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President Barack Obama meets with bipartisan House and Senate Leadership in the Cabinet Room of the White House to discuss his upcoming fiscal policy speech, April 13, 2011. Seated with the President from left are: Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill.; Sen. Mitch McC
The talks continue.
The fiscal cliff curb debate has been put in its proper rhetorical place now that the traditional media has been reminded by Newtown, horribly, of what real catastrophe looks like. There's even a slim chance that House Republicans will be chastened enough to realize the battle they are fighting on behalf of the nation's millionaires is increasingly crass and inappropriate. Perhaps.

At any rate, the negotiating does continue, and it appears that House Speaker John Boehner might be moving toward rationality. First, he's offering to take the debt limit out of the mix for the next year, but with still-unreasonable strings attached.

The offer came Friday, according to people in both parties familiar with the talks, as part of the latest effort by Boehner (R-Ohio) to strike a deal with President Obama to replace more than $500 billion in painful deficit-reduction measures set to take effect in January. [...]

Boehner’s offer signals that he expects a big deal with sufficient savings to meet his demand that any debt limit increase be paired dollar for dollar with spending cuts. That would permit him to keep a key vow to his party—and head off a potentially nasty debt-limit fight—at least until the end of next year.

“Our position has not changed,” Boehner spokesman Michael Steel said Sunday. “Any debt limit increase would require cuts and reforms of a greater amount.”

The White House rejected Boehner’s offer, saying it would raise too little cash to significantly dent record budget deficits and do nothing to extend emergency unemployment benefits into the new year, according to a Democrat familiar with the talks. But the offer was viewed as a breakthrough, the Democrat said.

Boehner has also moved on tax rates, proposing that the Bush tax cuts for those making more than $1 million expire, but again has unacceptable demands in return. That demand is $1 trillion in spending cuts, starting with Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

But what this latest offer from Boehner shows is that an immovable President Obama, with mandate from voters behind him, doesn't have to make damaging concessions.

8:48 AM PT: Expect more news soon ...

The President and Speaker Boehner are meeting at the White House right now, @MajorCBS reports.

@CNHorn via TweetDeck

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 08:35 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (28+ / 0-)

    "There’s class warfare, all right, but it’s my class, the rich class, that’s making war, and we’re winning." —Warren Buffett

    by Joan McCarter on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 08:35:20 AM PST

  •  This is not relenting. He is asking for (16+ / 0-)

    massive cuts to Social Security and Medicare in exchange for a tax raise on $1 million and lifting the debt ceiling for a year. That's not a deal.

  •  Same old shit... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    smiley7, hulibow

    just a different day. He'll call a news conference and say exactly the oppposite before the day is out.Let's hold hands and go over that speed bump together and find out what happens.

    •  The biggest shift I've heard of in the past week (0+ / 0-)

      was from Wall Street, not Boehner.  The Street has started rumblings that maybe going over the cliff wouldn't be the disaster they first judged it to be.  I think some of them are figuring out that Krugman was right - that cutting billions of dollars out of the economy when it's as weak as it is would present more problems than it solves.

      Especially since Bernanke came out last week and told the country that interest rates aren't going to rise any time soon and he's willing to continue buying assets from the banks, as well as the ECB sticking to their austerity path, it only makes sense that the bond market would back off their demands for spending reductions.

      "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

      by SueDe on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 11:34:01 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Yeah. He's moving a smidgen (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    smiley7, RichM, chrismorgan

    But he's still offering large nonstarter cuts as "payment" for the trivial increases in taxes he's willing to propose.

    Not to mention the fact that he probably doesn't have the votes even for the proposal he floated in his caucus.

    •  it will be Obama (3+ / 0-)

      who moves closer to Boehner, but the media will claim exactly the opposite is happening and go on and on about how hard and monumental it is for Boehner to infinitesimally break with Republican orthodoxy and how we should all admire his disinterested and brave act of statesmanship, and other such nonsense.

      Regarding the question of how the votes are to be found: if Obama and Boehner play it right, most of the votes to pass the tax raises will come from the lame-duck Congress, while the votes to pass the ensuing Medicare cuts will come after the new Congress is seated.

