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The Morning Plum

* Why Dems must not punt on ending tax cuts for rich: Digby patiently explains that if Dems blow this one, they will be squandering a major opportunity to explain, and build the case, for "progressive economics."

* And the public wants this species of "progressive economics": Gallup finds that the option Obama is pushing -- let the tax cuts expire for the wealthy, but keep them for everyone else -- is the choice the public prefers most.

Also: A majority of independents supports letting the tax cuts for the rich expire.

* But some Dems are still too skittish for this fight: Despite the clear message in the polls, some leading Dems, such as Evan Bayh, worry it could revive the "stereotype" of bad old tax and spend liberals in the minds of indys and others.

* Ya think maybe Dems should call his bluff? Also in the above link: Mitch McConnell says the fight over tax cuts for the rich is "a debate we'd love to have." Uh, Dems? Please take him up on this.

* And what will Obama say today? At his presser this morning, he has a chance to hammer away at the Bush tax cuts for the rich and amplify his populist midterm message in other ways. Of course, reporters hungry to get Obama to make news are probably going to ask a lot of questions about Korans and mosques.

* DADT: Also, now that a Federal judge has ruled that Don't Ask Don't Tell is unconstitutional, it would be great if someone asked Obama a question today about how hard his Justice Department will fight this ruling.

* And: The ruling could increase pressure on the Senate to act on legislation that would repeal the policy.

* Moving the mosque? Adam Serwer says it would "set a terrible precedent by rewarding the efforts of Islamophobes and demagogues who have been exploiting anti-Muslim sentiment for political or personal gain."

* Media mainlining the fringe: Speaking of Korans and mosques, an important point from Rick Perlstein:

The problem is that elite media gatekeepers have abandoned their moral mandate to stigmatize uncivil discourse. Instead, too many outlets reward it.

* Rubio opens double-digit lead? So proclaims a new independent poll, but Chris Cillizza points out that it may well be an outlier, given other recent polling showing Rubio and Charlie Crist more or less tied.

Also: Cillizza notes that Crist's primary challenge is to assemble a coalition of independents and Dems while his opponents try to poach those voters from either side.

* What's her Angle this time? Hot-tempered Nevada journalist Jon Ralston erupts at the news that Sharron Angle has pulled out of a debate with Harry Reid on Ralston's show. As Alex Burns puts it: "No fury like a Ralston scorned."

* Coinage of the day: And Ralston says Angle speaks in an indecipherable tongue known as "Angleish," and does his best to translate.

What else is happening?

By Greg Sargent  |  September 10, 2010; 8:29 AM ET
Categories:  2010 elections , Foreign policy and national security , Morning Plum , Senate Dems , Senate Republicans , economy  
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Next: Dear Dems: You can win the argument over Bush tax cuts

Comments

Why Dems must not punt on ending tax cuts for rich

"And the public wants this species of "progressive economics" ...

Also: A majority of independents supports letting the tax cuts for the rich expire ...

But some Dems are still too skittish for this fight ...

Ya think maybe Dems should call his bluff? Also in the above link: Mitch McConnell says the fight over tax cuts for the rich is "a debate we'd love to have." Uh, Dems? Please take him up on this. ...

And what will Obama say today? ..."

Greg: You sound like you're getting as frustrated as I am.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 10, 2010 8:37 AM | Report abuse

Bottom line: It is long past time for President Obama to take charge. Either Obama threatens a veto or he's just blowing smoke -- and probably blowing the election too.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 10, 2010 8:40 AM | Report abuse

Talking about firing up his base!

This morning, President Obama had an interview with I may have mentioned the TJMS before, but if not, follow this link for info on Tom Joyner and the TJMS:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Tom_Joyner_Morning_Show" rel="nofollow

The TJMS is a nationally synthicated morning radio show targetted to African Americans and urban viewer. If there is a city or state where African Americans live in significant or insignificant numbers, then the TJMS is available. So by being on the TJMS the President got his message across to the his most loyal base.

He discussed some policy and how it was geared toward African Americans but you can tell, that his main focus was to make African Americans aware of the real stakes this election season, and why even though he's not on the ballot, he stressed why it was important for African Americans to get out and vote.

The TJMS show is usually re-broadcast on:

http://www.blackamericaweb.com/" rel="nofollow

Posted by: lynell33 | September 10, 2010 8:48 AM | Report abuse

Greg,

How are your points 2-5 above consistent with what you suggested yesterday about policy and public opinion?

Why does public opinion matter when it is on your side but become irrelevant when it is not? Do you have some consistent principle about this?

And regarding DADT, are you suggesting that the Justice Department should not vigorously defend it?

