It was not that long ago that complying with the so-called "No-Tax Pledge" to Grover Norquist and Americans for Tax Reform was all but essential for any Republican who ran for office. In fact, last year, during the GOP presidential primaries all of the candidates refused to commit to even one dollar in tax hikes for ten dollars in spending cuts.
Now, at least three Republicans are willing to break the pledge and Sen. Lindsey Graham is one of them. Sen. Saxby Chambliss of Georgia and Rep. Steve King of New York are the other two.
Apearing on ABC's "This Week" on Sunday morning, Graham said it's time to re-evluate the pledge to avoid sequestration and "the fiscal cliff." The Senator said he is not favor of raising tax rates, but in closing loopholes for the wealthy.
"When you're $16 trillion in debt, the only pledge we should be making to each other is to avoid becoming Greece, and Republicans -- Republicans should put revenue on the table," Graham said. "We're this far in debt. We don't generate enough revenue. Capping deductions will help generate revenue. Raising tax rates will hurt job creation.
"So I agree with Grover, we shouldn't raise rates. But, I think Grover is wrong when it comes to [saying] we can't cap deductions and buy down debt," Graham continued. "I want to buy down debt and cut rates to create jobs, but I will violate the pledge, long story short, for the good of the country, only if Democrats will do entitlement reform."
Graham said he would like to see the retirement age gradually raised and for means testing for Social Security benefits.
During his appearance, Graham also discussed the latest on the Benghazi investigation. He rejected Ambassador Susan Rice's claim that she was given the best intelligence available when she made her initial comments on the attack. Graham's full remarks can be viewed HERE.
While some might suggest that Graham's willingness to break the pledge is a response to the results of the election earlier this month or is being done to help his own re-election prospects in 2014, it's not new. While appearing at a press conference in Columbia to discuss sequestration in August, Graham talked about means testing and raising the retirement age.
So far, none of the other Republicans in South Carolina's Congressional delegation have expressed a willingness to break the "No-Tax Pledge."