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View Diary: If Republicans hate the sequester so much, why won't they get rid of it? (105 comments)

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  •  Asked Wednesday (3+ / 0-)
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    commonmass, cactusgal, tb mare

    if House GOP leaders intend to wait for the Senate to act, Boehner said, "We do. We do. We do."

    mrspeaker, your ass is showing

    "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

    by Sybil Liberty on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 08:25:22 AM PST

    •  So, this is SO URGENT, that SOMEone MUST act, ... (0+ / 0-)

      ... just not us in the GOP-controlled House.

      Obama must act, for after all, it's his Quester. The Senate must act, for after all, they go first on revenue measures. Oh, well ...

      ... but not us. We in the House did our part in getting here, by getting 98% of what Speaker Boehner, leader of our GOP-controlled House, wanted in his/our Grand Bargain.

      This is the cant of the willfully ignorant, the appeal to the Low Information Constituency, the non-policy of a so-deeply-divided House that no leadership will bring them around.

      There are several answers, ranging from no sequester, to a mini-sequester, to a grander proposal that will pass the GOP-controlled House. The first admits the whole deal was not implementable. The second is hard to do, but is the most sensible for what the GOP itself says is vitally important - addressing the deficit and growing debt. The third is not doable because it means the Republicans will have to propose and pass spending cuts that their own constituency will realize are unacceptable.

      Tough to be a Republican these days, isn't it?

      2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

      by TRPChicago on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 08:47:29 AM PST

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      •  senat-a-quester either (0+ / 0-)

        "Show up. Pay attention. Tell the truth. And don't be attached to the results." -- Angeles Arrien

        by Sybil Liberty on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 08:54:09 AM PST

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      •  The House has already passed two bills (1+ / 0-)
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        proposing substitute cuts for the sequester, most recently in December. Those substitutes, of course were completely unacceptable to Democrats.  

        I would imagine anything the Democratic Senate passes would substitute some tax increases in place of some spending cuts, which would be completely unacceptable to the Republicans.  

        Which is why the sequester will likely happen.  

        •  Those bills looked like bogus stalking horses... (0+ / 0-)

          So it's all the more important for Democrats to be SOMEwhat reasonable.

          I think we have been, more than most of the Progressive community likes. And Yes, I agree the sequester is getting more and more likely.

          A raft of opportunities are coming up for dealing with the budget, the debt and spending levels. That's why I believe the President spent so much time - relatively - last night on the sequester and spending priorities, personalizing the message by mentioning specific proposals to help the middle class.

          As for sequester cliffdom, frankly I'm for it for a while, because it will cut the military budget more then we'll ever get by any other means.

          Austerity cuts are not sensible in this economy. But if we must have them, matching them up between domestic and military spending is splendid discipline for the Republicans. The "match" principle being very roughly 1 (entitlements): 4 (other domestic cuts): 4-plus (military). And it might make revenue raising more palatable.

          2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

          by TRPChicago on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 10:31:15 AM PST

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          •  I agree that what the House passed (0+ / 0-)

            was never going to get any Democratic votes, and the House Republicans knew that when they passed it.

            I think that it is, however, incumbent on Democrats, if they want to avoid the sequester, to put on the table, in concrete terms (like bill) their proposal for avoiding the sequester.  Unless they do, it will be hard for them to blame the Republicans for a sequester that was a White House proposal in the first place.  

            The White House saying, "Yes, we proposed it, but we never expected that Republicans would accept it" is not going to fly, I think.  

            •  So, you're treating the House bills as the GOP's (0+ / 0-)

              ... bona fide proposal, and it's the Democrats' turn now.

              OK, the response might be to make concrete revenue increases from specific tax code changes, some military cuts (such as those projects the Pentagon itself as proposed but Congress votes to keep) and no subsidies for oil companies (as a spending cut), for example. That wouldn't advance the state of the art much, but it would put concrete proposals on the table ... as they have been before. These need not total the sequester amount, but I doubt the end result of whatever negotiation eventually takes place will either.

              Now what?

              Given Boehner's foolish 98% braggadocio, I don't think the public will put the blame on Obama for the sequester. And I'm pretty sure the administration doesn't think so, either.

              I think the Presdent should order readiness to implement the Congressional sequester. Whosever originally proposed it, Congress passed it with austerity zeal; it can live with the constituent reactions or it can fix it. In either case, it's Congress who is responsible and accountable whether its members like it or not.

              2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

              by TRPChicago on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 11:29:22 AM PST

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              •  The President treated the House Bills (1+ / 0-)
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                as the Republican proposal when he said that they wanted the elderly to bear the brunt of avoiding the sequester.  

                As a matter of public relations, I think, if the Democrats want to blame the Republicans for  sequester that was proposed by the administration, they need to come forward with a concrete alternative proposal that will seem reasonable to the majority of Americans, put it to a vote (it will have to happen in the Senate), and have Republicans reject it.  

                Otherwise, the story is that the Administration proposed the sequester, and Republicans accepted the Administration's proposal, and the only side that has brought a bill to the floor of Congress that would eliminate it is the Republican side.  

                •  We disagree who'll get the blame and, I suspect, (1+ / 0-)
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                  ... we also disagree who's actually responsible for it.

                  Politically, it's quite clear that the House doesn't want to take the heat for proposing what it knows will be constituency-distressing spending cuts. It has realized that while its deficit/debt/sky-is-falling rhetoric works for its conservative base at a very high altitude, life gets sticky fast when specific things are in jeopardy, such as disaster relief for hurricane and tornados.

                  Boehner doesn't lead in the House because he can't - it's too fragmented. He is effectively paralyzed by his Republicans, feeling scorn and unwilling to bring more bills to the floor that the Democrats have to "help" him pass over Tea Party/Far Right Republican objections.

                  He backed off the "fiscal cliff" deadline because he knew the heat would be on his party ... and Mr. 98% Boehner will try as hard as he can to shift the blame for the sequester on ANYbody else. This is proving difficult, despite the gimmicky clocks the Republicans display at press conferences.

                  Two clips played side-by-side will explain where Boehner and the President stand:

                  "When you look at the final agreement, I got 98% of what I wanted. I'm pretty happy." (Boehner to Scott Pelly on CBS TV News, August 1 2011)

                  "Is this the deal I would have preferred? No. But this compromise does make a serious down payment on the deficit reduction we need, and gives each party a strong incentive to get a balanced plan done before the end of the year." (Obama after signing the Budget Control Act on August 2, 2011)

                  It's going to be tough to be a Republican if they won't change the music or the lyrics.

                  2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

                  by TRPChicago on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 12:12:34 PM PST

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                  •  I think it remains to be seen who will be blamed (1+ / 0-)
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                    by the public. I think both sides will do little but point fingers over the next three weeks, as it become more and more obvious sequester will happen.  

                    As for who IS to blame, I'm of the "a pox on both your houses" view.  Republicans threatened to hold the debt ceiling hostage, and the Administration came up with the Sequester to woo them off of that position, and is now trying to disavow their own political strategy.  

                    Plenty of blame to go around.  

                    •  Few Americans will feel impact of Sequestration (1+ / 0-)
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                      Those who lose their job because of defense and non-defense cuts will certainly feel it but I expect 90% of citizens will not be able to identify any difference in their life.

                      So those directly impacted will choose who to blame based on their politics.  Republicans will blame Democrats and Democrats will blame Republicans.  

                      The most important way to protect the environment is not to have more than one child.

                      by nextstep on Wed Feb 13, 2013 at 01:08:05 PM PST

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