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Democrats’ Brilliant Incrementalism

Republicans in the Senate wimped out on New Year’s Eve.
All but 5 GOP Senators voted for the Biden/McConnell fiscal cliff legislation that, according to the Congressional Budget Office, raises $41 in taxes for every $1 in spending cuts. Why would they do that?
According to Senator John Cornyn, “I voted for this bill because it prevents a huge tax increase on 99 percent of all Texans and Americans.” He continues, “Nonetheless, I am dismayed at the lack of seriousness by the President on dealing with the core issues of our fiscal problems.”
Now we are all dismayed.
Is something really better than nothing? Not in this case.
This stop-gap measure will also increase the deficit by $4 trillion.
From Senator Hutchison, “It is imperative that the new Congress begin work as soon as possible to get government spending and our national debt under control.”
My question for both Texas Senators is this: Why would the Democrats feel the need to cut spending when Republicans agree to raise taxes with no meaningful spending cuts?
This is a lose/lose for Republicans. In order to avoid tax increases, Republicans voted to raise taxes.
At least Republicans could have voted “nay” and held a press conference touting the fact that they refused to vote for higher taxes, bigger government and an exploding deficit.
(Thanks to Senators Marco Rubio, Chuck Grassley, Mike Lee, Rand Paul, and Richard Shelby for voting against this bill.)
The President has won another round. What’s worse, presumably the next negotiations will begin from this new point of increased taxation. In order to get real spending cuts will Republicans agree to raise taxes even more? At some point there has to be a line in the sand.
There is a problem among Republicans; they lack courage. Yes, they will be blamed for anything and everything that goes wrong. That is not the point. The point is to force Democrats to come to the table and actually address the budget crisis.
You have to hand it to Obama; he outmaneuvers Republicans at every turn. By incrementally raising taxes, incrementally raising spending, ignoring Republicans entirely, he effectively advances the liberal agenda.
It would have been wiser to allow the automatic spending cuts and tax increases to take effect; at least there were spending cuts in that deal. Why do we help the Democrats? They will blame Republicans regardless; they have the media helping them.
What will the House Republicans do? Somewhere Boehner is smoking a cigarette and crying.

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