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View Diary: President Obama: Debt Ceiling Negotiation "Is Not A Game I Will Play." (117 comments)

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  •  Protecting Obamacare (19+ / 0-)

    I've been critical of Obama's negotiating strategy but he could have made the calculation that he had to win a second term to get Obamacare implemented. Now that that is done he can play hardball.

    You could also make the case that Obama would have overplayed his hand if he acted stronger earlier. The republicans are hurting now and it is easier for Obama to stand his ground with less of a chance of a backlash.

    For instance the GOP has to consider:

    * Corporate financial backers have thrown everything and the kitchen sink at ousting democrats and electing republicans with little success
    * The demographic bomb has started exploding, and even the most (ok not the most) GOP strategist can see the blast wave coming.
    * On a national level the social conservative position is a losing argument.
    * Protecting the 2%ers aren't winning many supporters even among the GOP.

    •  There's a lot to be said for that (9+ / 0-)

      If we had defaulted in 2011 he would have probably been blamed for it, because he is the president and the buck stops with him. Even if voters also blamed the Republicans, that wouldn't have helped him, since Romney wasn't in Congress and could have easily distanced himself (he would have had to pick a different running mate to do that). A default would have had catastrophic economic consequences that would have likely made reelection impossible. The president had to prevent that, both to get reelected and because as president it's his job to prevent the government from defaulting and triggering a global financial crisis.

      He made a mistake trusting Boehner, although I think at least at the beginning Boehner was telling the truth when he said he would not mess around w/the debt ceiling. I don't think either of them anticipated the degree of willingness by the Tea Partiers to blow up the economy.

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