      This way, the burden of voting for tax raises will fall on retiring and defeated Republican representatives, for whom disobeying Grover Norquist no longer matters.

      And the burden of voting to slash Medicare will fall more heavily on incoming Democrats, so that a new, freshly-rebranded group of teabaggers can run against them in 2014.

      It's bipartisan by the Beltway definition of the word: Republicans win, Democrats lose.

      "In America, the law is king." --Thomas Paine

      by limpidglass on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 09:39:54 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't have a lot of patience (5+ / 0-)

        for the Obama as Manchurian Candidate theories.

        Obama did what he did in 2011 because he talked himself into thinking that was what the American people wanted after 2010 and also fooled himself into thinking deficit reduction was a point of common ground with the Rs (turned out, not so much.  The Rs insistence on continually lowering the revenue base proved they're not serious)

        Since summer 2011 we have....

        Occupy wall street

        A campaign based on raising taxes and protecting benefits (he's open to affecting providers and insurance companies) where he WON.

        Enough stronger economy to take a financial shock if talks break down.

        First hand experience of what debt ceiling brinksmanship does to the country

        A  much less squishy Dem caucus, one that's enough to the left of his 2011 positions that they can kill anything organized along those lines, with or without Obama's vote.

        You're just assuming Obama wants to dismantle the safety net.   This time around there isn't any gun to his head, and he's had 18 months to think about how to handle the next debt ceiling crisis hostage situation.

        •  gosh, why on earth would I think (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          that Obama is itching to "reform" Medicare and SS?

          Is it because he said again and again that he wanted to do "entitlement reform"? Is it because he called for a Catfood Commission to study Social Security as one of the first acts of his presidency and stacked it with deficit hawks? Is it because he put Medicare and SS on the table last year during the last "fiscal cliff" bullshit? Is it because he explicitly said there wasn't much difference between him and Romney on Medicare/SS, and that they would have to be "tweaked" like Reagan did?

          Your eyes would have to be pretty tightly shut not to see a pattern developing here.

          He's not a "Manchurian candidate" in the sense you mean.

          There is no grand conspiracy to deceive; the conspirators ARE the deceived, who conspired to deceive themselves. Many turned a blind eye to what he said, because their desperate need to believe overwhelmed their sense of caution.

          He had to temper his rhetoric on the New Deal programs to get elected as a Democrat; but surely after eight years of Bush people came to expect that their politicians' words don't always accord with their actions. Why they didn't apply that hard-won wisdom to Obama, I don't know.

          I can understand a voter who said "I voted for Obama with eyes open, understanding that we had little choice. Romney is a man who made a living buying up struggling companies, chopping them up, and selling them off for spare parts. He would have been an absolutely shitty president. But that doesn't mean Obama is necessarily the good guy here."

          That's a reality-based argument. But I cannot understand or countenance this willful and persistent denial of reality in order to make Obama into something he is not.

          The election's over. There's no need to overlook and play down the president's defects for the sake of victory.

          I'm hoping that people can wean themselves off this need to believe absolutely in the president. Because when he does disappoint, they will swing from one extreme to the other, from unthinking, unquestioning adoration to complete crushing despair and cynicism and total withdrawal from the political process--which last will only serve the Republicans and the 1%.

          In the hopes of forestalling that outcome, I'm giving this advice: start trying to kick right now, 'cuz it's so much easier than being forced to go cold turkey.

          "In America, the law is king." --Thomas Paine

          by limpidglass on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:55:11 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  There's no need to be chicken little either (0+ / 0-)

            I believe the Prez would like to do more things along the lines of what he already did in Obamacare (the infamous "cut" of 700+ billion which was actually a double-payment)

            I think he wants to control costs in Medicare without limiting benefits, and would be open to a social security change that would extend its lifetime without affecting benefits (eg, raising the income cap in a way tied to COLA so it gets more revenue as costs rise).   I base that on things he's actually done, in public, and in some cases gotten through congress.

            I also think he's been willing to put more on the table than he wants during a negotiation when he's felt that something larger was at stake to try to make a deal...and that after never EVER getting a deal AND being crucified for going objectively too far, that this time around he's going to stick with what he actually wants....and what the Dem caucus will let him pass (which currently doesn't include any changes to SS or any cuts to Medicare benefits).

