Skip to comments.Here's a Hunch: Obama doesn’t want a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff
Posted on 11/18/2012 5:08:01 PM PST by SeekAndFind
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 theyre 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.
if this drags into next year,
any tax cuts could be made retroactive
to Jan 1st, or any other date,
thus lowering the urgency of immediate action.
Dopey GOP will get and take the blame.
“My Mama done tole me
To bring back a rabbit”.
Well, we do know that one of his goals is to raise taxes; so, why would he not want to go over the cliff. He gets what he wants (higher taxes), and he doesn't have to do anything. As a bonus, he gets to blame the Republicans for not accepting his plan for "taxes on the wealthy".
It's a two-fer for him.
Who didn’t know this? Collapse is the goal, and voters mostly liked the idea. The literate ones anyway.
“If the Republicans were smart”...... they would not have been doumb enough to stick with the position of protecting tax rates for the rich and stuck with talking about repairing the economy with something besides Trickle Down.
Used to call them GOPe, now a better will be GOPd (for dummy).
Now the only way they can go is to refuse to go along and refuse to do any more Continuing Resolutions on that old tired budget from 2008. Even if the dems are able to mud the GOP with some of this, in two years the whole world can change and the sheeple will have forgotten 2012 Fiscal Cliff.
All spending bills originate in the House. Send them the Penny plan or the Ryan budget, and be done til the other side responds. Let Reid and 0bama submit their own plan, something to reconcile.
There will be nothing and 0bama will veto the only plan. And the Fiscal Cliff happens.
What else can Boehner do? At this point, Boehner is negotiating with himself.
His goal is to convert the U.S. to Euro-style world socialism under control of unelected "masters" at the U.N. The only way he can "solve" the financial crisis he created is to increase taxes tremendously and starve the military. I'm now convinced the Republicans in Congress don't have the brains or the will to stop him. They'll just reshuffle the deck and declare a new game.
I hate to say it, I think there was fraud, but I also believe Christians did not want to vote for a Mormon, it’s a shame, but I believe it to be true, too many missing voters this time, they just didn’t show up.
They’re dead ~ islame ~ dead. People who voted in 2008 for McCain showed up to vote for Romney but a fair percent of them were dead!
Gains? Are you serious? Now the rats know they can steal in broad daylight without even a whimper the only seats the GOP will take will be what they are allowed.
Exactly! It's over folks. Time to get behind the Allen Wests of the country or don't bother to raise anymore money for the party. Fool us once shame on us, fool us twice and they'd be facing charges (if they were a business and not a political party).
25% of the evangelical vote went to Obama. If they have no problem voting for a Muslim they'd have no problem voting for a Mormon.
Obviously Romney did not get specific enough to win over the Christian votes (if what you say is true). I got my stats from an evangelical TV program who was quoting World Net Daily.
One percent cuts in the face of base line budget increases is far more radical than it looks on its face. I like it, but I doubt that it will move forward without a crisis. Like a bond rating downgrade or three.
Obama will get his tax increase while not giving up a single penny in spending even thought he says he will. AND, the media will carry his water on this issue. Republicans need to call Obama’s bluff, challenge the media to report the facts and face the inevitable cliff - we have already gone over it - and make Obama eat it.
If they're tired enough, they'll up and deal - and then let themselves be primaried off to the old pasture.
Republicans are terrified. So they took the House just to give in on Obama’s demands because they are scared they will get the blame for a bad Obama economy?
I never thought that Republicans (apparent) position that no one no matter how rich they are can have to pay another dime in taxes or the economy ‘Falls off a cliff’. But now they have made this their #1 rule and they are finding it is not going well.
So here we are. GWB was POTUS for eight years and he got the blame for the bad economy in his second term but if the economy goes bad under POTUS O then the Republican House gets the blame instead. Obama is the man of plastic. He gets the blame for nothing.
Bohners idea of playing this poker game is to say ‘I cant get my members to vote for...”
If Bohner caves and taxes go up on the rich and the economy doesn't tank as Republicans spent 4 years claiming it would then no one will ever believe them again. Now if they do go up because Republicans give in (which will probably happen) and the economy tanks then Rs better figure out a way to disown their involvement in it or it wont be useful to them.
Federal taxes are <16% of GDP. Haven't been that low since 1950. Under Reagan the tax bite averaged 18.2% of GDP (17.3% was the lowest in any single year).
There won't be any real cut in spending until the welfare programs (SS and medicare/medicaid) are reformed. I see zero chance of that happening with baby boomers poised to retire with next to no savings. Housing market looks poised to take another leg down with FHA delinquencies on the rise, so consider that 'nest egg' too rotten to eat.
Save, save, save. And protect those savings in unleveraged assets, not dollars or homes.
Why would he want a deal? He and his government get much more tax dollars by letting it all expire and they can blame it on the Republicans.
Very simple solution here. Let the automatic spending cuts expire without doing anything. and forget about entitlements for now. Why give that to Obama?
So lets say Rs give in under pressure the tax increases on the rich after holding out a bit and making a fuss about it , and then the automatic spending cuts go into effect too.
Will that be enough to put the country back into recession? If so (and I don't know if it is) then what will Obama’s big win on tax increases buy Dems? What will be the lesson for the country? What will Republicans make it?
"See we tried to warn you" ?