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Randy Johnson

Perfect picture. That dumb smile describes perfectly the fake sincerity so many of the GOP flashes these days. As I've said before, I've been a Republican since I was old enough to register(I'll be sixty-four later this year) and become increasingly embarrassed at the type of people who supposedly represent our interests. To me anyway, their only interests are their own.


Come now Harry Reid has no Blame? The President has no Blame?


and if George Bush would have said these things Leftees would have been all over him

Jeff Mariotte

Chris, the topic are the words that came out of Speaker Boehner's mouth. You think Harry Reid or the president are to blame for those?

If you want to talk about the larger issue of the sequester--which was not the topic of the post--then no, those other gentlemen do not share the blame.

The sequester was never meant to happen. It was supposed to be such a terrible idea that Democrats and Republicans would all refuse to let it come to pass. It was put into place in 2011 after the Republicans, single-handedly, decided to throw the American economy (and likely the global economy) at risk by refusing, for the first time in history, to raise the debt ceiling. As part of the deal they came up with the "super-committee," which Jon Kyl was largely responsible for killing. There were also cuts of $1.2 trillion, with no corresponding revenue increase. In December 2012, with the looming expiration of the Bush tax cuts and the "fiscal cliff," another deal was reached, with $600 billion--all new revenue, no new cuts. Score so far: cuts $12 trillion, revenue $600 billion.

Now, with yet another "crisis" manufactured not by any external events but by the Republican party's series of made-up crises, it seems the reasonable thing to do is a balanced approach that includes some cuts and some revenue. The president has proposed such deals. So have Democrats in the House and Senate. But Boehner--even today after the White House meeting with the president and other congressional leaders, refuses to bring anything to the floor for a vote if it has a penny of revenue. He said today, "Let's make it clear, the president got his tax hike on January 1st. The discussion about revenue, in my view, is over."

The Democrats, by contrast, have NOT said, "The Speaker got his $1.2 trillion in cuts back in 2011, so the discussion about cuts is over." Instead, all along, they've been saying, "We don't want more cuts, but we'll live with them as long as there's also some revenue."

So, no Reid and Obama don't share the blame for this situation. This is John Boehner's doing (and the Republicans in the Senate who yesterday filibustered a Senate bill that offered a compromise approach).

One side has been trying hard to compromise--even though it's a compromise over a "crisis" that didn't have to happen and should have been avoided--and the other side refuses to compromise. How is it the fault of both sides? It's not.

Jeff Mariotte

George Bush said far stupider things every day of his presidency, and mostly got a pass for it.

Anyway, Obama is just demonstrating his nerd cred--most people would listen to the "Jedi mind-meld" and think he's mixing up Star Trek and Star Wars. Obama is offering a secret tribute to J.J. Abrams, who directed the last two Star Trek movies and will direct the first new Star Wars movie. Once again, he's ahead of the rest of us.




First My representative in the House of Representatives is The Honorable Ron Barber. I did not vote for him and I do not agree with him on most subjects.
I do not like Mr. Boehner. He was elected Speaker the House by his caucus, the Republicans. I am a registered Republican
The 2.7 Trillion number is being fact checked all over the place. Some are calling it a fabrication. That is not my point. I am incredulous that people do not hold the President and the Democratic majority accountable The Sequester bill passed the House, passed the Senate and the President signed it into law. Bills do not carry over but laws do. The President acts now like he did not sign the bill into law. It is like he signed a contract for a house and he does not want to make payments. If it was such a bad bill why did he sign it?
If he had one ounce of courage he would have made a stand.
The President was elected to the Senate in 2006. Oh By the way he was part of a sweep that brought Mr. Reid and Mr. Pelosi into power. In 2008, he was elected and oh by the way the Democrats had an absolute majority and they probably could have passed one of the most expensive items in history. We will find out in the next few years the truth about that.
They could have...nobody could have stopped them repealed the Bush tax cuts during that 2 years.
But this is a President who likes to whine, blame others, and spend money.
Respect is something that is earned as a leader.
In do not have respect for Mr.Mr. Boehner. I have no respect at all for Harry Reid. No Budget in over a 1000 days. I do have respect for the Honorable Ron Barber. He took a bullet while doing his job serving others. I do not have to agree with. But he will always have my respect.
Now for the President. I will be critical of him but I have respect for the office he has. He is my President. I do not agree with him on about 99 percent of the issues. I want to say that he has the attributes of a great leader. I think he does not. I think management by crisis which has been the mode of government for his first term and now is setting the tone of his second casts him the ranks of the mediocre presidents. Not as bad as George W Bush (Come on take your shots it has been 5 years.)

Jeff Mariotte

Your history is a bit off. The constant crises that have come up during the Obama administration--the debt ceiling crisis, the fiscal cliff, the various potential shutdowns, and now the sequester, have all been created by House Republicans. They have had the power to obstruct congressional action, and they have used that power.

In 2011, Obama and Boehner agreed in principle on a "Grand Bargain" of spending cuts and revenue increases, and Eric Cantor came along (he proudly admits this) and talked Boehner into backing out of the bargain. As a result of that, we got the super-committee and the potential sequester if the super-committee didn't work. Obama couldn't refuse to sign that bill--he is a man of his word, and he gave his word that he would support that compromise because he wanted the debt ceiling raised. Remember, just the self-created Republican debt crisis affected our country's credit rating and killed job growth for the summer. The sequester was meant to be so awful that it would never be allowed to happen. But Republicans--and only Republicans--have refused to compromise AT ALL. They announced that they would not compromise, that they would only bring a bill to the House floor if it had everything they wanted and nothing anybody else wanted. There is no realistic interpretation of this situation that makes the Democrats or the president responsible for the sequester. A simple compromise would have prevented it. Only one party refused to compromise.

On your other history--during the first two years of Obama's first term, he had a Democratic supermajority in the Senate for about 4 months. There were sick Democrats (Kennedy and Byrd) who were out a lot. Al Franken wasn't seated until July 7, 2009. Kennedy died August 25, 2009. In between those events (if you count Lieberman and Sanders, who were not officially Democrats but usually voted with them) Democrats had 60 votes, but only theoretically, because for most of that time Kennedy's brain cancer prevented him from serving. And there were many conservative Democrats who voted with the Republicans nearly as often as with Democrats. So it's frankly nonsensical to say Obama could have done anything he wanted during that period.

But even if he could have, how could he have predicted that in 2011, the Republicans would decide, for the first time in American history, to call into question the willingness of the American government to pay bills it had already committed to?

If you don't think this president has courage, then I'm sad for you, because you're letting ideology get in the way of reality. This president has demonstrated courage in many ways--standing up to his military "experts" who didn't want him to order the SEAL raid against bin Laden, standing up for some kind of gun safety after Newtown, standing up for American manufacturing jobs and the auto industry that others wanted to let fall apart...

The argument that the Senate hasn't passed a budget is nonsense, too. They haven't passed a "budget resolution." Budget resolutions do not have the force of law. They do adopt appropriations bills, as necessary, and those are law. A budget is just a roadmap, but it's essentially meaningless--it's the appropriations bills that actually determine federal spending.

And spending money? Again, you're letting your ideology get in the way. Yes, the government has had to spend money to bring us out of recession--and it's working. Manufacturing is up. Jobs are up. The stock market is up. Housing is up. Do you understand what direction the deficit is going? The deficit has been shrinking year after year that he's been in office. The economy is going up and the deficit is going down. All that spending--which started under Bush, and went up at a much steeper pace under Bush--was a good thing. Now he has agreed to huge spending cuts (and been forced into more thanks to Republican-manufactured crises), and spending growth has slowed considerably.

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