            Evidence for this belief is how he used the Bush tax cuts to get DADT and START passed in the lame duck session, plus what he considered to be stimulus (unemployment extensions and temporary SS tax cut).  He campaigned on letting them expire, but thought the other things were more important.

            Even if you don't believe Obama wants a better deal than he ( was R sources who leaked the offer) offered in 2011, what makes you think such a deal would make it through the current Senate?   Or hell, even the house?    The Tea partiers won't pass a dime of revenue increase and Pelosi won't tolerate tinkering with Medicare benefits.  There aren't enough votes to pass a bill with both revenue and medicare cuts.

            In 2012, there is no key legislation to be held hostage.  The battle lines are drawn.   The only real risk of another hostage situation is the debt ceiling and I have to think he has a better strategy this time around, because he knows the Rs aren't serious about negotiating for anything except dismantling the safety net.

            One of us will be proved right in the months to come.

            (I disagree with Obama on national security issues and assassination as a policy, plus the Afghan surge in general, although at least that one he campaigned on.  I voted for him with eyes open, because Romney was worse on those, plus damn near everything else.   I'm not blind to his faults and know he wants to do a Reagan-like "preserve SS for an extra 20 years" type deal with medicare and SS.   But I think he also knows the damage lowering benefits will do.  You can't improve the tax or provider or insurance structure without putting them on the table.   That does put benefits at more risk than not trying.  But I don't think that is his real objective.)

      •  " bipartisan by the Beltway definition", R win, Ds (0+ / 0-)


        Ain't it the truth.

        Pretty damn sickening what passes for media nowdays.

  •  I'm over it (8+ / 0-)

    all this posturing, lying, skipping town - the Republicans seem smaller today than they did last Thursday. I have a feeling that the resentment & disdain for these folks will grow over the next few weeks if they don't follow (to use Boehner's favorite line) what the American people want. I'd bet my emotionally drained and physically exhausted feelings are shared - add some more unnecessary bickering to the mix Boehner, I dare you.

    I'm pretty tired of being told what I care about.

    by hulibow on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 09:13:42 AM PST

  •  of course he's "relenting" (0+ / 0-)

    After another week or so of fearmongering about the imminent
    fiscal cliff, Boehner will dramatically agree to a tiny, unnoticeable tax raise just before the deadline, which will be passed.

    The markets will simultaneously emit a collective sigh of relief that disaster was averted, and shortly after the deadline, Obama will say we have to be nice and bipartisan and cut Medicare in exchange for Boehner's "cooperation."

    The noise we hear then will be the sound of that other shoe dropping, with a massive thud.

    This whole charade reminds me of two dogs circling each other warily, while very verrry veeeerrrrrrrry slowly sniffing each other, before they decide to be friends.

    But what this latest offer from Boehner shows is that an immovable President Obama, with mandate from voters behind him, doesn't have to make damaging concessions.
    Indeed, now that he will never run for office again, he need not make a single concession to the Democratic base that damages the interests of the 1%. He is free to be as bipartisany as he wants to be, and engage in Grand Bargains to his heart's content.

    That's probably not what you meant, but it's almost certainly how Obama sees it.

    And y'know what? It doesn't matter to him what you mean or what you think. He's the Deciderer-in-Chief now. This man takes it upon himself to summarily execute American citizens he thinks are a threat to the national security, assuring us that "internal deliberations in the executive branch" are sufficient to satisfy the Fourth Amendment guarantee of due process.

    So I doubt popular opposition will stop him from cutting Medicare and SS if he thinks that's the sensible course (and every indication is that he does). He'll do what he thinks is best for us--whether we like it or not.

    "In America, the law is king." --Thomas Paine

    by limpidglass on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 09:24:13 AM PST

  •  maybe I just missed it before, but (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I don't remember extending UI to be a part of the president's position before (of course, it needs to be).

    Could Dems be pulling the goalposts back after the last few years of seeing Boehner & company always move them to the right?

    It would be nice to see.

