The case against cooperation
The worst thing about this whole debate: Obama got elected not once, but twice by saying he was going to raise taxes on the super rich. Nobody in the GOP got elected by saying that they were going to cut Medicare or home mortgage deductions, but that’s the corner this fiscal cliff debate puts them in.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s attempt to reform the filibuster probably won’t go as far as the Senate needs to end gridlock, but it could have one positive impact: making bipartisan cooperation on a solution to the so-called ‘fiscal cliff’ impossible, according to Mitch McConnell.
‘We have huge issues before us here at the end of the year, much of which will probably carry over into next year,’ McConnell said in a debate with Reid Tuesday. ‘It’s a time that we ought to building collegiality and relationships and not making incendiary moves that are damaging to the institution and could have serious ramifications on our ability to work together here at the end of the year.’
I think that’s good news.
I’m not going to go over a political cliff over David Plouffe’s remarks about the fiscal cliff. As has been widely reported, Plouffe told a college crowd earlier this month that the president was prepared to disappoint the left by making a ‘grand bargain.’
‘Democrats are going to have to do some tough things on spending and entitlements that means that they’ll criticized on by their left,’ Plouffe insisted. The White House knows, he added, that it must ‘carefully’ address the ‘chief drivers of our deficit’: Medicare and Medicaid. Plouffe even suggested the president might be open to lowering tax rates on the wealthy. ‘What we also want to do is engage in a process of tax reform that would ultimately produce lower rates, even potentially for the wealthiest,’ he said.