Van Jones: Budget Talks Are Stuck Because ‘A Small Number Of Extremists Hijacked The Base’

As the budget talks continue in Congress, Democrats and Republicans resume negotiations on whether increasing taxes or cutting spending (or what combination of both) would work best. But progress is slow, and on The Last Word yesterday, Van Jones blamed “a very small number of extremists” on the right who refuse to raise taxes, even when Ronald Reagan would.

Jones visited Thomas Roberts (sitting in for Lawrence O’Donnell) to weigh in on the debt ceiling talks, and argued that raising taxes was the only way to ensure that the budget would be reasonably balanced. He noted that even the architect of Reaganomics suggested raising taxes, but “Washington, D.C. is so far off the rails” that only electing new leaders would fix the problem. “You talk to ordinary people, they’re not talking about the debt ceiling– they’re talking about these veterans coming home to no jobs, no hope,” Jones argued.

Jones and Roberts also discussed a comment Rep. Michele Bachmann made about a worse economy potentially being better for Republicans, which Jones found “awful.” Thomas noted that it was likely that “the worse the economy is under President Obama, the better the chances a Republican will beat him,” but that didn’t justify the comment to Jones. “The only people who should be qualified to serve in our country at any level– at the dog catcher level– should say they’ve put the welfare of ordinary Americans before any political ambitions,” he concluded.

The segment via MSNBC below:

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