EDITOR OF REDSTATE
But How Does Your Hand Improve?
The Kristol fans want to know how our hand improves if we reject the Boehner plan. First, it is worth pointing out what Bill Kristol noted back at the first part of July:
“It sounds as if it’s heading towards a deal,” Kristol said. “It’s not a deal that I’m going to like I suspect, and think I it’s going to be a bad deal for conservatives and Republicans but I think they’re intimidated,” Kristol said. “The president has been running around talking about corporate jets and the rich, and how the sky is going to fall unless Republicans cave. And I think they’re getting ready to cave in a pretty big way on Sunday.”
Basing it on what Republicans leaders have said publicly, Kristol forecast that defense spending cuts, tax increases and other cuts would be dressed up to be more than they really are in the end. And that would lead to a conservative revolt against Republicans.
“So great, we have a Republican House, and they are going to agree to the huge defense cuts, tax increases, phony spending cuts and increased debt,” Kristol said. “I think there will be a huge rebellion among conservatives in the country if Republicans sign on to this deal.”
That’s pretty much what we’re going to get. And it is going to come in the form of a super committee. If nothing else, holding out for scrapping the super committee to avoid massive tax hikes is a better plan.
I dare say that suddenly Boehner could get more support if he scrapped the super committee now.
But more so, good policy is good politics. This Boehner plan is terrible policy — made more so by the fact that it is the third GOP plan to no Democrat plans and the GOP is continuing to compromise with itself instead of the Democrats.
Lastly, it is not for these outside groups to govern. It’s for them to say what is and is not conservative — to point to what the right thing is and let the elected guys decide how far away from true north to drift. When the GOP deviates from conservatism to lock in high growth rates of government, conservatism loses. And that is exactly what the Republicans are doing. Boehner’s plan presumes the size and scope of the federal government will not go back to historic norms — norms that existed until Barack Obama became President.
Yes, I think the deal will improve. I think the deal will improve even if the only improvement is dropping the super committee. But more so, I think the GOP is being driven by fear and until they overcome that fear they will be in no position to negotiate with the Democrats. Their first step, however, is to stop negotiating with themselves. After all, as Kristol and others are so readily willing to point out — the GOP only controls one house of one branch of the federal government.