July 12th, 2011


Eugene Robinson has a posse

"Washington has many lazy habits, and one of the worst is a reflexive tendency to see equivalence where none exists. Hence the nonsense, being peddled by politicians and commentators who should know better, that 'both sides' are equally at fault in the deadlocked talks over the debt ceiling. This is patently false. The truth is that Democrats have made clear they are open to a compromise deal on budget cuts and revenue increases. Republicans have made clear they are not."


Republican anger

"Republicans are furious because President Obama’s gambit — to make himself look like the 'adult in the room' by offering Republicans a disastrous but sweeping debt reduction deal that would combine tax increases with cuts to the social safety net — appears to be working. It’s working in the sense that it has revealed for all to see that Republicans aren’t really interested in cutting the debt.

"What Republicans are really interested in doing is cutting the welfare state. That's why they're opposed to any increase in taxes, even though the biggest single driver of the deficit is the Bush tax cuts, which Republicans overwhelmingly supported. Despite Krauthammer's claim that Obama’s interest in the deficit is 'sudden,' the truth is that it's also 'sudden' for Republicans — it wasn't an issue for them until Obama was elected president. Before then, Republicans were perfectly willing to increase the debt through tax cuts, war with Iraq, and Medicare Part D. Moreover, Republicans had no issue with raising the debt ceiling without demanding spending cuts when Bush was president. It’s only now that Obama is in the White House that they're insisting that a debt ceiling hike must be accompanied by major concessions from Dems."