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Friday, October 21, 2016

Republicans didn’t pay attention to the polls that showed the president headed to an electoral college landslide in November, and they’re probably not checking them too often now. If they were, we would be much closer to a deal to avert the austerity-ensuring formula of expiring tax cuts and automatic spending cuts.

Instead, Republicans in the House are only vaguely offering to eliminate deductions, which could hit the middle class. In exchange they want big cuts in domestic spending — Medicare, Medicaid, education, etc. — that they’re unwilling to name. Instead they’re demanding that the president name his cuts specifically.

The one “cut” that has become public is the Republican demand that the Medicare eligibility age be raised to 67, something the president reportedly agreed to during the 2011 debt ceiling “grand bargain” talks. Progressives have pushed back on this idea and it is now reportedly off the table, which is a perfect example of why both sides don’t want to name specific cuts.

But the president has been specific on taxes — he wants all the Bush tax cuts on incomes over $250,000 to end, along with the breaks on investment income that primarily benefit the rich. If the GOP doesn’t give in, he’ll get what he wants anyway on January 1, 2013. Plus the GOP will be blamed for tax increases on the middle class.

And as of now, that’s what seems most likely to happen. Here’s why.

Photo credit: AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite

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Copyright 2012 The National Memo
  • nobsartist

    Boner needs another stage prop that states

    “the republiCONs are the problem”.

    These delusional idiots still do not understand that their party lost.

    It is time to counter attack by passing new federal laws that dictate how districts are drawn up and how elections are conducted. These two issues should have been addressed before the purported “AFC” bill was passed. Another way to attack the idiots would be to allow medicare for all in all states governed by a republiCON governor. These obstructionists are already making “affordable care” impossible so its time to launch a counter attack against the for profit health care cabal that financially supports these crooks by allowing medicare for all now.

    As part of a new spending bill the FEDS should start a massive construction project that involves taking all municipally built hospitals that were sold to “for profit” health care companies back and creating a network of medicare owned health care facilities.

    Its time for democrats to get off of their butts and start doing something instead of constantly getting chumped by the republiCON traitors.

  • howa4x

    The republicans in the house actually lost, and there were 1 million more votes cast against them than for them, but gerrymandering saved their sorry collective asses. If they stick to tax cuts for the rich and hold the middle class hostage, the party will take a bigger beating on the senate side, as well as loose some boarder seats on the house side. The public is sick of seeing Grover Norquist ( who wasn’t elected by anyone)lead the reresentitives like a bull with a ring in it’s nose. He has them is a frozen state as does the tealiban, and they look like a deer caught in the headlights. Boehner’s excuses seem more and more lame, since Obama has put forth 1 trillion in cuts and the republicans have put forth vague sentiments. They will push this country over the imaginary cliff that they all created and pay the price for a long time. Don’t think the seniors will forget that the republicans want them to bear the burden of sacrifice while saving their wealthy contributers. Maybe they will now wake up and abandon the party that targets them.

  • Cyndieaa

    All of those disgusting repugs ought to just stay in Washington and have Christmas with Grover. Maybe they can all wave their guns around, too. Very festive.

    • sigrid28

      In the red-neck rural farm district where I lived for a decade, throughout the Christmas and the New Year’s holidays, gun-loving locals hung the carcasses of their trophy deer, tied by the front legs, strung up on the low-hanging branches of trees near their run-down houses. To me, a city girl with a child, surrounded by crude xenophobes, it raised the grim image of Billie Holiday’s “Strange Fruit,” her song about lynching in the South. On New Year’s Eve, the neighbor across the street–who happened to be on the illustrious Republican dominated town council (an orgy of cronyism and nepotism)–tied a party hat to his kill and stuck a festive noisemaker in its mouth. My little boy asked if it was a new kind of Christmas decoration.

      • idamag

        Sig, what an ugly community.

      • sig, thank God you are outtathere

        • sigrid28

          Me too. They turned the orchard into a parking lot for their pick-up trucks, so I feel sorry for the trees and the animals that depended on them.

          • BacchusTaliesin

            sigrid28, I never go back to the rural community I grew up in. I have good memories but it is a totally different mindset than what I care to be around. There is no reasoning.

          • sigrid28

            I understand, but I’m sure there are some things you miss very much. As an author/educator who has appreciation for your writing on this comment thread, I would suggest (without insisting) that you write down some of the pleasant memories important to you, so you have the record. A project like this even has a scrap-booking aspect: you can include photos and maps, whatever, to supplement your personal narrative.

