The Economy: Tax Cuts & Puritans

Virginia's Harry Byrd, 75, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, had been ailing for weeks, and Washingtonians freely surmised that the old budget watchdog had lost not only his bite, but also his bark. Little did they know. Last week Byrd came out roaring like a lion after reading in the Washington Post that "Budget Director Kermit Gordon told a congressional committee yesterday that a balanced budget would lead to increased unemployment, higher taxes and a general economic decline."

If that account was correct, growled Byrd. the President ought to fire Gordon...

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