McCain Open To Tax Hikes On Rich?

From Bloomberg's Al Hunt:

"In an interview, Carly Fiorina, a top adviser, explains that any tax increases on ‘middle- and working-class' Americans are off limits. She says if a bipartisan coalition is ‘creative enough' to fashion tax increases on wealthier Americans, that may prove palatable. That's encouraging, until you consider that McCain doesn't always listen to his economic advisers. A few months ago, his top advisers counseled him that any reduction in the gasoline tax was bad energy and economic policy. A short while later, he advocated suspending the 18-cent-a-gallon tax for the summer.”

Don't read this as Fiorina suggesting that McCain wants to raise taxes on the rich. Read this as Fiorina reiterating what has been a longstanding McCain and often overlooked McCain promise: on tax reform and entitlements, he wants a bipartisan commission to propose a menu of solutions. A President McCain will choose among menu items that are palatable to Democrats. On Social Security, payroll tax increases will be on the table, for example. McCain's language on taxes has been necessarily ellipitcal; he can't 100% rule out raising taxes on the rich because he knows that his cherished entitlement reforms, in particular, may come down to his support for one.