The dilemma of the Republicans: How should they explain to voters why they do not want to create jobs and why the rich should be permitted to pay no more taxes?

It is as so often in the last few years: U.S. President Barack Obama wants to do the right thing, yet the Republicans prevent it. This time Obama demands a tax on the rich — inspired by the multibillionaire Warren Buffett. Because together with others of the super-rich, he recently demanded that he be permitted to pay more taxes. Namely, his tax rate amounts to only 17.4 percent — therefore, not even half as high as that of his employees. The income from such a tax on the rich is urgently needed by the U.S. government to finance the job program called for by the president. Obama wants to spend at least $450 billion for it — and could, as estimated by experts, create over a million jobs.

Since this would be a great success for him, the Republicans will reject his plan as well as a tax on the rich. Their problem, however, is: How should they explain to moderate voters why they do not want to create jobs, and why should the super-rich not pay more taxes — when many of them wish to themselves? Obama’s team recognized this dilemma and will exploit it mercilessly, because above all, it will be a matter of jobs in the upcoming election. If the Republicans want to stand there in 2012 as those who prevent a recovery and furthermore act anti-social, even the faltering Obama can still win.