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Report: Some Dems would rather go over fiscal cliff than compromise on “balanced approach”
Hot Air ^ | November 16, 2012 | Allahpundit

Posted on 11/17/2012 11:05:04 AM PST by Bratch

Everyone was chummy and hopeful about a deal at the White House today, but if you’re surprised to hear that some Democrats are intent on driving a very hard bargain, you must have missed the polling data last night. They promised their base a tax hike on the rich and they can make it happen by doing nothing, with voters primed to blame the GOP for the economic fallout. Under those circumstances, why not go cliff-diving?

[The Gang of Six] reconvened on Tuesday, but the election results presented a new set of problems. Republican officials familiar with the talks say Democrats dug in on demands for tax revenue that Republicans are not willing to meet. Democratic aides say Republicans who had spoken abstractly about the need for more revenues are balking at the specifics.

“Things change. It’s not just a matter of the numbers changing, and they do,” Mr. Durbin said of shifting deficit projections, revenue forecasts and spending totals. “It’s also a matter of the political environment, and the landscape changing.”

Democrats freely admit they have shifted their stance from the defensive crouch of the summer of 2011, when they signed on to a budget deal that cut $1 trillion in spending with no tax increases, to now, when they believe the voters have given them a mandate to raise taxes on the affluent…

Both sides insist they want a deal before January, but a rising chorus of voices, especially Democrats, say they would rather go over the cliff than accept a deal that raised too few taxes while extracting too many cuts, especially to Medicare and Medicaid.

That’s the state of entitlement reform in America 2012, two years after a Republican landslide and a VP nomination for Paul Ryan. Here’s the question: How many Republicans would also prefer to go over the fiscal cliff (briefly), not because it’ll help them get what they want but because it’ll arguably make things politically easier for them to let Democrats get what they want? What I mean is, if Republicans make a deal now to raise taxes on the rich in exchange for deep spending cuts — even if they insist on limiting the rate hikes to millionaires only — they’ll be hammered by the conservative base for selling out. But if they go over the cliff and let the Bush tax cuts lapse, then agree with Obama to extend the old, lower rates for the middle class only, they can claim that (a) they didn’t blink under the pressure of the deadline bearing down on them and (b) technically speaking, they’re not responsible for the new, higher tax rates on the rich. In this post-cliff scenario, the new tax hike on the wealthy happens automatically, without any Republicans voting for it; the only vote Republicans would take would be to lower taxes, albeit only on the middle class. In practice, you’re getting the same outcome as you would if they made a deal now to reinstate the Clinton-era rates for high earners (plus, er, the initial fiscal shockwave from going over the cliff and the chaos afterward in trying to apply the lower middle-class rates retroactively), but in theory it’d be easier to sell politically because the House GOP would have avoided casting any votes affirmatively for new taxes.

Is that sort of posturing valuable enough to them to warrant going over the cliff, or is it just too risky given the likelihood of a new cliff-driven recession and the blame Republicans might get when it happens?

Oh, in case you’re wondering, here’s Boehner’s plan to make sure the government remains disciplined in tightening its belt if a deal is reached:

According to a Boehner aide, the speaker suggested that the leaders agree on long-term revenue targets for tax reform and spending targets for entitlement reform, as well as enforcement mechanisms that would kick in if Congress fails to act on either next year.

Sounds like part of the solution to the bind that the sequester’s left them in is … another sequester.


TOPICS: Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: boehner; rinos; sellout; sequestration

1 posted on 11/17/2012 11:05:10 AM PST by Bratch
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To: Bratch

if a “compromise” means any higher taxes, there are some of us OTHER people out here who say, go over the damned “cliff, lower taxes substantially, and cut the amazingly-wasteful spending (much of which appears to actually be outright theft anyway)


2 posted on 11/17/2012 11:07:17 AM PST by faithhopecharity
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To: Bratch

Hunch: Obama doesn’t want a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff

posted at 8:31 am on November 17, 2012 by Jazz Shaw

Everyone came away from the initial summit meeting between Obama, Boehner and Reid with big smiles and a public air of confidence that Friday’s kumbaya moment would lead to The Big Deal. Call me a cynic, but I’m still not buying it. Yesterday, AP touched on a part of this story, tossing out some ideas about how everyone – particularly Democrats – might walk away with relatively clean hands if no deal is reached on the fiscal cliff this year. It’s all true, but for some of us there’s a bit more to the story. The Democrats, for their part, seem to have plenty to gain and not much to lose.

