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Sen. Ron Johnson: No New Tax Cuts Until Deficit in Order -- A payroll tax cut has emerged this week as a possible way for Washington to seek to spur hiring, as concerns about the sluggish economy are impacting deficit reduction talks between the White House and congressional leaders.

But even some staunch supporters of lower taxes say this is a dangerous idea, since it would take even more revenue away from the federal government at a time of spiraling deficits and debt.

On ABC’s Top Line Thursday, Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis. -- who spent more than three decades in manufacturing before being elected to Congress last year with Tea Party support -- said it would be a mistake to lower the payroll tax paid by businesses.

“I would love to be talking tax decreases -- I mean I really would -- but right now we've got to focus on providing the structural reform for entitlement programs and just [spending] caps, to discipline Washington once and for all,” Johnson told ABC News.

Asked whether a payroll tax cut would make the deficit worse, Johnston said,: “Unfortunately, I think it would.”

“Let's face it: part of the problem is the entitlement programs that are simply unsustainable. So we've got to provide structural reform,” Johnson continued. “As unfortunate as it is that we can't be talking about tax decreases to spur the economy, the fact of the matter is they use Keynesian economics. They indebted us to another $2.4 trillion these past three years. Total employment's down since when that program started. It hasn't worked. It just hasn't worked. We've dug ourselves such a deep hole.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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