          • BacchusTaliesin

            sigrid28: Yes, you are right about having a record. Fortunately my mother was one who filled scrapbooks from church bible school, all the way through grade & high school & the books are full of newspaper clippings & photos. So all that along with my memory bank, I can close my eyes & remember all those pleasant experiences growing up. When I visit my parents grave which is outside of the little town in the country, I walk around & see people I delivered papers to as a kid, tell my stories to who is with me about those experiences which sometimes involved some of those people who have now passed on. Yes; at that time I sort of wish I could go back as that was a time when I really enjoyed life at its best, felt totally safe & was ready for the world ahead of me.

            Now, a lot of that little town is gone, don’t know most of the people who have moved in, bought properties on the cheap, not the best of the citizens around you, a lot of those left are those who either, did not wish to go elsewhere or could not pick up & leave. A lot of my friends lived on farms but most were unable to afford inheriting their dad’s farm or did not want to continue the family tradition.

            So, I have my scrapbooks & memories which has all of those pleasant memories that are important to me.

            “I can’t go back to yesterday – because I was a different person then. ” – Lewis Carroll

      • as a registered democrat I still have to ask… what is wrong with people curing deer meat during hunting season? Hanging a deer carcass out to cure has absolutely nothing to do with politics. I vote to the left every election and on years that I’m lucky enough to harvest a deer, I hang it from a tree.

        • BacchusTaliesin

          Josh, growing up in a rural community like what sigrid28 did, I understand what you are saying & I agree as I was taught how to hunt, rabbits, squirrels. Couldn’t do the deer thing, probably Bambi but we were taught how to handle guns, never a loaded gun in the house, they were cleaned & they were put away in a safe place & from others.

          So, you are right with what you say & I understand where sigrid is coming from as well. This debate is a difficult one. the rural & the city, two totally different purposes & reasoning & then you have the politicians.

          Also, we are off-track as this is a different subject than the fiscal cliff coming.

          • sigrid28

            Republicans and guns are part and parcel of the ethos that will cause the GOP to push the country over the Fiscal Cliff. In the rural areas where low-information Republicans identify as gun owners, their votes propel into office a party that could not survive but for them–yet many of these voters are themselves victims of GOP policies that would destroy the very safety net on which many of them depend. No wonder they are fearful and cling to their guns.

            In Washington, Republicans are devoted to gun ownership because of the support of the NRA, a lobbying group that–like Grover Norquist–threatens to fund far-right challengers to unseat any senator or representative who votes for greater gun control, at any level of government. You have only to read the Republican platform and recall the dog-whistle politics of this fall’s election, to understand how great a role fear and fear mongering plays in the GOP. House Republicans are more AFRAID of Grover Norquist than they are of going over the Fiscal Cliff.

          • BacchusTaliesin

            sigrid28, can’t disagree with what you are saying and as for Grover Norquist, have never understood where his power comes from or how he could have influence he has had with so many. However, it appears that that power has dissipated somewhat & hopefully he will go away as well.

            I do understand where you are coming from and the Republicans & the NRA held a lock on this country for too long regarding gun control. Also, the republicans are so far to the right, there is no rationality in that party anymore so you are right in the fact they might very well take us over the fiscal cliff. Not a good thing at all, you just don’t do such drastic action all at once & the damage the economy will take from it will hurt a lot of people.

          • sigrid28

            I hope you are right about Grover Norquist, and that we are both wrong about the very real likelihood of going over the Fiscal Cliff. It is a breath of fresh air to participate in actual discourse on the National Memo comment thread.

          • BacchusTaliesin

            I hope I am right too sigrid & I too enjoy a discussion in a pleasant way & one in which you can learn from others. This is my first time on this one & those such as yourself have made it a very pleasant welcome.

        • sigrid28

          Josh, This is a just question, which I hasten to answer. I’m sure the way you handle the deer you harvest does not include a party hat and noisemaker on New Year’s Eve. The way you describe your enthusiasm for hunting indicates a respect for the deer you hang to cure: I bet it is not put on crude display in the front yard as a hunting trophy as deer were routinely in the rural community where we once lived and never fit in.

          Your question makes me see that I may have over-identified with the deer, that seemed, to me, to have been victimized in a place that did it’s best to victimize outsiders of every kind. Before these locals drove us out of the town, we had an orchard of heritage apples of many varieties, where a doe brought her fauns each year. One year, one of her newborns was lame. I was very worried, and kept watching for the little family anxiously all summer. The faun never lost its limp, but it kept up with its twin: the doe led them about as though they were equal. In the fall, when the trees were so heavy with fruit we had to put crutches beneath the branches to keep them from breaking before the clusters of apples could ripen–and the grass was that dignified olive green you seen in medieval wall hangings–the orchard looked for all the world like a life-size tapestry that these deer had magically brought to life as they gracefully walked about in it.

