Republican Senators John McCain, Lindsey Graham and Bob Corker are all threatening to derail the START treaty, which they have all supported in the past, over votes scheduled by Harry Reid for “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” and the DREAM Act. Every living former Secretary of State and Secretary of Defense supports the treaty, and these Senators have also supported it as it’s critical to monitoring Russian nukes and keeping loose nukes out of the hands of terrorists. It’s also critical in connection with Russian support for sanctions against Iran.
Frankly, it’s disgusting. They’re all claiming they’re upset with partisan politics when they have all been playing the political game for the past two years.
Now they’re willing to risk national security in the name of petty politics. They have no shame. If they blow this for political reasons, Obama and the Dems need to bludgeon them with this over and over again.
UPDATE:The reaction to these threats has been swift.
“What some Republicans like Corker seem to be saying is, ‘We will let nuclear weapons proliferate if you let gays serve,’ “ said Fred Sainz, a spokesman for the Human Rights Campaign.
Hopefully these Senators have painted themselves in a corner here. If the treaty goes down, they will be blamed for sacrificing our nuclear security for their petty grievances.
After demagoguing 9/11 for the past decade and constantly talking about the heroes of that terrible time, the Republicans blocked benefits for 9/11 first responders. Many of the have become seriously ill and some have died due to what they had to breath while responding to the terrorist attack. Jon Stewart lets them have it.
Really? Charles Krauthammer give his take on the Obama tax compromise, and like me he thinks this is a great deal for the president. Of course, many of the left can’t see it.
Hence that news-conference attack on what the administration calls the “professional left” for its combination of sanctimony and myopia. It was Obama’s Sister Souljah moment. It had a prickly, irritated sincerity – their ideological stupidity and inability to see the “long game” really do get under Obama’s skin – but a decidedly calculated quality, too. Where, after all, does the left go? Stay home on Election Day 2012? Vote Republican?
No, says the current buzz, the left will instead challenge Obama for the Democratic nomination. Really now? For decades, African Americans have been this party’s most loyal constituency. They vote 9 to 1 Democratic through hell and high water, through impeachment and recession, through everything. After four centuries of enduring much, African Americans finally see one of their own achieve the presidency. And their own party is going to deny him a shot at his own reelection?
Not even Democrats are that stupid. The remaining question is whether they are just stupid enough to not understand – and therefore vote down – the swindle of the year just pulled off by their own president.
We still need stimulus in the economy, so this deal is good for the economy. Also, it helps Obama politically. Let’s hope the Democrats are stupid enough to kill it.
Everyone seems to have an opinion about President Obama’s press conference yesterday. It depends of course, on how one views his tax cut deal. I think he made the best possible deal, and he left enough time for a real push for START and DADT.
Liberals are furious, and we’re getting the usual hysteria from many on the left. The usual suspects like Olbermann, Maddow and Schultz funneled the anger as usual, though others like Chris Matthews and Lawrence O’Donnell argued that the President struck a good deal.
I liked seeing Obama take on his critics, particularly those who consistently let the perfect be the enemy of the good. Here are some of the highlights:
So this notion that somehow we are willing to compromise too much reminds me of the debate that we had during health care. This is the public option debate all over again. So I pass a signature piece of legislation where we finally get health care for all Americans, something that Democrats had been fighting for, for a hundred years – but because there was a provision in there that they didn’t get, that would have affected maybe a couple million people, even though we got health insurance for 30 million people, and the potential for lower premiums for a hundred million people, that somehow that was a sign of weakness and compromise.
Now, if that’s the standard by which we are measuring success or core principles, then let’s face it, we will never get anything done. People will have the satisfaction of having a purist position, and no victories for the American people. And we will be able to feel good about ourselves, and sanctimonious about how pure our intentions are and how tough we are. And in the meantime the American people are still seeing themselves not able to get health insurance because of a pre-existing condition, or not being able to pay their bills because their unemployment insurance ran out. That can’t be the measure of how we think about our public service. That can’t be the measure of what it means to be a Democrat.
“This country was founded on compromise. I couldn’t go through the front door of this country’s founding,” he later added. “And you know, if we were really thinking about ideal positions, we wouldn’t have a Union.
Towards the end, he declared: “I don’t think there’s a single Democrat out there, who if they looked at where we started when I came into office and look at where we are now, would say that somehow we have not moved in the direction that I promised. Take a tally, look at what I promised during the campaign. There’s not a single thing that I said that I would do that I have not either done or tried to do. And if I have not gotten it done yet, I’m still trying to do it.”
The left needs a wake-up call. Of course we can have heated debate, but name-calling and silly calls for a primary challenge are ridiculous.
Liberals are attacking President Obama on many fronts regarding the tax cut deal. They don’t like the deal itself, and many are also alleging that it’s stupid politics – he should have held out for a better deal.
Andrew Sullivan has a different take, explaining how a fight with his liberal critics actually helps him. Also, the deal itself will likely stimulate the economy, and a better economy helps his re-election prospects. I agree with Andrew.
Democrat Mary Landrieu is one of the worst Senators in Congress, so many were probably surprised when she took a moralistic tone in going after President Obama in the tax compromise.
Extending the tax cuts for those making more than a million dollars a year is borderline immoral, Landrieu charged. “I’m going to argue forcefully for the nonsensicalness and the almost, you know, moral corruptness of that particular policy,” said Landrieu, walking into a meeting with Vice President Joe Biden and Senate Democrats. “This is beyond politics. This is about justice and doing what’s right.”
Landrieu was fuming about the deal. On her way into the meeting, she slammed the tax-cut extension as a needless giveaway, adding, “That’s all I have to say.” But it wasn’t. She emerged from the meeting a few moments later to continue prosecuting her case to reporters.
“It’s what I’m calling the Obama-McConnell plan. We’re going to borrow $46 billion from the poor, from the middle class, from businesses of all sizes basically to give a tax cut to families in America today, that despite the recession, are making over a million dollars. I mean, this is unprecedented. Unprecedented. I want to repeat that,” she said. Landrieu added, however, that she had yet to make a decision on the final package and was speaking strictly about the extension of tax cuts for the wealthy.
That’s right – she voted for the Bush tax cuts years ago and helped start us on the road to financial ruin, and now she’s citing morality?
Lawrence O’Donnell, however, wasn’t buying her bullshit, so he called her out on it on “The Last Word.”
President Obama and the Republicans have struck a deal on taxes and unemployment benefits. The question now is whether liberals like Nancy Pelosi will really try to kill the deal.
Here’s the most important fact that angry liberals are ignoring – President Obama wanted to have this fight BEFORE the elections. The House could have passed a tax cut for those below $250,000, and then dared the Republicans in the Senate to filibuster it. This would have been the ideal issue for a dramatic filibuster showdown and would have drawn clear lines between the parties heading into the election.
But the Democrats chickened out. Pelosi listened to terrified Dems who are afraid of their own shadow when it comes to taxes, and they punted until after the election.
It was a huge mistake on every front. None of us know how it would have played out, but it’s hard to imagine a scenario in November worse than the beat-down they received.
Now these liberal Dems have the nerve to criticize Obama for cutting a deal, when it’s clear he has no choice but to strike a deal if he wants unemployment benefits extended and possible votes on START and Don’t Ask Don’t Tell. The criticism is totally ridiculous.