Monday, December 19, 2011

Maybe It's Time to Shoot Some Hostages

Re: House Republicans will kill tax cut/unemployment insurance extension bill that was agreed to just last week.

Had enough yet?

Timothy Noah at the New Republic correctly identifies the problem with the "both sides do it" argument the generally comes from the majority of the media, explaining how the Republicans did this very same thing with the super committee, and then comes to the conclusion that America itself is slowly but surely realizing (emphasis mine)...

Pearlstein believes the solution is to refuse to give political contributions to either side until Democrats and Republicans learn to cooperate. But as the foregoing demonstrates, even capitulation by Democrats does not achieve agreement. The problem isn't Democrat vs. Republican. It's Republican opposition to Democrats, to other Republicans, and ultimately to anything that runs the slightest risk of being labelled a "compromise." The public seems to understand this. A recent Pew poll shows that the public blames Republicans in Congress specifically for intransigence. Independents blame Republicans in Congress specifically for intransigence. Even Republicans blame Republicans in Congress specifically for intransigence.

What we need is a game-theory model that demonstrates how to get the Washington press corps and third-way goo-goos to accept what everybody but them seems to know. The Republican party is at war with Democrats, with reality, and ultimately with itself. It has gone insane. The only strategy I can think of is to watch the GOP self-destruct and hope the result benefits Democrats in November.

If there is any time to hang the bad behavior around their necks, this is it. They had an agreement with the Senate. Senate passes bill on an overwhelming bipartisan vote. The House GOP then blows it up. A GOP source admits to CNN that R members are concerned about the "political benefit the White House could gain in the national dialogue over taxes." They are playing political games with people's lives for political purposes only.

It doesn't get any more clear-cut than this stunt they are pulling right now.

Again, capitulation does not work.

Knowing that, this may be the time for a showdown.

Update: Reid says no.

“Senator McConnell and I negotiated a compromise at Speaker Boehner’s request. I will not re-open negotiations until the House follows through and passes this agreement that was negotiated by Republican leaders, and supported by 90 percent of the Senate," Reid said in a statement.

Get the flack out flacking about this. Any D Senators left in town that can make the circuit?