How future presidential candidates voted on the fiscal cliff deal

Iowa GOP Chair A.J. Spiker spoke for many conservative Republicans yesterday when he urged members of Congress to vote against the “ill-advised” deal to avoid tax increases. “The so called “Fiscal Cliff Deal” will only hurt middle class families, continue out of control government spending and fails to address the $16.5 Trillion Federal deficit [sic],” Spiker said in a statement.

Republicans Tom Latham (IA-04, IA-03 in the new Congress) and Steve King (IA-05, IA-04 in the new Congress) voted against this bill. So did likely 2016 presidential candidates Marco Rubio and Rand Paul in the U.S. Senate. However, in a surprising move to me, House Budget Committee Chair Paul Ryan voted for the deal. I figured Ryan would end up with House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and most other House Republicans, who objected to the lack of spending cuts. Ryan later told reporters, “I am not afraid of anything, I think it needed to pass. […] I wanted to stop a big tax increase.”

Any comments on the long-term political implications of yesterday’s votes are welcome in this thread. Rubio has already warned that the deal will hurt small businesses and future economic growth. He is wrong about the impact on small businesses, but economic growth probably will be weak during the next few years, which will vindicate his views in the eyes of conservatives.

UPDATE: A few more House Republicans who voted no may run for president in 2016 or 2020: Mike Pence, just elected governor of Indiana; Tim Scott, just appointed U.S. senator to replace Jim DeMint of South Carolina; Jeff Flake, just elected U.S. senator from Arizona.

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  • Flake, Pence, etc.

    Flake and Pence would be interesting candidates for people like us who follow this closely, but they are too dry as dust and wonky to make it through our American Idol style of picking a President.

    Pence actually has the social conservative routine down, but is there a large enough constituency for it?  I doubt it.  

    I hope the Florida and South Carolina Democratic parties don’t roll over and play dead for Rubio and Scott.  I know Lindsey Graham gives Dems a better chance of winning a seat (or making one competitive), but everyone should run a credible candidate everywhere if we can.  

    • I think the SC Dems

      will try to nominate a serious candidate for Senate after what just happened in Indiana.

      Agree with you that Pence and Flake don’t seem like strong presidential candidates.