  •  I don't envy being the President. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, Sybil Liberty, askew

    Upper hand or not, I would not want to plunge right back into negotiations with a brick wall on the heels of last week.

    •  Idk, 'John is that what you would tell those kids' (0+ / 0-)

      seems a pretty good rejoined to whatever kill the safety net b/s Bonehead brings up at a time when its beyond painfully clear we need to spend tens of billions more just on education, school securtiy and mental health care.

  •  Maybe (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wishingwell, rightiswrong, Stude Dude, CwV

    I'm really cynical, but I think that Boehner would much rather talk finance than gun control.  

  •  Their positiion has not changed (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Yep they're still fetal sucking their thumbs

    The 1st Amendment gives you the right to say stupid things, the 1st Amendment doesn't guarantee a paycheck to say stupid things.

    by JML9999 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:06:40 AM PST

  •  I'll give him high marks for his remarks on kids (9+ / 0-)

    but Obama better not sell out the equally vulnerable elderly. And the very first, the very first, who lose out in any round of budget cuts are always working age adults.  No one wants to fund services for adults over 18.  And this is exactly why there is never enough money for the mentally ill.

  •  It doesn't sound like he is relenting to me. It (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    slinkerwink, RichM, smiley7

    sounds like a counter offer that our side has no business even listening to at all.  

    The answer from our side should be "No"....period.  We have no reason to sway from our position and so shouldn't entertain any "relenting" offers.

  •  No deals. Make the Republicans come to the (9+ / 0-)

    table and accept Obama's budget.  Make them own this fiscal madness.

    "Lets show the rascals what Citizens United really means."

    by smiley7 on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:10:55 AM PST

  •  Amazing what happens when you negotiate (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RadGal70, FistJab

    from a position of strength and make it clear you will hold your ground.

    This is obviously far from an acceptable deal and the White House said so but Boehner moved and the onus remains on him to continue to move. A deal will happen once he has moved enough. Obama will throw him a bone at some point so that he can claim some sort of victory but it won't be something big and it won't happen until Obama has gotten what he wants out of Boehner. It may cost Boehner his job but that is his and his party's problem not Obama's.

    "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

    by Andrew C White on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:12:22 AM PST

    •  Why does Obama have to throw a bone??? Is that (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      smiley7, slinkerwink

      required when you hold all the cards and have a majority of support from Americans?  

      •  He doesn't have to but he will (0+ / 0-)

        that too is part of the game. It allows Boehner to save a little face and it allows Obama to say he negotiated and that everybody gave a little something in a nice bi-partisany fashion. Reality is Republicans will have given 98% and Democrats 2%.

        "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

        by Andrew C White on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:47:00 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  "Boehner moved" (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      greenbell, SycamoreRich

      Hmmm . . . , in return for massive cuts to the social safety net, for which the users of that safety net have been paying all their working lives, the Speaker is offering to "concede" to gentler (for millionaires) versions of what was going to happen in a couple of weeks anyway, the originally legislated end to a tax break on the 2% on top of the tax break that the 98% and the 2% get on income below $250k. Only by Beltway standards could this be regarded as anything but resistance to accomplishing anything fair or balanced.

      •  Part of the political game (0+ / 0-)

        yes, he moved. Did he load the proposal with a ton of stuff he knows he'll never get? Yes, of course. It's all part of the political game and it allows him to move slightly, piece by piece, in the direction he knows full well he has no choice but to go, all while maintaining some semblance of cover with his caucus and his base voters.

        Next report he'll move further while demanding that we dismantle Obamacare or increase the age for Medicare to 107... and that Obama kick in a 1909 T206 Honus Wagner baseball card too.

        But Boehner moved and the rest of it is just talk. But Boehner has a lot more moving to do before he stops doing his little dance.

        "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

        by Andrew C White on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:45:17 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  That could not be said better. (0+ / 0-)

        It sums up the situation perfectly.

  •  Exactly....relenting would mean that they are (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sweet Endolphins Heal

    accepting what must happen or we dive over the cliff.  Obama has zero reason to move from his position.

