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Sat Jan 19, 2013, 01:21 PM

Is the Republican Party Obama’s fault?



http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/01/18/is-the-republican-party-obamas-fault/

Is the Republican Party Obama’s fault?

Posted by Ezra Klein on January 18, 2013 at 2:07 pm

snip//

The logic here is weirdly impeccable. The Republican Party’s dilemma is that House Republicans keeps taking all kinds of unreasonable and unpopular positions. If Obama weren’t president, the House Republicans wouldn’t be taking so many unreasonable and unpopular positions. But since Obama is president, and since he does need to work with House Republicans, he is highlighting their unreasonable and unpopular opinions in a bid to make them change their minds, which is making House Republicans look even worse. And so it’s ultimately Obama’s fault that House Republicans are, say, threatening to breach the debt ceiling if they don’t get their way on spending cuts. After all, if Mitt Romney had won the election, the debt ceiling wouldn’t even be a question!

snip//

So the White House’s plan, then, is to force Republicans to be unreasonable by being reasonable and taking the positions Obama has espoused all along, including in the 2012 campaign. Gerson argues that this is a devious win-win for the president: “If {Republicans} agree, their caucus is fractured (again). And if they refuse (which they are likely to do), {Obama can} paint them as obstructionists and extremists who are willing to destroy the economy/the nation’s credit rating/the military for their own ideological purposes.”

snip//

There’s an Occam’s Razor problem with all these columns: Perhaps the White House is hewing to the popular, reasonable positions it took in the 2012 campaign because, well, those are its positions. If the Republican Party can’t either agree to them or come up with popular, reasonable positions of its own, the problem here might be located inside the Republican Party rather than at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

The good news is that the grown-ups in the Republican Party are trying.
This week’s retreat seems mostly about the House Republican leadership talking their members down from the ledge,as unnecessary as that particular project should be. Rep. Paul Ryan is interceding in a strange, but mostly helpful, way in arguing that Republicans should see the debt limit as a moment for messaging rather than extortion. Charles Krauthammer is warning, ”if you try to govern from one house — e.g., force spending cuts with cliffhanging brinkmanship — you lose. You not only don’t get the cuts. You get the blame for rattled markets and economic uncertainty. You get humiliated by having to cave in the end. And you get opinion polls ranking you below head lice and colonoscopies in popularity.” A lot of Republicans from all different sectors of the party are signaling that the GOP would be wise to stay away from the debt ceiling.

In the end, the Republican Party is going to need to fix itself, and that’s going to require a painful process in which more sensible voices stand up to the more extreme elements of the coalition. It is getting very far into cult-of-the-presidency thinking to say the solution instead lies in the relatively fixed policy proposals of a Democratic executive.

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Reply Is the Republican Party Obama’s fault? (Original post)
babylonsister Jan 2013 OP
Angry Dragon Jan 2013 #1
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #2
Squinch Jan 2013 #3
Enrique Jan 2013 #4
Jamaal510 Jan 2013 #5
catbyte Jan 2013 #6
GeorgeGist Jan 2013 #7

Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 01:29 PM

1. the republicans are fully responsible for their idiotic positions

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 01:30 PM

2. Yes--he won't go along with teh crazy, so they become even more irrational.

He is tearing this country apart with his...reasonable positions.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 01:32 PM

3. I am laughing like Snidely Whiplash.



This is very beautiful.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 01:43 PM

4. even the Koch Brothers say the debt ceiling must be raised

that the economy can't risk default.

How crazy do you have to be when the Koch Brothers are telling you to calm down.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 01:44 PM

5. They're even blaming Obama for their own party's disarray!

I guess it will never occur to them that their policies are toxic and widely unpopular. When are Republicans ever going to get back to that "personal responsibility" they affectionately tout so much?

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 02:14 PM

6. LOL. Obama=smarter Black man than them and it doesn't compute in their

Neanderthal brains. It drove them over the edge having to defer to a non-White. The Republicans in a nut shell.

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Response to babylonsister (Original post)

Sat Jan 19, 2013, 03:32 PM

7. Republican colonoscopy.

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