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 10, 2010 8:50 AM | Report abuse

DOJ lost. They could easily back down and say we had our day in court and wipe their hands clean of this.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 10, 2010 8:53 AM | Report abuse

Man, that Stark Country treasurer clip is nuts. I'm still amazed at the stupidity of human beings at times. It's like going to the zoo and seeing animals do odd things you're not used to seeing when you think you've seen it all.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 10, 2010 8:57 AM | Report abuse

"DOJ lost. They could easily back down and say we had our day in court and wipe their hands clean of this."

Sure. They could also have confessed judgment, i.e., conceded to the plaintiff's claim. But not consistently with their constitutional, statutory, and ethical obligations.

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 10, 2010 9:04 AM | Report abuse

"They could also have confessed judgment, i.e., conceded to the plaintiff's claim. But not consistently with their constitutional, statutory, and ethical obligations."

It's called "confessing error." And the rest of your comment is -- as usual -- divorced from reality.

Posted by: wbgonne | September 10, 2010 9:11 AM | Report abuse

"It's called "confessing error."

In court of appeals. But not trial court. Would have been a bit awkward for them to confess error on appeal.

"And the rest of your comment is -- as usual -- divorced from reality."

Lol, yeah, great argument. You must be a great lawyer.

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 10, 2010 9:16 AM | Report abuse

Greg...I appreciate your lead story today on the tax cuts.

You and wbgonne have pretty much articulated what I think.

I especially second wbgonne's 8:40 post. I'm not sure lack of a veto threat will blow the election...but if he actually does cave...imagine Forrest Gump's tone of voice here...AGAIN...it's just getting beyond frustrating and perhaps could indeed have electoral consequences.

During the HCR debate I posted a link to a large, diverse group of surveys that showed the public..including physicians professional organizations...preferred a single payer, or Medicare for All solution to our health care crisis. Even more pronounced was the public support for at least having the OPTION to buy into a public system like Medicare. Obama who is a great orator had the winds of public opinion at his back...he had promised a P.O. in his campaign...and yet for some reason...perhaps the W.H. would claim political reality...Obama caved like a tent in a hurricane. To this day I'll never understand why...did big insurance get to him...the Chamber of Commerce...Rick Scott's groups..the koch brothers? I'm not a conspiratorialist by nature and so I don't sit around thinking about this...

But as wbgonne says..bottom line...the administration totally blew it on the P.O. in that futile search for bipartisanship...
they better not blow it on letting the tax cuts for the wealthy expire...when once again they clearly have public opinion behind doing just that.

When does public opinion matter? Public opinion is certainly irrelevant when it wishes to violate the Constitution as in the Park 51. Many, including at some Federal Judges have argued that DADT and Gay Marriage abolition laws currently violate the Constitution. If they do...then again public opinion be damned.

Aside from Constitutional violations I believe public opinion is very important.
Not the end all and be all...leadership is after all about leading but public opinion is important.

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 10, 2010 9:21 AM | Report abuse

re: tax cuts for the rich

I wonder sometimes if Democrats understand politics. This seems like an excellent opportunity to offer a compromise--renew the tax cuts for top earners at 2% rather than 3%, so it's an effective 1% tax hike, and then force then the Republicans to defend depriving the middle class of their tax cuts based on a 1% tax hike for folks making over $250k dollars, an argument I think would be even more potent, given that 3% on folks making greater than 250k doesn't seem like that big a deal to many, according to the polls.

Or, do this--offer a new, clear, unambiguous, unqualified, permanent tax cut for folks making under $100k per year that's even a little bit more than the Bush tax cuts (while vetoing any extension), separate from the expiration of the Bush tax cuts, and force the Republicans to vote against that. This also gives all the Democrats hemming and hawing something to vote for while voting against the extension.

And/or additionally offer a millionaires tax that doesn't exclude Hollywood stars and athletes (and make a point of saying that it's a fair tax that doesn't favor or punish any group, unlike Clinton's attempt at same) that is still very low. Target it for medical research and helping poor kids and education, then trot out Warren Buffet and Oprah Winfrey and Bill Gates to support this 1.5% millionaires tax. And make the Republicans argue against that and vote no on the "Money for Orphans and To Cure Cancer" act of 2010.

You know, politics? Hello? Bueller?

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | September 10, 2010 9:37 AM | Report abuse

"When does public opinion matter? Public opinion is certainly irrelevant when it wishes to violate the Constitution as in the Park 51. Many, including at some Federal Judges have argued that DADT and Gay Marriage abolition laws currently violate the Constitution. If they do...then again public opinion be damned."

Not a bad partial answer in general, and more than Greg is brave enough to venture. But public opposition to the mosque raises no constitutional problems. It is just public opposition.

Obamacare, however, arguably is unconstitutional in major respects.

(There is also a problem in that there is a view or practice among liberals that the consitutionality of actions of Congress is not a matter or not an important matter Congress itself needs to consider but is left to the courts.)

But constitutionality is the easy part of the answer.

"Aside from Constitutional violations I believe public opinion is very important.
Not the end all and be all...leadership is after all about leading but public opinion is important."

