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Thursday, December 8, 2016

Some in the media have been hounding President Obama to do more to reach to Republican leaders, as if it were their job to compel a deficit-reducing “Grand Bargain” during a jobs crisis.

But they’ve failed to notice the key aspect of the story: Republican leaders in the House and Senate have refused to negotiate with President Obama at all unless he agrees to drop any demand for new revenues.

This telling detail comes in the seventh paragraph of a story in Tuesday’s New York Times detailing the president’s failed attempts to reach out to the GOP, including a secret invitation to watch the film Lincoln at the White House that was refused by all the Republicans invited:

What spurred Mr. Obama to reach out to rank-and-file Republicans with a flurry of phone calls, meals and now Capitol visits were the recent announcements by their leaders — Speaker John A. Boehner and Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky — that they will no longer negotiate with Mr. Obama on budget policy as long as he keeps demanding more tax revenues as the condition for Democrats’ support of reduced spending on Medicare and other entitlement programs.

So unless the President of the United States gives up on his key demand, the “balanced approach” to the deficit he campaigned and was elected upon, they won’t even negotiate.

The Center for American Progress’ Seth Hanlon points out, “Three-quarters of the $2.4 trillion in deficit reduction that had been enacted since 2011 has been in the form of spending cuts, and only one-quarter has come from increasing revenue.”

Hanlon also details $1 trillion in tax breaks for corporations, special interests and the rich that could be eliminated without raising tax rates on any Americans:

HanlonTaxBreaks_table1

How many of these are Speaker Boehner and Senator McConnell willing to consider?

Not one. They want drastic cuts to Medicare and Social Security. And in exchange, they’re offering: Nothing.

And for some reason, this isn’t considered worthy of mention in the majority of the so-called “liberal” media.

Photo: Gage Skidmore via Flickr.com

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