Some Democrats are pushing an unorthodox idea for coping with the “fiscal cliff”: Let the government go over, temporarily at least, to give their party more bargaining leverage for changes later on.

The idea has plenty of skeptics, and the White House regards it frostily. But it illustrates the wide range of early negotiating positions being staked out by Republicans and Democrats as lawmakers gathered Tuesday for their first post-election talks on how to avoid the looming package of steep tax hikes and program cuts.

But why would this work for Barack Obama? Because – as we learned the hard way on election day – he can watch the polls with the best of them. And if this train goes off the rails he has reason to believe that he won’t be left holding the bag.

A new poll by Hart Research’s Geoff Garin, conducted for Americans for Tax Fairness — a group that wants the Bush-era tax cuts to end for those who earn more than $250,000 — found that a majority of voters cited changing the tax system as a key factor in their votes, and that the majority broke for President Barack Obama.

The survey also found that Democrats have changed the landscape on an issue that has eluded them for years — taxes. The survey found that most want the Bush-era cuts on top earners to expire, but that Republicans will shoulder blame if all of the Bush cuts, including those on the middle class, expire because a deal can’t be reached.

Basically, this works out to a win-win for Obama. Yes, he could look like the great peacemaker and try to strike some sort of grand bargain with Boehner. And if he did, he would likely get some of what he and the Democratic majority want in exchange for taking a slightly less than maximum raise on taxes for the most wealthy. But why?

If he takes a very hard line and forces the showdown to a collapse in discussions, several potentially positive (for him) results are baked into the cake. He can claim that Republicans refused a “balanced approach” and it’s their fault that everyone’s taxes went up. He then has the Democrats force a vote on a bill to only lower taxes on the middle class and the poor and just dares the GOP to vote against it. (They won’t.) At this point he has the tax / revenue increase he promised without giving up a single thing. Now the negotiations start anew to talk about “spending cuts” but the GOP’s major bargaining chip is gone. Obama gets to put up a far more shallow version of cuts, and if the Republicans don’t like it, they can choose to reject the deal and just let the deficit continue to skyrocket.

What Republican in their right mind could go for this? Perhaps more than we might think.

The Republican Party took the rap for the debt ceiling and is under suspicion for the fiscal cliff. A new Washington Post-Pew Research poll has 53 percent of Americans ready to blame Republicans if America actually goes over the edge and only 29 percent planning to point fingers at President Barack Obama.

Understanding this, thoughtful Republicans are feeling freer to risk the tea partiers’ wrath and cooperate with Democrats. The teams may disagree on much, but at least they’re now playing in the same ballpark.

How does that work? Fairly simple. Just as I’ve been saying since earlier this year, if you needed congressional action to raise taxes it would never happen. But in this case, to raise tax rates all you need is for Congress to do nothing. And when you need nothing done, there’s no better crack team than Congress. And once the taxes are up, even the GOP reps who have signed the Norquist pledge are free to sign a bill that lowers taxes… even if that doesn’t apply to the wealthy. They get to remain covered on their voting record in their home districts and blame the fallout on the Democrats.

Here’s the part where I reveal my secret strategy of how the GOP can thwart this plan and come out on top.

Hang on… there’s somebody at the door.


3 posted on 11/17/2012 11:09:11 AM PST by Bratch
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To: Bratch

Napoleon Bawlo


4 posted on 11/17/2012 11:09:23 AM PST by RckyRaCoCo (I prefer liberty with danger to peace with slavery, IXNAY THE TSA!)
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To: Bratch

Can we just push the Dems over the cliff instead?


