Both sides are racing toward Christopher Columbus’ edge of the earth to prevent from appearing as if neither of them have served the nation up to their opponents. I am confident their have been bigger issues and concerns in our nation’s capital, but I just cannot seem recall one that has been manufactured as this one has been.
Democrats want to ensure the President honors his campaign promises to the majority of Americans for tax relief and assistance for those who need it most. He, the President, has promised many reforms however in light of the fiscal condition of the country although he has yet to specifically lay out what those reforms would be.
Pressure has instead been applied to the Republican Party who has worked themselves into a clutch as they continue to fight for tax breaks for millionaires. It is not a winning argument and they know it out right, but the principle of the thought of any increased tax is just something they [the republicans] can’t seem to let go for fear they would be perceived as abandoning their base and serving up the nation on a platter to the Dems.
It’s a pickle, indeed. No one side wishes to reveal their hand in this dangerous game of chicken. Democrats don’t want to see it happen, nor does Obama want his presidency rocked with more economic fallout, but he can’t be seen as a wimp; a pushover by a defiant party after he won a convincing re-election after campaigning on the very thing the republicans won’t concede, permanent revenues.
You see, although John Boehner, the Speaker of the House has offered $800 billion in revenue, it’s not permanent funds and could dissipate over time if the economy begins to slow any further. Republicans in the Congress know that, but because they know you don’t, they keep saying how Boehner has put revenues on the table but those aren’t fixed and the President wanted hard numbers.
Obama campaigned on hard numbers to come from the wealthy in the form if increased tax rates, as they were when former President Bill Clinton was in Office, republicans however object. If Obama gives way, he will become a lame-duck president well before his time and the rest of his agenda is toast. So he almost has to hold out for a possible compromise, something close to his initial offer.
It’s clear that there are some republicans in the House of Representatives that are just opposed to any form of tax increase to anyone and won’t support anything at all regardless of what the President puts forward but they will have to accept reality that this is not a winner take all; that approach will not work and wrecking the nation to prove a failed point is just stupid.
Unfortunately, the only point they’ll all be making is How easy it is to look out for self. That’s one way to look at it, but yet the other view is this…their constituents elected representatives to speak for them; if those voters are not in support of increased taxes or rates, what do you do? One half of the country disagrees with the other half, beyond that, just less than one quarter of the electorate represents the extreme view of the “anti-Obama” voter who would rather have had the Mayans be right earlier this week about the end of the world than be in support of anything-Obama.
According to The Fiscal Times, Republican Representative Tim Huelskamp criticized Boehner’s handling of the negotiations, saying the speaker had “caved” to Obama opening the door to tax hikes. Huelskamp, a dissident first-term congressman from Kansas, said he was not willing to compromise on taxes even if they are coupled with cuts to government spending sought by conservatives.
House Republicans are fighting the same President on many fronts all simultaneously and it’s only just beginning. Between the financial edge of the earth appearing on the horizon and the battle retread of the 1980′s-90′s gun control battles with the gun lobby and the NRA, National Rifle Association, conservatives are coming under attack and imploding day by day as they search for their conservative core in balance with their often perceived antiquated ideology.
What Americans won’t accept from either Obama or the GOP is another deadline missed. Senate Minority Leader, Mitch McConnell suggested “we wait one year” (VIDEO) so we can “find common ground”. Well isn’t that the reason we are currently facing the ‘cliff? Because we could not “find common ground in the past year? Something has to happen and it best not even appear to be a punted deadline. Americans have grown weary of what Obama recently spoke of at his press conference at The White House, “every six months…we lurch from crisis to crisis” is his signal that he gets it.
What we expect from both sides is a path to move this country forward so the rest of the really hard working people can keep whatever progress they gained over the last four years. Nothing is hurting our economy and our nation more than the lack of certainty and security in our financial system. The voters of this country voted for a President and his agenda to increase the top tax rates on the wealthy, but many of them also voted for republicans who had pledged to fight against that President. It seems we’re likely looking at getting a deal done solely to avoid the financial cliff as opposed to addressing the debt and spending. Something has to give, but it shouldn’t feel like [you] each side has delivered the electorate to the other, but compromise is required. That’s my story and um sticking to it.