          So thanks for a challenge that reminded me of the beauties of this time in our lives and of our respect for wildlife, which seems to be a value you and I share.

  • What does it take to get people to finally get it, you can’t lower, OR stop from growing, a credit card bill by spending less. IT DOESN’T WORK.
    They “create jobs”.
    Build a factory, between having to decide which monthly bills to pay this month, and basic things like food, who can actually afford anything else. What happens? the factory closes, everyone that WAS working there is unemployed, again, the owners write it off their taxes.
    Almost 1/3 of the National Deficit is interest. This country owes over $4 trillion to other countries, try and pay them back with less money.
    Good luck.
    The National Debt isn’t a debit card,
    The Republicans can claim anything they want, they’re lying, anything they can to try to get back in control of this country.
    It didn’t work in 2012, it won’t work in 2014, and it won’t work in 2016.

  • There won’t be any “sudden” impact of over $500B in tax increases and spending cuts as they will be phased in and the tax income increases won’t hit until 2014 for most of the non rich. The “cliff” is a convenient term to spread alarm. I think it’s more like a curb with an access ramp.

  • William Deutschlander

    The American U S A Democracy is in dire need of a few Statesmen who give a damn about the U S A and the citizens!

  • onedonewong

    to date barak’s plan is to increase taxes and for every $20 in increased taxes he’s offering $1 in spending cuts. Once again the amateur in the WH has a hard time with math.

    • Replying to onedonewong –

      I have no idea where you get these numbers, but I AM IN FAVOR OF THE RATIO YOU MENTIONED!!!!

      Unfortunately, the numbers you quote are just so much hog wash. the mix was more like $2 of reduced spending for each $1 of tax increases.

      • karinursula

        Yes Jim that is exactly what the President said. I wish some people like onedonewong learn how to read.

        • Replying to karinursula –

          Thank you for your comments.

      • onedonewong

        Must not have read a paper in the past 30 days

      • Jim I will tell you where “onedumbfuck” gets his numbers, he reaches between his leg and pulls them out of his butt.

        Here are 2 of his finest “facts” – 6 million illegal aliens won the election for President Obama and Democrats finance 1 million abortions every year.

        What can you expect from someone who does seem to walk in reality very often.
        As for the ratio remember during the Republican primary all the candidates turned dwon $1 in tax increase for every $10 in spending cuts. You can tell who “one” is, he is the guy with the tin foil on his head.

  • Damn the gop! They are the biggest horses asses of all time. And a horses ass is where their collective brain resides.

  • WHO the GOP serves? The very, very wealthy who know that each financial crisis brings ever growing hordes of eager, cheaper workers. Their wealth has made them arrogant and arrogance eventually. sinks everyone.

  • Gofwyotech

    Fiscal technocrats of the Democrats and RepubliCONS (as nobsartist coined it), should try applying the “method of least-squares” in coming out with a regression line that best fits the “ideal line”, not necessarily the “perfect line” in solving the feared fiscal cliff. This method reduces the deviations (of variables) from the perfect line into an ideal situation that best solves the fiscal cliff. These technocrats should identify and determine the “least-square” line by plotting all the independent and dependent variables on the Y-X axis then decide, once and for all, that the “line” indeed solves the problem.

  • Gofwyotech

    You may include my postname as Gofwyotech in my comments re “fiscal technocrats……”

  • Gofwyotech

    I would willingly post the formula or procedure in using the “method of least-squares” if these technocrats are interested.

  • i am sorry, but i don’t get the part in this article where it says, “if the gop doesn’t give in, he’ll get what he wants anyway on january 1, 2013” what exactly does that mean if anyone can explain it to me

    • sigrid28

      President Obama will get a tax increase on the top 2%, or those making $250,000, if ALL of the Bush tax cuts expire as they are scheduled to do on December 31, 2012. What the president and Democrats are trying to avoid is taxes increasing for the other 98% as well.

      What President Obama and his administration has proposed is legislation that originated in the Senate and has yet to pass in the House. It would prevent taxes from going up for the 98%. Then, at a later time–if at all–the House could decide what to do about taxes on the top 2%. In the meantime, their taxes WOULD go up on January 1, 2013. So either way, with or without the Senate’s bill passing in the House, the top 2% will end up paying more taxes. This is what President Obama wants in order to raise revenue in a way that does not place a burden on the most vulnerable members of our society while we are still trying to climb out of a recession.

