Michael Kinsley once wrote that in Washington, a “gaffe” is when a politician tells the truth. This certainly was the case last week as even Democratic lawmakers admitted that the Democratic budget raises taxes on middle-class families.

Over the past few months Democrats have boasted of three special election wins, taking districts previously thought to be safe for Republicans. While many saw these victories as a win for liberals, a vote on the Democratic budget last week revealed a wide ideological divide between the new members, who are closest in touch to their constituents, having faced the voters most recently, and the far left leadership of Speaker Pelosi. All three newly elected members, Congressmen Childers (MS-1), Cazayoux (LA-6), and Foster (IL-14), chose to buck leadership, and vote against their own party’s budget.

Newly-elected Congressman Bill Foster (D-IL) released a statement last week, reacting to the recently passed liberal budget resolution, admitting:

“This bill hurts families all across the 14th District by eliminating the 10-percent bracket for lower-income taxpayers, reinstating the marriage penalty and increasing taxes on small businesses and investments.

I campaigned on a platform of middle class tax relief, and I was elected to Washington to bring about change. When asked to choose between my party and the people I represent, I will choose the families of the 14th District every single time.”

This straight talk is striking given Speaker Pelosi’s statement that very same day stating,

“The federal budget is more than just the government’s balance sheet. It is a statement of our values and priorities as a nation.”

The new Congressman shows what it’s like to represent middle-American values. Middle-American values include keeping spending under control and keeping taxes from rising, a fact Congressman Foster refreshingly seems to understand full well. While this bloated budget may represent Speaker Pelosi’s “values and priorities,” they certainly do not represent the average American’s.

As Heritage senior policy analyst Brian Riedl recently noted, the budget passed by 214 Democrats last week:

  • Assumes tax increases topping $3 trillion over the next decade, or $3,135 per household annually
  • Includes 64 reserve funds that could be used to raise taxes by hundreds of billions more
  • Increases discretionary spending by 8 percent for the second consecutive year and does not terminate a single wasteful program
  • Completely ignores the impending explosion of Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid costs
  • Creates rules that bias the budget toward tax increases
  • Assumes that Congress will violate its own PAYGO rules.

At a time of rising gas prices and economic instability, increasing the financial burden on hardworking middle-class Americans is the last thing Congress should be voting for.