5 posted on 11/17/2012 11:10:23 AM PST by tflabo
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To: Bratch

We have to accept that these people feel confided and imprisoned by freedom. They don’t want the responsibilities that come from having freedom. They feel it is a burden they want to get out from under, and that we are horrible people for imposing freedom upon them.

They want to be taken care of by nanny government. They are children. We are not going to make any inroads until we accept who they are.


6 posted on 11/17/2012 11:12:35 AM PST by Truth2012
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To: Bratch
Jan 1 will mark the day the US gets its highest tax rates in history. Between expiring cuts and new taxes it will be the single biggest tax increase in US history.

It hasn't gone into effect yet.

AND WE'RE ALREADY BEING TOLD IT'S NOT ENOUGH!!!!
7 posted on 11/17/2012 11:12:35 AM PST by Tzimisce (What do you do when every level and every branch of the government is corrupt and aligned against yo)
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To: Bratch

Sure they would. They know with the cooperation of the Pravda press that the blame for going over the cliff would be put on the Republicans.


8 posted on 11/17/2012 11:14:59 AM PST by TruthWillWin (The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other peoples money.)
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To: Tzimisce

something like we need 2Trillion in taxes...


9 posted on 11/17/2012 11:19:12 AM PST by markman46 (engage brain before using keyboard!!!)
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To: Bratch
"when they signed on to a budget deal that cut $1 trillion in spending with no tax increases, ....."

Help me out here. When did the Bolshevik/democraps agree to that? Did I miss something?

10 posted on 11/17/2012 11:21:05 AM PST by mosaicwolf (Strength and Honor)
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To: Bratch

Like some Union Thugs would rather kill the whole company rather than take an 8% pay cut and 25% ownership in the company?


11 posted on 11/17/2012 11:23:56 AM PST by null and void (America - Abducted by Aliens...)
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To: faithhopecharity

I am almost to the point of saying, America voted for this, let’s give it to ‘em. Then I think of the hurt those of us on the RIGHT side of history will end up enduring.


12 posted on 11/17/2012 11:27:12 AM PST by navymom1
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To: Tzimisce

I am tempted to go over the fiscal cliff. That is really what the Dems and the Prez want.


13 posted on 11/17/2012 11:35:05 AM PST by rcofdayton
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To: rcofdayton

Let them raise taxes, and let’s all join hands and jump off the cliff together, and then PLEASE let’s blame Obama and stop blaming Bush.


14 posted on 11/17/2012 11:46:02 AM PST by rovenstinez
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To: rcofdayton
I am tempted to go over the fiscal cliff. That is really what the Dems and the Prez want.

Like an addict will not even attempt to stop their addiction (spending) until they hit rock bottom. Lets go over the fiscal cliff and start a real recovery.

15 posted on 11/17/2012 12:01:24 PM PST by frogjerk (Obama Claus is coming to town!)
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To: Bratch

I am all for the gooing over the fiscal cliff, once we stop the 40 billion buck being printed every stinking month in qe3.

But as long as the Gov is printing money, I can’t expect anyone to confirm the goodness of going through hard times for the sake of the economy.


16 posted on 11/17/2012 12:12:58 PM PST by TomasUSMC ( FIGHT LIKE WW2, FINISH LIKE WW2. FIGHT LIKE NAM, FINISH LIKE NAM)
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To: TomasUSMC

Here’s an idea: Conservatives with jobs go in and ask for a new W-4 and change your deductions from whatever you have now (2,3,4,5) to (7,8,9)...that way no matter what they do, we can reduce our taxes. Then when the tax bill comes due IN April you add all your pets as dependants...Certainly the PETA people count their animals as dependants!


17 posted on 11/17/2012 12:21:17 PM PST by princess leah
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To: Bratch

And some GOP would be fine with going over the cliff as well.... LIKE ME.

Let it fail. Let it fall apart. Punish the obama voters. Give them all they voted for.


18 posted on 11/17/2012 12:23:58 PM PST by Sequoyah101
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To: Bratch

The Dems have all the Ads ready and the scripts prepared to issue to their minions for the endless TV programs ,so they can put ALL the blame on the GOP


19 posted on 11/17/2012 12:24:36 PM PST by molson209
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To: Bratch

I agree we should go over the cliff ASAP so that we can come out the other side while our country and it’s assets are still intact.

