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Sun Dec 2, 2012, 10:13 PM

NYT: Pushing GOP to Negotiate, Obama Ends Giving In

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/03/us/politics/pushing-gop-to-negotiate-obama-ends-giving-in.html?partner=rss&emc=rss&smid=tw-thecaucus

Mr. Obama, scarred by failed negotiations in his first term and emboldened by a clear if close election to a second, has emerged as a different kind of negotiator in the past week or two, sticking to the liberal line and frustrating Republicans on the other side of the bargaining table.

Disciplined and unyielding, he argues for raising taxes on the wealthy while offering nothing new to rein in spending and overhaul entitlement programs beyond what was on the table last year. Until Republicans offer their own new plan, Mr. Obama will not alter his. In effect, he is trying to leverage what he claims as an election mandate to force Republicans to take ownership of the difficult choices ahead.

His approach is born of painful experience. In his first four years in office, Mr. Obama has repeatedly offered what he considered compromises on stimulus spending, health care and deficit reduction to Republicans, who either rejected them as inadequate or pocketed them and insisted on more. Republicans argued that Mr. Obama never made serious efforts at compromise and instead lectured them about what they ought to want rather than listening to what they did want.


I, for one, am very glad to see the president being tougher. On the other hand, I am a little worried about this narrative developing about him overreaching. It's important that if we do go over the cliff, people blame Republicans. If the president is seen as the intransigent one that won't happen.

Also, I hope what they say at the end of the article is not true, about tax increases for the rich being the only thing he cares about. I think protecting the social safety net and making sure any reforms happen on our terms is equally important.

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Reply NYT: Pushing GOP to Negotiate, Obama Ends Giving In (Original post)
democrattotheend Dec 2012 OP
ProSense Dec 2012 #1
democrattotheend Dec 2012 #2
ProSense Dec 2012 #3
Wharrisg Dec 2012 #4
democrattotheend Dec 2012 #5

Response to democrattotheend (Original post)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 10:23 PM

1. Why would you

"Also, I hope what they say at the end of the article is not true, about tax increases for the rich being the only thing he cares about. "

...think that's true? Here is the quote:

“He only cares about one detail: raising rates on the top two brackets,” said Tony Fratto, a former White House and Treasury Department official under Mr. Bush. “Everything else is secondary. That’s why if that is going to happen, it will be last if Republicans can hold out. I think it’s pretty clear Obama will sacrifice just about anything to get that. It’s the only win for him.”


Here's another NYT piece:

Republicans Would Rather Laugh Than Bargain...But once the laughter dies down
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021908853

This is good too:

Krugman: What Defines A Serious Deficit Proposal?
http://www.democraticunderground.com/10021914963

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Response to ProSense (Reply #1)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 10:30 PM

2. I don't think it is true, per se

But I have seen him toe the hard line on that more than on benefit cuts. I know he was willing to negotiate on raising the Medicare eligibility age back in 2011 when he had a gun to his head and I forgive him for that, but I would feel a lot better if he said now that he doesn't support doing that.

I am probably more conservative than some on here when it comes to entitlements/earned benefits. I am young and want to make sure these programs will be around when I retire, or at least when my parents retire. But raising the eligibility age for Medicare is a bad idea that won't save money in the aggregate and will cause a lot more pain for seniors than it helps keep Medicare solvent.

If that is the price we have to pay to get the tax rates on the top 2% raised I am not sure it's worth it.

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Response to democrattotheend (Reply #2)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 10:35 PM

3. You're worried about something that isn't in the President's proposal?

I am probably more conservative than some on here when it comes to entitlements/earned benefits. I am young and want to make sure these programs will be around when I retire, or at least when my parents retire. But raising the eligibility age for Medicare is a bad idea that won't save money in the aggregate and will cause a lot more pain for seniors than it helps keep Medicare solvent.

Republicans are the ones pushing this. Read Krugman's piece.

You also state in the OP:

"On the other hand, I am a little worried about this narrative developing about him overreaching. It's important that if we do go over the cliff, people blame Republicans. If the president is seen as the intransigent one that won't happen."

How is the President "overreaching," and why would he be seen as "intransigent" for sticking to his proposal and rejecting Republicans's attempt to cuts Medicare and Social Security benefits?

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Response to democrattotheend (Original post)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 10:49 PM

4. Only half way there

I agree for the most part and am more encouraged by President Obamas' effort to reach across and get all parties to step back and do what's right for the country instead of the talking points we have listened to for too many years. With that said however, we did not get to this debt crisis by simply not taxing enough. Yes, I understand that taxing more actual job creators isn't technically a good idea in a economic recession/recovery but the breaks they have been able to get outnumber the breaks that those less fortunate have had by an incredible margin. Increasing their rates WILL help. To say that is all that we need to do though is severely inaccurate. Tax increases is just the first step. Over spending and mismanaging OUR money by both parties is the main contribution to 16 trillion deficit. And pointing out which party was more reckless doesn't help any of us one bit. They need to sit down, swallow pride and politics. Hammer out a strong reform plan and tax code. Obama did the right thing not 24hours after winning reelection when he stated the severity of our futures and the necessity of working with both parties. I have been even more surprised up until Thursday at John Boehners' willingness to concede they had to forget politics as usual and meet the other party at-least half way. He only seemed to turn away when it was being reported that there would be no spending cuts. Like him or hate him, he can bring more conservatives to the table than any other republican I can think of. If "some" spending cuts are put back on the table, I think that will bring everyone back to the table. Bottom line is both sides have to waiver somewhat or this country WILL fall. Cut some of the unnecessary spending that adds to our debt, and start using taxes to begin bringing it down. One or the other only slows the bleeding. Both seems like a legitimate solution to avert this crisis and prevent us from becoming Greece.

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Response to Wharrisg (Reply #4)

Sun Dec 2, 2012, 11:55 PM

5. Welcome to DU

And I agree with most of what you are saying, but it depends what spending is cut. Even some Republicans and Pentagon officials agree that there is a lot of waste in the Pentagon budget that could be cut, so that would be my starting place.

I would also be more than happy to see cuts to subsidies for big agribusiness.

I am wary of more cuts to Medicare since the ACA already cut provider rates, and if those are cut too much it will be too difficult for beneficiaries to find good doctors who take Medicare.

You seem like a reasonable person, and I don't disagree with you for the most part. But I should warn you that especially since this is your first post, you may get a hostile reception from some DUers for your views. But I agree with you - both parties have run up a debt that is too high and that my generation and those after me will be paying off. I was mad as hell during the Bush years at the way they borrowed and spent to pay for wars and tax cuts for the rich. I am not angered by Obama running up the deficit for stimulus spending because I think it's necessary, but it does bother me to see some on here and Kos saying the debt doesn't matter, because it does, especially to people my age and younger who will be paying it off with interest.

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