Charles and David Koch, the billionaire brothers and businessmen who moonlight as massive and powerful donors to conservative (and occasionally liberal) causes, were integral in raising the specter of the budget deficit.
"Their political network aired an unending cascade of campaign advertisements against Democratic politicians, sponsored several national bus tours, and paid organizers in communities across the country to mobilize public demonstrations, all focused on the dangers of increasing the deficit," The Intercept's Lee Fang and Nick Surgey wrote Friday.
Internal memos acquired by The Intercept reveal the Kochs are much less concerned about the deficit monster they helped create now that Republicans control Washington and are pushing a tax reform plan that experts believe will benefit the rich and increase the deficit.
The memo advises the Kochs' operatives on how to get out of conversations about the deficit that Trump's own tax czar has advocated for increasing.
"Avoid getting distracted on revenue neutrality," the memo advises Koch employees. "Economic growth increases revenues."
"Some Republican Senators have expressed concern over supporting comprehensive tax reform that adds to short-term deficits," the memo continues. "Though we fully appreciate those concerns, the long-term economic growth that would result from the first comprehensive tax reform in a generation would help to offset short-term deficits over time. That was the result of the Kennedy and Reagan tax reforms—there’s no reason this time will be any different."
The report notes that the "tax cuts lead to increased revenue" theory was also utilized by President George W. Bush. The aftermath of his policy ended up losing the government an estimated $5 trillion in taxation and laid the foundation of the financial crisis and our current national debt.