Norquist Says Super Committee Deadlock Isn't His Fault

He's not on the Super Committee - he's not even a member of Congress - but Grover Norquist wants you to know that it's not his fault if the Super Committee fails.

The deficit-reduction committee is likely to announce Monday that they've failed to produce an economic plan before this week's deadline, largely because the Republican and Democrat members disagree on whether or not to raise revenues as part of the solution.

Norquist, who heads the conservative think-tank Americans for Tax Reform, has, over several years, gotten almost every Republican member of Congress to sign a pledge promising to never vote to raise taxes. Some Democratic members of the Super Committee are now blaming that pledge for the gridlock between the two parties over the tax issue.

"One of the problems has been a pledge that too many Republicans took to a Republican wealthy lobbyist by the name of Grover Norquist," Super Committee member Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash, told CNN. "As long as we have some Republican lawmakers who feel more enthralled with a pledge they took to a Republican lobbyist than they do to a pledge to the country to solve the problems, this is going to be hard to do."

But Norquist said his pledge isn't to blame.

"It's a little bit like saying Kleenex when you mean tissue," he told Fox News. "What they're upset about is that the modern Republican party has become, since Ronald Reagan, the party that will not raise your taxes."

Norquist said he believes the Democrats have made their own economic pledges as well.

"I'm kind of concerned about the secret pledges that Democrats make to the special spending interests - the labor unions and the trial lawyers and the earmark crowd - that they will keep raising taxes to give them money," he said. "Those are pledges, but they're secret, and they don't tell you about them."

Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz, also a member of the Super Committee, told Fox News that it was "silly" to blame Norquist for having anything to do with the committee.

"Grover didn't like what we did," Kyl said of the Republican budget proposals. "He objected to it, he wrote about it and said, this is crazy, we can't do this."

Norquist said the Republicans are maintaining a tough stance on tax issues because the party has learned from past mistakes.

"The modern Democratic party sort of hoped they could go back to what happened in 1982 and 1990, when they tricked Republicans into tax increases, promising them phony spending restraint," he said. "Republicans are not going to walk into that room again, as we're seeing. They're not going to be fooled to raise taxes in return for promises of spending - it doesn't happen."