There’s always been a strain of Fiscal Conservatism in the Republican Party. Going back to the 1930s with their opposition to the New Deal and even before that. There’s always been that Conservative Faction in the GOP. That says we, meaning the Federal Government. Are not going to spend more then the Federal Government takes in. And that the Federal Government is not going to do no more then it should. Basically what’s left in it to do, under the 11th Amendment of the US Constitution. And that any program thats not part of this Amendment, is Unconstitutional. And all powers that don’t fall under the Federal Government. Would be left with the States and Private Sector. This pretty much defined the Republican Party in the 20th Century and still does. The need for Fiscal Conservatism and Economic Liberty for the people.
This Fiscal Conservatism Movement in the Republican Party. And the need for Economic Liberty, was really put on the map. By Bob Taft who was a strong vocal Conservative Republican in Congress. In the 1930s, 40s and 50s, who served as Republican Leader during this time period. Who also ran for President and served both as Senate Minority Leader and Senate Leader. President Dwight Eisenhower pick up the Fiscal Conservatism Movement in the 1950s. Was a strong Fiscal Conservative all across the board. Except on taxes, where he left the high Tax Rates in place at that point. Sen. Barry Goldwater the 1964 Republican Nominee for President. Was the Leader of this Movement in the 1960s and 70s, along with Gerry Ford. Who served as House Republican Leader, Vice President and President.
In the late 1970s Fiscal Conservatism went not only for being about Fiscal Restraint. For the Federal Government but low Tax Rates and Tax Cuts. This became known as Supply Side Economics that Ron Reagan ran on to become President. And was his Fiscal Policy as President, except it became more about Tax Cuts. Then Fiscal Restraint and then moving on to the 1990s with the Gingrich Revolution in Congress. Speaker Newt Gingrich moved the GOP back to being about Fiscal Restraint but also for the need. For low Tax Rates and this lasted until George W. Bush became President in 2001. When Fiscal Restraint went out the door, like a shoplifter making a getaway. And the GOP of this era was mostly just about Tax Cuts on Economic Policy.
In the early to mid 1990s, Grover Norquist came on the scene. In Washington, he leads the group Americans for Tax Reform. And they advocate for low Tax Rates, Tax Reform and are completely anti Tax Hikes. To the point that they can scare the hell out of any Republican Member of Congress. That even considers supporting Tax Hikes in any form, can lose what they probably care most about. Their seat in Congress, this goes for both the House and Senate. With the No Tax Pledge that ATR pushes constantly. You better sign it or risk losing your job is your a Republican. You can also lose your job if you violate your pledge. So twenty years ago the GOP would be open to Tax Hikes. To pay down the debt and deficit, if it came with matching Budget Cuts. Twenty years later, those days are gone.