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"And why the Senate has got to be fixed immediately" is the sub-lede.

I just got done reading Greg Sargent's roundup tonight, and there are a handful of articles that in more or less no uncertain terms paint a very bleak and frustrating picture of what next year is going to look like for the President and the Democrats if they don't heed the warning signs right now.

Mitch McConnell makes crystal clear just what the Republican version of Bi-partisanship actually is. He is only interested in doing "center-right" things, not "center-left" and he says Obama needs to become a "born again moderate" to get their cooperation.

Translation: "Do what we want or we'll pitch a bitch and give you zero cooperation."

Indeed, Mitch McConnell literally promises "more of the same"; More of the same filibustering, stalling tactics explicitly designed to slow down the President's agenda.

Obama made "more of the same" a great campaign slogan in 2008. If he can't reproduce it here with his own party, something is dreadfully wrong.

But wait! Mitch says that there's definitely some area for agreement next year. Totally. Really.

In lowering the deficit.

Face. Meet palm. Hard.

In this same piece, McConnell claims that there is "wide Republican support" for trade agreements with Colombia or whatever.

But you know what? I'm so cynical about the Republican game plan right now that I'll call bullshit on that right this second.

The Republicans do not want to give even the slightest formal modicum of respect to the President, nor do they want to appear to legitimize his Presidency for half a second, lest the Teabagging wing decide they aren't insane enough to be their politicians.

The thing is, there have been a lot of more or less "meta" diaries running around here lately. Someone comes and plays "bad cop" and talks about how Obama hasn't done enough...then a couple more diaries pop up playing "good cop" reminding us of the good he's done in his first not-quite-two-years.

But that's not what this diary is about. I am simply here to point out that the battle lines have been drawn into marble, not sand. The GOP does not plan to do anything different. This is literally, to a "T", "more of the same" being peddled.

I would like to think that our President and his companions in the Democratic Party are smart enough to actually not get taken by this again. Maybe they legitimately misread 2009. Okay. Everyone can have a mulligan, I'm down with that.

But like a boxer over-relying on his favorite punch, the Republicans are actually giving away their strategy going forward. They are convinced it will succeed, probably because they don't think anything will change on the opposite side of the aisle.

It has to.

Because if it does not, 2011 will turn into a meaningless year. And if 2011 is a meaningless year for any sort of legislative activity, then 2012 will only be worse as the campaign to re-elect Barack Obama kicks off with a furor.

2011 is going to be a make-or-break year for the President. Republicans are doing all they can to give the Democrats opportunities with crazy candidates this year and a complete transparency about their plans next year.

Can "The Professor" school the Republicans, make some strong policy statements, and ride a big fat wave into Term 2 after the Republicans go Full Teabag and get a repeat of 1964 in their faces?

I sure hope so.

Originally posted to Progress in the 757 on Thu Aug 05, 2010 at 04:03 PM PDT.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Regret to say I think we've seen the best of this (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DarkestHour

    presidency -- as weak tea as I personally think it has been up to now (major lost opportunities, etc.) -- after this coming election.  It will be total gridlock, and/or he will tack more right wing than he already has up to now after 2010 in order to claim he's gotten legislation passed.

    That is, nothing will get done is progressive, given reduced Dem numbers in House and Senate, and thus the only thing the president will pass might be more right/Establishment-leaning legislation, if at all.

    Which means that aside from Supreme Ct. nominees (which will also likely be net loss "moderate"), his lame duck presidency will be summed up by how Afghanistan goes, and how bad the economy is still doing by then.  Neither of the latter allow much to hope for, sadly.

    [Conservatives are] engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; ...the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness. JK Galbrai

    by Vtdblue on Thu Aug 05, 2010 at 04:15:55 PM PDT

    •  Right little ray of sunshine, aren't you? (6+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      SeanF, Dvalkure, Fe Bongolan, FG, notrouble, ETF

      And I suppose you're going to curl up in a corner in the fetal position and suck your thumb because "it's no use anymore"

      "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White

      by zenbassoon on Thu Aug 05, 2010 at 04:20:40 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  lol (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Fe Bongolan, notrouble, ETF

        i can't add anything else.

        I hear gardening is a nice hobby.

        by SeanF on Thu Aug 05, 2010 at 04:21:32 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Feel free to refute the suppositions, Pollyanna (0+ / 0-)

        or go suck eggs yourself.  Tell me why you think the baseline situation will be any different that what I've outline there.  

        Otherwise, I'm certainly likely to be more dedicated than you to avoid the outcomes that will otherwise occur unless we put the screws to Obama and the Congressional Dems.

        Consider this the Ghost of Xmas Future, which is not inevitable, but which, if we put our heads in the sand with false optimism and WH adulation, will happen as foretold.

        [Conservatives are] engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; ...the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness. JK Galbrai

        by Vtdblue on Thu Aug 05, 2010 at 10:04:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  not sure i agree (4+ / 0-)

    first of all, what did they misread in 2009? They got more legislation passed than any other congress in living memory. His handling of the healthcare debate started off bad. but he masterfully salvaged it with the bipartisan "summit" (or smackdown) being the crucial winning stroke.

    i think they did expect that the republicans would at some level be interested in policy debate. Now it's clear they aren't. I also think they have to go through the motions of reaching out to keep the public engaged and supportive.

    I think it's likely 2011 will be a throw-away year. You might even say, they've passed their legislation, now's the time to sell it, implement it, and sell it some more going into 2012.

    But this november will dictate a lot.

    I hear gardening is a nice hobby.

    by SeanF on Thu Aug 05, 2010 at 04:19:59 PM PDT

  •  What's in story for President Obama next year: (6+ / 0-)

    Another 6,000 David Sirota tool diaries accusing him of being the Antichrist?

    Man goes into cage, cage goes into politics. Shark's in the politics. Our shark.

    by Troubadour on Thu Aug 05, 2010 at 04:20:09 PM PDT

  •  any designer item Michelle wants to purchase* (0+ / 0-)

    Let's let the pols do the selling out, you and I keep fighting for what's right.

    by Matthew Detroit on Thu Aug 05, 2010 at 04:34:41 PM PDT

  •  That's a nice racket (0+ / 0-)

    When Democrats are in the majority, we do barely center-left things, after a titanic struggle to get 60 votes, on paper. But as soon as we get back to, as Yertle put it, 45-55, it's center-right (meaning EVIL) til the end of time. In other words, Democrats literally can't win, but Republicans win without even trying.

    Rights are not supposed to be voted on, subject to a popularity contest. Rachel Maddow

    by Uosdwis on Thu Aug 05, 2010 at 09:19:14 PM PDT

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