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Republican hostage taking, February 2014 edition

04 Feb

According to Robert Costa, Republicans have narrowed down their choices for what to hold hostage in return for raising the debt limit. They’ll either demand a repeal of the Affordable Care Act risk corridors, or approval of the Keystone XL pipeline. The more extreme Republicans favor the former, the not-as-extreme Republicans favor the latter. (We can’t call them moderate Republicans, because they’re no longer allowed in the party.) Meanwhile, the Freak Show Republicans tried to demand a constitutional amendment requiring a balanced budget, but someone must have told them, “STFU before you make us all look like idiots.”

All this for a one-year extension of the debt ceiling, after which they’ll think of some other ransom to extract from President Obama in exchange for agreeing to pay for the bills they’ve already rung up. Because you see, the real point in all of this is to try to make President Obama look bad.

This game is getting tiresome. Americans have grown weary of it. Senate Budget Committee Chairman Patty Murray, who just weeks ago worked with Paul Ryan to hammer out a budget, pointed out the obvious:

“There is no reason to hold anything hostage to getting a debt ceiling raise. We just had a budget agreement, we had an appropriations bill, we determined where our spending is going to be, we now have a responsibility as the managers of this country to pay for that.”

As far as the ACA risk corridors go, Republicans have been demonizing them as insurance company “bailouts.” Either they don’t understand risk corridors, or they do and choose to call them bailouts anyway. I suspect the smarter Republicans do understand them and have opportunistically instructed their pals who don’t to call them “bailouts.” Anything to demonize ObamaCare, of course. Ironically, the Congressional Budget Office says that repealing the risk corridors would actually increase the national debt.

I’ll give the Republicans one thing: They sure are stubborn, even as they keep lowering their price. Wasn’t it just a few years ago they were demanding trillions of dollars of spending cuts? Now it’s a pipeline. Next year they’ll demand that the first lady cut a college intern from her staff. In any event, I’m sure this will end just as well for them as it always has.

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17 Comments

Posted by on February 4, 2014 in Current Events, Politics, Uncategorized

 

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17 responses to “Republican hostage taking, February 2014 edition

  1. Cluster

    February 4, 2014 at 3:12 pm

    You know racism may be the only thing you guys have left (no pun intended – well maybe a little bit). With the growing storms of disaster that are Obamacare, the economy, IRS, Benghazi, etc., etc. – the left is just hoping that they can find those few racist people that they can label the entire conservative movement with and hope that the general electorate are too stupid to know the difference. Of course knowing that Obama was elected again just last year, which is the equivalent of electing a Hallmark card, your chances might be pretty good.

    But then again, the new CBO report wasn’t all that great.

    http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/feb/4/cbo-obamacare-push-2m-workers-out-labor-market/

     
    • watsonthethird

      February 4, 2014 at 3:22 pm

      Cluster, all I can say is, you have an unhealthy preoccupation with race. It’s not flattering.

      As for the CBO report, why don’t you give us some of your crack analysis of it. We’d love to hear it.

       
      • Cluster

        February 4, 2014 at 4:03 pm

        I assume you read the article, but that could be a big assumption on my part. Nevertheless, I will let the CBO analysis and the current results of the ACA speak for themselves.

        And taking exception with Mitch trying to find right wing racists under every rock is a “preoccupation with racism”. I think you have that turned around.

        On the plus side, you guys are giving me volumes of material to work with.

         
      • watsonthethird

        February 4, 2014 at 4:28 pm

        I will let the CBO analysis and the current results of the ACA speak for themselves.

        Then maybe you should have linked to the CBO report itself. And yes, I’ve read a number of articles about it. None of which are germane to my posting here.

        And taking exception with Mitch trying to find right wing racists under every rock is a “preoccupation with racism”. I think you have that turned around.

        No, I don’t have that turned around. I’m not Mitch. Mitch is no where to be found in this post or its comments. Every post I make, you respond with some racially oriented comment. Like I said, it’s not flattering.

         
      • Cluster

        February 4, 2014 at 4:33 pm

        Well number one, I don’t care if you or anyone else is flattered. Number two, consider this to be a non racially oriented comment.

         
      • watsonthethird

        February 4, 2014 at 4:40 pm

        I don’t care if you or anyone else is flattered.

        That is obvious. 🙂

         
      • Cluster

        February 4, 2014 at 4:50 pm

        Hey I have an idea. Now that the ACA will result in over 2 million people working fewer hours within the next decade, according to the CBO, despite Pelosi’s claim that it was a net job creator, how about if we start working on immigration reform and legalizing millions of immigrants and flood the unskilled labor market? Doesn’t that sound great??

        Just an aside – whoever thought Pelosi would be wrong?? I mean that woman is a genius.

         
      • watsonthethird

        February 4, 2014 at 5:21 pm

        Cluster, it’s sooo unlike you to read no further than the headline and demonstrate that you actually have no clue what is in the report. Gosh, who invaded Cluster’s head today?!

         
      • Cluster

        February 4, 2014 at 5:57 pm

        Well Watson, without getting into the weeds of the report, that’s what nearly every major news source is reporting today including Chuck Todd with MSNBC, and this from Politico:

        …..the budget office’s new economic report says the health care law will cause Americans to work fewer hours – enough to be the equivalent of 2 million fewer jobs in 2017.

        Unless they are all lying, I would say it’s a pretty safe bet.

        http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=80FD6FD3-3976-4258-92C9-D78B4016966F

         
      • watsonthethird

        February 4, 2014 at 5:58 pm

        Go on. Give us the details, Cluster. I know you can do it.

         
    • casper

      February 4, 2014 at 6:07 pm

      “With the growing storms of disaster that are Obamacare, the economy, IRS, Benghazi, etc., etc. – the left is just hoping that they can find those few racist people that they can label the entire conservative movement with and hope that the general electorate are too stupid to know the difference. ”

      Obamacare is starting to work.

      CBO and JCT estimate that the insurance coverage pro-
      visions of the ACA will markedly increase the number of
      nonelderly people who have health insurance—by about
      13 million in 2014, 20 million in 2015, and 25 million
      in each of the subsequent years through 2024.

      http://www.cbo.gov/sites/default/files/cbofiles/attachments/45010-Outlook2014.pdf

      The economy is getting better, just not as fast as we would like. Of course if Republicans wouldn’t do things to hurt the economy like shut down the govenment it would be recovering at a faster rate. IRS and Benghazi aren’t issues with the vast majority of Americans.

       
      • Cluster

        February 4, 2014 at 6:39 pm

        IRS and Benghazi aren’t issues with the vast majority of Americans.

        Look, you guys can live in your make believe world all you want, but every 2013 poll (Politico, Real Clear Politics, CNN/Gallup) indicated that the majority of people were paying attention to these issues, including the one below from Rasmussen released just the other day. And Casper, if we provide free healthcare (medicaid) to everyone, then everyone would have it, but that’s not exactly financially sustainable now is it? Besides, health insurance is not health care, right? Or have you trout that one through?

        Seventy-eight percent (78%) think it is at least somewhat important to find out exactly what happened in the events surrounding the murder of the four Americans in Libya, with 47% who say it is Very Important.

        http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/general_politics/january_2014/46_think_benghazi_will_hurt_hillary_clinton_in_2016

         
  2. casper

    February 4, 2014 at 6:15 pm

    BTW, the link I provided is to the CBO report. I like primary sources.

     
 
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