“No more tax revenue! None. NONE.”
That was not the cry of a dyed-in-the-wool conservative politician. Rather it was Jim Cramer, CNBC’s own host of “Mad Money,” speaking to the upcoming fight in Washington over the debt ceiling.
Cramer was talking about the issue with Joe Kernen on “Squawk Box” January 4, shortly after the December jobs report showed 155,000 jobs added and a 7.8 percent unemployment rate.
Kernen lamented that even after the fiscal cliff deal, they couldn’t take a break from that discussion because of upcoming battles over the debt ceiling and automatic spending cuts. “We’re back in angst hell again worrying about what’s finally gonna happen and it’s not going to be pretty, Jim,” Kernen said.
“No it’s not. Look, I want to overlook it. I want to put it in a box. I want to be able to say that is not what you should focus on because we’ve got earnings next week, but I keep coming back to the CEOs see what we see, Joe,” Cramer replied.
Cramer said that all the debt wrangling in Washington is “hard to get it off people’s minds.”
When Kernen asked Cramer specifically, “Do you think we need to get a handle on entitlements immediately? Should that be what we do with the debt ceiling? Or is it important to -- to raise another $600 billion in tax revenue immediately?”
Cramer adamantly opposed more tax hikes even after Kernen pointed out that “we just heard Jared [formerly Obama’s chief economic adviser] say he’s going to insist on that.”
“NONE,” Cramer insisted. Instead he said, “There should be no more tax increases. We should be coming up with a new way to be able to, be creative ways to keep costs down on Medicare. Maybe make part B more expensive for people, but no, no Joe, no more taxes.”
Cramer continued his rant saying, “I mean ‘read my lips’ no more taxes and don’t go back on it because everyone’s going to get them and everyone who’s sat down with their accountant in the last 48 hours in dazzled. Dazzled about what’s gonna happen. And I’m not just talking about the wealthy people because we’re starting to talk about healthcare, small businesses what they’re thinking about at the end of 2013. So no, it’s Medicare, Medicare and then Medicare and it’s all that matters.”