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View Diary: 'Both sides do it' must die! (14 comments)

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  •  As Noted in the Diary (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    whaddaya, KenBee
    ...while the minority party in Congress has often voted against debt ceiling increases, it never had the either the numbers or the intent to blackmail the President. Until, that is, Democrat Barack Obama entered the Oval Office.
    You're absolutely right, as the charts above show, that members of both parties have voted against debt ceiling increases in the past, especially when the hike was attached to other legislation they opposed.  They didn't have the votes to stop it.

    But never in modern political history has one of the parties made refusing to raise the debt ceiling the price of its extortion.  And Republicans in the House have the votes to do it.  The Senate GOP has the votes to filibuster it.

    •  Well, it depends. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Bill W, VClib, whaddaya
      But never in modern political history has one of the parties made refusing to raise the debt ceiling the price of its extortion.
      The Democrats did exactly this, in 2006 -- they just didn't have the numbers to actually make good on the threat.  

      What happened is that both sides made EXACTLY  the same threat and cast EXACTLY the same vote for EXACTLY the same reason -- as Senator Reid put it in that link, a "political maneuver" or a "political issue."   The difference is that this time, the threat actually has some  credibility because the Republicans have more votes in support.  

      What you are implying is that if two groups take hostages and threaten to blow everyone up, and both groups clearly say they would blow up the hostages if they could, the one that doesn't have enough explosives to actually do it is not as bad as the one that does have enough explosives to do it.   In other words, both sides are bad, but the one who has the ability to make good on the threat is worse.  

      •  You're correct. (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        coffeetalk, VClib, whaddaya

        Making blanket statements that "our side doesn't do that" is silly if all it leads to is the citing of counter-examples, followed by adding a bunch of qualifiers along the lines of, "well, we don't do it as much as they do".  

        I'll add my nomination for the list of words and phrases to be banished:  "false equivalency".  Now, there are occasional instances where the term legitimately applies, but most of the time I see it used here, it's shorthand for "you have pointed out a double standard which I am applying, but rather than discussing it or even acknowledging its existence, I will insult you."

      •  Democrats Did Not "Do This" in 2006 (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        arlandbaee, whaddaya, KenBee

        Senators and Representatives of both parties have cast symbolic votes against raising the debt ceiling.  They have also voted against raising it when it part of legislation they opposed.

        But Democrats did not make the threat of default a strategy in 2006.  And as Harry Reid pointed out (in the article you helpfully linked to):

        "The Republicans were in power – there were more of them."
        That is, House Democrats didn't have the votes to stop it.  Senate Democrats chose not to filibuster.

        Put another way, Democrats not only didn't have the votes to take hostages, they refused to do so.  Only Republicans have taken the economy hostage over the debt ceiling have the power to execute their captive,

        Again, this isn't just about the debt ceiling hostage taking.  For more, visit here.

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