Of course you should be PRE prepared to survive during this period by having assets stashed where BIG BROTHER can’t get at them or even know about them.

The sooner we come out the other side of this crash, the more viable companies will still exist, roads and buildings (etc) will still pretty much intact - BUT - If we doddle and let the government and the bad boys start stripping everything just to pay the bills there will be little left and we will have to rebuild from near scratch.


20 posted on 11/17/2012 12:28:14 PM PST by No Fly Zone
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To: Bratch

ALL Dems - especially Obama - WANT to “go over a fiscal cliff.”

That is, traditionally, how a social revolution is fomented and absolute government power generated.

A hundred years after Lenin, our backward-looking president and his congress are seeking to model the nation after Russia in 1918.


21 posted on 11/17/2012 12:28:20 PM PST by Jack Hammer
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To: Bratch

The Dems have a fixation on tax increases for the “rich”. Their position makes little real difference financially, it is an ideological point on which they will not budge. They are holding the country hostage, and are ready to inflict damage to the US economy and our national security just to sate their sacrificial soak the rich fetish.

Firmly affix blame for the impasse, the overspending, and the created crisis, to the Democrats, walk them to the edge of the cliff, and throw them off.


22 posted on 11/17/2012 12:35:23 PM PST by Ray76
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To: Jack Hammer

All the pubs have to do is bring a bill to the floor that gives Bozo his taxes on the rich and leaves the rest of the current rates in place. The pubs all abstain from voting in the House and Senate and pin this one on the dims.


23 posted on 11/17/2012 12:35:38 PM PST by ChuckHam
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To: faithhopecharity

Then away we go! (We’re toast anyway.)


24 posted on 11/17/2012 12:42:39 PM PST by rashley (Rashley)
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To: Bratch

The media is now fixated on an apparently new feature dominating the economic landscape: a “fiscal cliff” from which the United States will fall in January 2013. It’s not because we will go over the cliff that will lead to America’s financial ruin, but because we won’t go over it. The real fiscal cliff comes when our creditors want their money back, and we don’t have it. The only way around this is to stop the presses, let interest rates go up, and they’re going to have to go way up, and let the chips fall where they may. QE3 can only take us so far and the Federal Reserve’s money printing will do so much destruction to the dollar through inflation, that we’ll see a currency collapse like never before. On the current trajectory the national debt will likely hit $20 trillion in a few years. If by that time interest rates were to return to some semblance of historic normalcy, say 5 per cent, interest payments on the debt would then run $1 trillion per year. This sum could represent almost 40 per cent of total federal revenues in 2012. In addition to making the debt service unmanageable, higher rates would depress economic activity, thereby slowing tax collection and requiring increased government spending. This would increase the budget deficits further, putting even more upward pressure on interest rates. Higher mortgage rates and increased unemployment will put renewed downward pressure on home prices, perhaps leading to another large wave of foreclosures. My guess is that losses on government insured mortgages alone could add several hundred billion more to annual budget deficits. When all of these factors are taken into account, I believe that annual budget deficits could quickly approach, and exceed, $3 trillion. All this could be in the cards if interest rates were to approach a modest five per cent.


25 posted on 11/17/2012 12:46:50 PM PST by wolfman
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To: Bratch

We went off that cliff a long time ago. Now we are trying to figure out if we want to land in a field of razor blades or a field of land mines.


26 posted on 11/17/2012 1:38:10 PM PST by Cyman
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To: Bratch

secession


27 posted on 11/17/2012 2:08:28 PM PST by Founding Father (The Pedophile moHAMmudd (PBUH---Pigblood be upon him))
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To: frogjerk; rcofdayton
Lets go over the fiscal cliff and start a real recovery.

Agreed. This whole 'fiscal cliff' business is what our Congress and President agreed to back in August 2011. The GOP House passed it. The Dem Senate passed it. And the Dem President signed it. Make them honor what they said they would do back then. I fear though that Boehner will cave and the Dems will continue spending as usual with no cuts.