  •  Is the House even in session? eom (0+ / 0-)

    'Goodwill' between the GOP and the President is as abundant as unicorn farts - Me'

    by RichM on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:14:19 AM PST

  •  and if there are "entitlement" cuts to be made, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    smiley7, chrismorgan

    they'll have to be itemized by the Rethuglicans NOT the Dems.  There is NO reason for the Dems to come up with ANY OF them--especially since, if they do, they will immediately be demonized by those very Rethugs:  Democrats CUT your MEDICARE!!!

    Just hold the line, PBO.

    If the plutocrats begin the program, we will end it. -- Eugene Debs.

    by livjack on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:16:18 AM PST

  •  None of this matters (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Without Republican votes, it doesn't matter what agreement these two come up with. Boehner couldn't deliver the morning paper right now.

    •  I agree. He doesn't have the votes to do anything. (0+ / 0-)

      "I'm totally pro-choice in the matter of abortion. But of course I'm also so radically pro-life that I think every person from birth onward must have full and affordable access to healthcare." - Gail Collins

      by gritsngumbo on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:34:00 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Just More delusional posturing from Boehner (4+ / 0-)

    I've seen this headline all over the press this morning. Why bother giving this any more space than it deserves?

    Republican policies have cost many American lives over the past 10 years. They deserve no serious consideration.

    These people need to be pushed back into the irrelevance from where they emerged.

  •  This is no 'relenting' (5+ / 0-)

    he knows tax rates go up, if we do nothing. We do nothing, we get tax increases. He wants entitlement cuts in exchange for the tax hikes we KNOW are coming
    Do nothing and we get tax hikes and no entitlement cuts

    "I'm sculpting now. Landscapes mostly." ~ Yogi Bear

    by eXtina on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:22:16 AM PST

  •  Smells like more kabuki (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    smiley7, diffrntdrummr

    Boehner is holding the economy hostage because he can't get re-elected Speaker by the lunatic fringe which is driving the train in his party if he cuts a deal now. Of course he can't make it look like that's what he's doing, hence the smoke screen.

    I don't expect any serious movement until the election for Speaker is over Jan 3 unless it's a total cave by the Democrats.  

    •  But why would he give in at all (0+ / 0-)

      if his motivation was as you say?
      I agree that that's his prime concern, but isn't this a bad move in that direction from his POV?
      It's clearly a posturing gesture, he knows that he's not going to get the mass spending cuts in social programs and he can't fend off the mass spending cuts in Defense spending.
      Boner is a puzzle.

      If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

      by CwV on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 11:13:40 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I don't think any deal will pass the House... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    smiley7, CwV, slinkerwink

    At least I hope not.  Pelosi should lock down Dems to vote against it if any entitlements are even touched and Boehner will lose a lot of his far right flank if any taxes go up in the agreement.  

    Pres will put a ton of pressure on Pelosi to sell his shit sandwich.  We'll have to be ready for the push back by contacting house reps and saying no to any entitlement cuts no matter what.  

    The NRA is the Gun Manufacturer Lobby. Nothing more. Their pontification about the second amendment is nothing more than their ad jingle. They're the domestic version of the Military Industrial Complex.

    by Jacoby Jonze on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:30:54 AM PST

  •  Club for Growth squelches Boehner (0+ / 0-)


    “First Speaker Boehner offered to raise tax rates after promising not to, and now he’s offering to raise the debt ceiling," Club For Growth President Chris Chocola said in a statement. "Raising tax rates is anti-growth and raising the debt ceiling is pro-government growth – and this is the Republican position?”
    And Brian Beutler, TPM:
    Lest you conclude that progress in fiscal cliff negotiations is symptomatic of a weakened conservative appetite for taking the debt limit hostage, allow me to dissuade you. The truth is quite different.

    "Who the hell is Grover Norquist, anyway?" - George H.W. Bush

    by rsmpdx on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:34:16 AM PST

  •  Fuck Boehner... (4+ / 0-)

    ...we don't need a smaller safety net, we need a bigger one. And, yes, I'm willing to pay for it (read: taxes).

    If the tragedy in Newtown has revealed anything, it's that our health services are criminally underfunded, mental health being at the top of the list.

    Mr. President, please tell Boehner to fuck off somewhere with his piss-ant little minnions in Congress and let those tax cuts expire!!!!

