Skip to main content

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
President Obama told Republicans at least some of what they wanted to hear in his trip to Capitol Hill Wednesday to schmooze with House Republicans.
House Republicans emerged from a rare meeting with Obama on Wednesday afternoon saying he assured them he was serious about cutting programs like Social Security and Medicare in order to reduce the long-term deficit.
“It was a really great first step,” said Rep. Reid Ribble (R-WI). “He did express a willingness to give on entitlements.”

“He focused a lot on entitlements,” said Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL).

Of course, what he also told them is that he wants revenue to go along with those cuts, which Republicans continue to not be able to stomach. Which is very good news for the nation's retirees.  No, they're still insisting that Obama convince fellow Democrats to give Republicans everything they want. That, John Boehner says, will be the real test of leadership: whether Obama can get his entire party to capitulate on the cuts that will destroy them politically.

Greg Sargent writes about this dynamic, examining the strategy and end goals of the Republicans and the White House. The White House thinks they can win over a few House members and more Senate Republicans to strike a deal that will bring over enough Republicans to pass it. Republicans, on the other hand, think that Obama will offer a budget in April with serious entitlement cuts and that his dropping approval number (presumably sequester fall-out) will force Democrats to accept them, and deeper spending cuts. That'll make some Republicans, enough to get a grand bargain passed, relent on some revenue, but the Democrats will have passed cuts Social Security and Medicare, and will be the ones blamed for them since they offered them up.

It's an obvious and not-so devious trap, one that congressional Democrats can dismantle. They need to stand with Sen. Bernie Sanders in sending the message loud and clear that they're not going to be down with the role either Obama or the Republicans envision for them. They need to stand against any benefits cuts in Social Security and Medicare.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Thu Mar 14, 2013 at 09:09 AM PDT.

Also republished by Social Security Defenders and Daily Kos.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site