Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Debt limit and responsibility: why would Obama think this of the Republicans?

Sam Youngman, Obama uses presser to hit GOP on taxes, debt and leadership The Hill 06/29/11, reporting on President Obama's press conference today:

"If everybody else is willing to take on their sacred cows and do tough things in order to achieve the goal of real deficit reduction, then I think it would be hard for the Republicans to stand there and say that, 'The tax break for corporate jets is sufficiently important that we're not willing to come to the table and get a deal done,' or, 'We're so concerned about protecting oil-and-gas subsidies for oil companies that are making money hand over fist, that's the reason we're not going to come to a deal,'" Obama said. "I don't think that's a sustainable position."

Obama chalked up the fervor of Republican opposition to any tax increases as politics as usual.

"I think that what we've seen in negotiations here in Washington is a lot of people say a lot of things to satisfy their base or to get on cable news, but that, hopefully, leaders at a certain point rise to the occasion and they do the right thing for the American people," Obama said. "And that's what I expect to happen this time. Call me naive, but my expectation is that leaders are going to lead."
They've been showing their obstructionist, wrecker party approach for years now in state legislatures and statehouses, notably in California, Wisconsin, Florida and New Jersey. Why would the Democrats find an assumption like the one Obama is making here plausible? It's plausible to see that the Republicans are running a total bluff on refusing to raise the debt ceiling. But expecting Congressional Republicans to show responsible leadership? Or to negotiate with Democrats in good faith? Please.

And let's not forget that "sacred cows" for the Democrats mean Social Security and Medicare.

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