    Only the weak & defeated are called to account for their crimes.

    by rreabold on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:34:44 AM PST

  •  I have a deal for Boehner... (0+ / 0-)

    He can have his tax cuts for the wealthy in exchange for reducing the Social Security and Medicare ages and an end to the debt limit.  Remove the limitations on Social Security and Medicare that restrict them to only spend whatever the payroll tax comes in.  Untie the Treasury's hands and shoe laces, so it can pay for whatever the democratically elected government of the United States decides it should pay for by key stroking the money into the Treasury's account at the Fed.

    And, screw the deficit hype.  It is just an excuse to try to get the people to buy into the idea that somehow the less than wealthy have to be subjected to some kind of pain (cutting Social Security and Medicare and the existence of unemployment) imposed by their government because the government has to beg for government IOUs (otherwise known as currency) from the private sector that the government created in the first place.

    Increase the IRS enforcement capabilities in order to avoid tax evasion and thereby maintain demand for government IOUs (currency) in order to pay the tax obligations imposed by the government.

    It is sick that we are even discussing deficits and cutting social programs in the face of the gigantic unemployment problem in this country.  So, let's add the jobs guarantee on top of the above.  Maybe that will grow the public sector deficit to the point where we actually have a growing economy.

  •  Stuff is aligning ala 1995 (0+ / 0-)

    Saw this in 1995 w/ Gingrich gov't shutdown combined with OK City.  Sometimes the radical right gets enough wins that they change the nation exactly as they asked.  Sadly for all of us, what they are asking for is a broken government and a bunch of dead little kids.  When that happens, enough people who vote R find themselves grossed out with what was wrought.  There is a backlash.  We win for a while.  I loved the POTUS speech, Joe Scarburough's epiphany, and now this fiscal cliff nonsense being seen as nonsense (e.g., it makes no sense to the community at large).  Hopefully, we will wind up with reasoned votes for a while as the right reassesses their sudden clusterfuck of a situation.  The alternative is that they blow it further and get a wave election against them.  Either way, I think we are over the inertia we need to start getting some actual legislation in the next 0-3 years.

    Mmmmm. Sprinkles. - H.J. Simpson.

    by ten canvassers on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 10:54:04 AM PST

  •  Never underestimate GOP ability to be crass (0+ / 0-)

    With that said, hold the line on letting bush tax cuts expire even if it effects everyone.

    "The real wealth of a nation consists of the contributions of its people and nature." -- Rianne Eisler

    by noofsh on Mon Dec 17, 2012 at 12:55:26 PM PST

  •  $1.1 T in cuts next year is what he's asking for, (0+ / 0-)

    since the deficient will likely be that by October, especially after those cuts crater the economy.

    All bc Thugs are Greed's b**ches and can't do basic math.

  •  Obviously overlooked (0+ / 0-)

    I'm betting on 4-500k+ income for increasing taxes, increasing Medicare age justified by supposed overlapping with Obamacare, one trillion for zombie defense system, and obviously overlooked: The budget for our moon bases

  •  why? (0+ / 0-)

    Is this the same Michael Steel who supposedly gives a right-leaning (but independent) view on MSNBC?  

    I've never believed a word that either the MSNBC Michael Steel said or the former Bush administration idiot Ron Chrystie mouthed, but I thought that at least that Mr. Steel, after being ousted from leadership of the Republican Party, was free to voice honest, though biased, reactions every now and again.

    These Republican myna birds really know how to rake in money for simply reading whatever is written for them and expressing faux outrage whenever they are called out on their lies and purposeful misstatements.  

    If this is the same Michael Steel, why is MSNBC supporting the Republican Party and Republican agenda by paying Mr. Boehner's "spokesperson" for analysis?  They are not paying President Obama's spokesperson or Senate Majority Leader Reid's spokesperson for similar analysis.  These spokespeople are just doing their job and are not double-billing for their services.  

    This is shameful and makes me distrust MSNBC much more than I had started to for other reasons.  (Now, Chris Hayes and to an extent Richard Wolffe are about the only MSNBC hosts or pundits I trust.

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