28 posted on 11/17/2012 3:53:03 PM PST by Hoodat ("As for God, His way is perfect" - Psalm 18:30)
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To: Bratch

Obama wants to bring down this country. He is drooling over this happening. Communists know the best way to take over a country is when the people are pissed off.


29 posted on 11/17/2012 4:33:53 PM PST by CodeToad (Liberals are bloodsucking ticks. We need to light the matchstick to burn them off.)
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To: Bratch

Dems are bluffing, if the populace sees how little they are personally affected by across-the-board budget cuts then the Dems lose their power base.


30 posted on 11/17/2012 4:37:48 PM PST by waverna
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To: waverna
Don't be so sure.

Congressional Democrats: We're Fine Going Over The Fiscal Cliff and Plunging the Nation Into Recession

There are two possibilities here. Both may be true.

The Democrats may simply be posturing in order to wring a complete victory in negotiations. By threatening to take the country over the fiscal cliff, and seeming to mean it, they will force Republicans -- whose allegiance is to the nation, and not the progressive ideology -- to stop them by giving them everything they want.

The other possibility is that they're not just posturing and that they do mean it. Charles Krauthammer has been talking about this -- the Democrats know that to finance their ever growing welfare state they will have to tax the middle class. What better way to do it than to take us over the fiscal cliff (automatically raising income taxes on the middle class) and simply say "The Republicans did it, they wouldn't compromise?"

The other part of it, the automatic sequestration part, is likewise something they desire. Deep slashes to the military without having to vote for it? There are also cuts to Medicare, of course, but the Democrats are moving away from the old vote and besides, lots and lots of old people will continue voting for Democrats no matter how much they cut from Medicare (as they proved this last election).

And there's one more thing: We're going to have a recession, with the fiscal cliff or without it. It's better for Obama and the Democrats to have a recession that they can claim "was all because of Republicans" rather than one which is plainly owned by Obama.

All in all, the Democrats have arranged to win on all their spending and taxing objectives, and all they have to do is nothing. They just need to claim "We tried to compromise but the Republicans wouldn't let us compromise with them."

So which is it? Posturing or plan?

Both sides insist they want a deal before January, but a rising chorus of voices, especially Democrats, say they would rather go over the cliff than accept a deal that raised too few taxes while extracting too many cuts, especially to Medicare and Medicaid.

The only problem with this is if the media makes a mighty noise about Democrats' willingness to destroy the country in pursuit of ideological objectives.

What do you imagine the odds of that are?



31 posted on 11/17/2012 4:46:48 PM PST by Bratch
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To: Jack Hammer
The reality is that Lenin was able to take over because there was a power vacuum and he had control over the Russian secrete police. The state collapsed after he killed the Tsar and the provisional government was weak from the start and as Kerensky noted, they had no idea who Lenin truly was. Lenin had an election and fully believed that the people would choose him and his party, he was sadly mistaken. He then threw away the results. They further engaged in deception with the Western countries in Europe and the US to gain credits to salvage there totally bankrupt system through the New Economic Policy (NEP for short). Had those involved not given any aid or helped, Lenin and company would have been a foot note in history.

Obama is now in control of the behemoth bureaucracy. He has some support from some states, and the large cities but that is about it. He will see this as his chance to go after those areas that don't support him or could pose a problem. Of course it will be economic in nature initially. That all begs the question, how will they keep and maintain power if the entire system goes bankrupt and the productive class in essence goes Galt or on the welfare rolls. There power base will be brought down in short order leaving a vacuum unless they get help from the outside like Russia or China. However the only helping I see from those 2 is how they are going to carve us up as spoils of war.

32 posted on 11/18/2012 9:07:10 AM PST by DarkWaters ("Deception is a state of mind --- and the mind of the state" --- James Jesus Angleton)
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To: Bratch


33 posted on 11/18/2012 9:18:24 AM PST by TurboZamboni (Looting the future to bribe the present)
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