that are revenue-neutral, but would then lead to economic growth, thereby increasing federal revenue.
“I think growth is the only way to solve this problem,” he said. “I think we could do tax reform, flatten the tax rate and close tax loopholes in a way that’s revenue-neutral, and I think tax reform could increase growth.”
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