Former President George H.W. Bush, who famously said "Read my lips: no new taxes" at the 1988 Republican National Convention before going on to raise taxes during his presidency, does not think highly of pledges that keep lawmakers from hiking rates.
In a forthcoming interview with Parade Magazine, the elder Bush knocks Americans for Tax Reform President Grover Norquist, whose organization has convinced hundreds of policymakers and candidates to sign a pledge promising never to raise rates.
From the magazine:
During your presidency you gave in on your "no new taxes" pledge. You've been vindicated in many respects for that decision. I wonder how you view the "no new tax" pledge from Grover Norquist that seems to be requisite for GOP political candidates.
GB: The rigidity of those pledges is something I don't like. The circumstances change, and you can't be wedded to some formula by Grover Norquist. It's—who the hell is Grover Norquist, anyway?
For Americans for Tax Reform, the feelings appear mutual. The group is currently using the one-term president's image on its Facebook page to remind Republicans what happened to "the last Republican to compromise on tax increases."
"Any lawmaker willing to consider such a deal is poised to become another fool of history," the text reads below the photo.