Update: Three Republican writers disagree with our analysis as to what Republicans should do regarding the debt ceiling and fighting Barack Obama. They are Peter Wehner of Commentary, Ross Douthat of the New York Times, and Matt Lewis of DailyCaller. The comments at DailyCaller agree with us. Example 1:
“The GOP cannot avoid this fight. If it caves the Republican base will be in full rebellion and it won’t be just conservatives wondering what is the purpose of an opposition party that never opposes effectively.”
“The Republican Party is going to have to stand up for something, sometime. If not now, when?”
Is it really possible that we might have some genuine “news” to report? Is it really possible that the “news” is “good” news? Shocking, but true.
When last we published we tried to get the point across that the only question that matters, and it is a question that remains unanswered, is “Will Republicans fight?” We made the case that strategically speaking NOW is the most opportune time for Republicans to challenge Barack Obama on issue after issue they say they care about.
We did not, in our previous article, invoke that bit of brilliant Bill Clintonism that goes like this: “Better to be strong and wrong than weak and right.” Smart Republicans should remember that Clintonism and take it to heart without us having to elaborate on why that is such a smart political strategy. No, in our last article we did not provide that bit of advice to Republicans. Instead we focused on why now, when the next elections are furthest away, is the time to fight.
Last Thursday, Donald Trump on Sean Hannity echoed much of what we wrote and he too advised Republicans not to worry about being blamed (for whatever) because they will be blamed (by Big Media) for anything and everything anyway. Trump also reminded Republicans that news cycles change so frequently that by the time the 2014 elections come up the fights of early 2013 will be long forgotten or put into context by the public.
We suspect that in 2014 the issue central to elections and the anger of the public will be the abomination called ObamaCare. It’s not just the sticker shock that is already bending the cost curve way upwards that will enrage. As we wrote at the time, the U.S. government as a thug enforcer, Al Capone-Frank Nitti style, for Big Insurance is going to infuriate the public. Big Insurance is already asking the U.S. government to thug up more customers for them (“That’s why some insurers want HHS to give them more sticks.” “The health insurers have a vested interest in asking for the extra measures, of course. They want as many customers as possible — which is one of the reasons they pushed for the individual mandate in the first place.”)
Yup, in 2014 the health scam abomination called ObamaCare and its failures will be the issue. But that changed issue landscape is not why Republicans should stiffen their spines and fight Barack Obama now.
As we pointed out previously, Republicans in the very bad low point election year of 2012, won 219 seats in the House of Representatives from congressional districts that Mitt Romney won. Control of the House requires 218 votes. Do we really have to connect the dots and bludgeon the heads of Republican “leaders” with this very obvious point? Now is the time to fight guys. Now is when you have the least to lose because the elections are so far away.
Now is the time to fight because the bigger the fight on fiscal issues that highlight Obama economic irresponsibility and lack of job creating plans the less damage Barack Obama can do in other arenas of American life.
Today, instead of talking about jobs and economic plans to grow the American economy we heard some additional stupidity and distractions from irresponsible Obama: I’ll “vigorously” pursue a “meaningful” assault-weapons ban. Obama wants to distract the DailyKooks crowd and the American public with more nonsense instead of addressing how we get out of the economic mess we are in. ABC and National Journal are asking “why Obama is doing this” when the answer is that Obama the flim-flam man understands that he must distract attention from the economy and the looming disaster which is ObamaCare with new flim-flams.
Now, what about that “good” news we wrote about up top? It’s not about the open thread: final Obama presser of first term being over. It’s not about Obama forced to open the binders full of women who are willing to work at lower pay than men in the Obama big house.
No, remember when we called the cooked Susan Rice nomination for Secretary of State “the first clear domestic policy defeat for Obama post election“? That devoured Rice victory came about because opponents fought, not sat back and whined, fought.
Now it might be possible (we’re from Missouri on this and refuse to believe it until we see it) that something along the lines of a fight might be taking shape:
“House Republicans are seriously entertaining dramatic steps, including default or shutting down the government, to force President Barack Obama to finally cut spending by the end of March.
The idea of allowing the country to default by refusing to increase the debt limit is getting more widespread and serious traction among House Republicans than people realize, though GOP leaders think shutting down the government is the much more likely outcome of the spending fights this winter.
“I think it is possible that we would shut down the government to make sure President Obama understands that we’re serious,” House Republican Conference Chairwoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington state told us. “We always talk about whether or not we’re going to kick the can down the road. I think the mood is that we’ve come to the end of the road.” [snip]
To the vast majority of House Republicans, it is far riskier long term to pile up new debt than it is to test the market and economic reaction of default or closing down the government.
GOP officials said more than half of their members are prepared to allow default unless Obama agrees to dramatic cuts he has repeatedly said he opposes. Many more members, including some party leaders, are prepared to shut down the government to make their point. House Speaker John Boehner “may need a shutdown just to get it out of their system,” said a top GOP leadership adviser. “We might need to do that for member-management purposes — so they have an endgame and can show their constituents they’re fighting.” [snip]
“No one wants to default, but we are not going to continue to give the president a limitless credit card.”
It’s in many ways a ploy of the Republican “leadership”. The Republican leadership wants a sham “fight” to “show their constituents they’re fighting” then they will turn around and betray the very constituents that sent a Republican majority to the lower house of congress.
But even with these conniving liars and hypocrites there are roadblocks to implement their schemes:
“To pacify conservatives, he made two promises to his members that will greatly restrict his ability to craft a compromise in the spending fights ahead. The first promise was to bring to the floor only legislation a majority of his members support and do it through the committee process. The second was to increase the debt limit only in exchange for a dollar-for-dollar decrease in spending in the time period covered by that debt increase. [snip]
They are willing to take that risk because they believe the future consequences of more spending are more severe.
If Republicans really believe what they are saying, or rather, if Republican “leaders” really believe what they are saying then they should stand on principle and do what their constituents sent them to Washington to do.
Instead of calling Barack Obama a nice guy Republicans should fight Obama and speak the truth. Today that somewhat began to happen. Some Republicans/conservatives who have been advocating capitulation today reminded their public of the Obama lies and deceits when it comes to the debt ceiling. Obama ’06: Raising the debt ceiling means America can’t pay its bills; Obama ’13: Not raising the debt ceiling means America can’t pay its bills.
These days it sometimes seems like the only Republican leader fighting is combat veteran of World War II George H.W. Bush. Today H.W. left the hospital – which shows that refusing to die when Big Media declares you dead, near dead, or about to die, is a smart strategy.
If Republicans believe what they say, then they should fight for what they believe in. The more resistance to Obama on the debt ceiling and other financial issues the less damage Obama can do in other areas.
Republican “leaders” should get a clue from 41 and 42. The time to fight is now. It’s fight or die.