  • at least some of the gop are trying to get the middle class tax cuts approved – why is grover norquist so protective of the super wealthy tax reforms ?

    • Where do you think Grover gets his money?

  • Mary Lung

    What a stupid chart Boner is pointing to. Spending is the problem – GOP willingness to spend trillions on needless tax cuts for the super rich – tax cuts that they never should have put in place, trillions of dollars on two decade long wars, one of which was based on lies to us. That is what should be in that big red glob on Boner’s chart – their needless pending and they wouldn’t blink if they had a chance for more.

  • Drop the eligibility for full SSI & mMedicare leigiblity to 59 and 1/2.

    THEN watch the youth of America get jobs as the geezers leave the work force.

  • Even gerrymandering has its limits. Allen West learned that one the hard way, as almost did Michelle Bachmann. They certainly tried to guarantee themselves permanent control of the House, but by aligning themselves with an old, shrinking and increasingly self-destructive fraction of the populace, they’ve guaranteed that their days are limited no matter how much they try to rig the game in their favor.

    Just like in 2010, I suspect we’ll see the hardline far-righters turn on the moderates, only this time it’s going to result in a lot of Democrats winning against widely unpopular incumbents or right-wing splits.

    • Replying to Michael Ross –

      I certainly hope you are right. But I won’t hold my breath.

  • And WHY is gerrymandering allowed? It’s ruinig Florida and has already ruined other states. Ohio a prime example. They openly talk now about their plans to “fix the voting” so Democrats have far less chance to vote. OPENLY. Democrazy is in dire trouble.

  • As we and other said during the political campaigns we already endured, the GOP/Tea Party are ready to sink U.S. Admiral ship with the only purpose to «win» their goal. The goal was, in their first iteration to make this black President to be a one term presidency. Now, it looks like it’s simply to sink the boat altogether.

  • mjcc1987

    Well written

  • I didn’t catch this until I took a close look at the chart. If you check the Green zone, the revenue took a HUGE drop between 2006 and 2008. At the same time, spending SPIKED by at a factor of at least two.

    After George the Second was finished, President Obama actually began cutting the spending side of the equation. (NOT MY WORDS!!!! THESE ARE ON THE CHART SHOWN BY REPRESENTATIVE BOEHNER!!!)


    The spending side of the chart shows that spending will remain flat or will fall slightly until at least 2016, when President Obama leaves office.

    Maybe it is just me, but maybe Representative Boehner is predicting a Republican win in 2016.

  • LET’S Look at the facts Mr John Boehner, The Social Security has been robbed by the U.S. Government by TRILLIONS of dollars over the years to pay it’s way through he Vietnam war and every REPUBLICAN war since. ROBBED the public, is what was done. You promised my father and other men in Hamilton, Ohio you would run only for FOUR tems at the max. Well and now you got reelected for you ??? Term. You have the very best health care, also your wife. in the Nation. You took an OATH to the U.S. Government and superseded it with an oath to the R republican nuts, and tea party asses to disregard that oath to the American public, those who elected you and those of your congressional district in Ohio. Your (mine also) republican party is against Obama because he won and because he is BLACK (I am an Anglo Saxon White ) . I heard the worst statements last year by republicans(they do not deserve a capital ‘r’ in front of their party name !) about OUR President, caused by their prejudice and the ranting and raving of your Propaganda Minister, Rush ‘Joseph Goebbels ‘Limbaugh, who has turned a party of social reformers of the Civil War , into a hate mongering party of ‘Monied Millionaires, voter cheating liars.
    My father was one who talked you into being a congressman, Too bad he is not alive to put you to the challenge of truth and to be an American Citizen, insead of what you are !
    Geral Elmore Martin, formally of Hamilton, Ohio

  • If we go over the cliff, I don’t see a chance in h—for a Republican to get reelected…except for whom it might help Here goes the GOP…hang onto your seats!!

  • 2hheels2

    That graph was debunked months ago. Let’s go over the cliff trying to come to a deal is costing more of the middle class than what the rich will pay. 74% of Americans have an unfavorable view of the GOP. 99.1% of Americans don’t make 1 million a year. This was a joke when they proposed it and not worth listening to now. So the GOP is really even trying to get a deal. Even when other GOP in Congress say they have the votes to pass the senate deal/

  • 2hheels2

    Take all wages and benefits for the year until a deal is done. Then anything that is cut from Americans the same gets cut from The Congress and Senate. They have done nothing the last four years but create the mess were in now.