Another creditable attempt at a simple answer when the Constitution isn't the issue. But for one thing I think the issue needs to be more precisely conceived than whether public opinion is importatnt. It can be important in some if, for example, it is strongly behind what is in fact a wise and just policy.

But the real crunch is when popular passions are in favor of what is unwise or unjust. And this is precisely the situation in which our form of government was designed to thwart the effects of "faction," whethe majority or minority.

So in the end it comes down to what each side thinks is wise and just or a "wicked scheme," as I think Madison called factional impulses. He assumed in Federalist 10 that there are normative standards for what is wicked and what isn't. The form of government was intended to provide structural and procedural impediments to wicked schemes by (1) limiting government powers in the first place, and (2) putting them in the hands of wise and broad-minded leaders.

But I don't think anyone believed it was guaranteed fail-safe.

Anyone disagree?

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 10, 2010 9:41 AM | Report abuse

Kevin,

Yes, that would be a typically cynical approach right out of the original D playbook.

Unfortunately, there might be enough grown-up Ds who understand that sticking it to the uber-rich 200/250k jet set is sticking it to employers and sticking it to the economy and sticking it to the unemployed.

And it evades the fundamental absence of logic to the D's position, which is based on the demogoguic and illogical claim that "the middle class" is robbed if the 200/250 "robber barons" are not bled.

Will the resentment campaign work? If Obama had any brains, he would hope not.

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 10, 2010 9:50 AM | Report abuse

And how persuasive is it for Gates and Buffet to clamor from atop their $50 billion piles of money for taxes on people making an infinitessimal fraction of what they earn?

Especially when they apparently don't walk the walk they talk?

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 10, 2010 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Btw, how many think we generally have wise and broad-minded leaders in office?

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 10, 2010 9:59 AM | Report abuse

"Especially when they apparently don't walk the walk they talk?"

What does Gates not walk?

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 10, 2010 10:03 AM | Report abuse

So, if Dems announce they won't let tax cuts expire on those above 250k, will they hold the House? Can anyone here tell me how many millions of jobs will be created?

Posted by: mikefromArlington | September 10, 2010 10:06 AM | Report abuse

@Kevin....I responded to your post about vitriol and hate on the last thread if you are interested.

As far as...
"This seems like an excellent opportunity to offer a compromise"

Why should the Dems EVER offer to compromise with the R's as they are currently constructed. Do you suppose people who are so craven as to disregard the health care crisis and pursue a policy simply of "Obama's Waterloo" should ever again be invited to the table without some kind of goodwill offering...like say supporting the small business tax cuts they were for...before Obama suggested them and then again in a fit of political expediency decided instead to again continue on their pursuit of "Obama's Waterloo" In other words Kevin they have played hardball to the very max...IMHO now is exactly the time to not compromise...public opinion is on the side of the Dems...roast the R's in their own stew of "Obama's Waterloo"

Having said that...if it was YOU running the R party and I believed there actually would be some rational negotiating on serious legislation then I'd certainly be open to your idea of...

"offer a new, clear, unambiguous, unqualified, permanent tax cut for folks making under $100k per year that's even a little bit more than the Bush tax cuts (while vetoing any extension), separate from the expiration of the Bush tax cuts, and force the Republicans to vote against that."

You realize though Kevin that proposition clearly sets you up for charges of "socialist" you are trying to redistribute the load from the working people to the wealthy. :-) In addition you could be referred to as a bigot in at least one poster's opinion because again you are "discriminating" against the wealthy!!! :-)

Posted by: rukidding7 | September 10, 2010 10:07 AM | Report abuse

Re: the tax cuts: I wrote about this over at my blog, so if you want to read it with swearing, it's here: http://3weirdsisters.wordpress.com

Essentially, the strategy should be to announce the Dem leadership's intention to let ALL the tax cuts expire, while introducing new legislation to restore tax cuts to everyone except those making over $250,000 per year. Bring it up for a vote as many times as possible between now and the election, and force the Republicans to vote against it/filibuster it repeatedly. Flog their vote(s) against tax cuts ceaselessly in the campaign, while repeating the pledge that if a Democratic majority retains control in November, passing the tax cut package will be top priority. In the unlikely event that the Republicans cry uncle and vote for the package, then 1)you've accomplished what you wanted to do, which is get rid of the ineffective tax cuts for millionaires and 2)you can flog your success at deficit reduction from now until the election, always noting that if Republicans had had their way, the deficit would continue to increase by $66 billion per year so Paris Hilton could buy a few more designer bags (and bags of other stuff) each year.

But read the original. The cursing makes it better, I swear.

Posted by: JennOfArk | September 10, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Re: the tax cuts: I wrote about this over at my blog, so if you want to read it with swearing, it's here: http://3weirdsisters.wordpress.com

Essentially, the strategy should be to announce the Dem leadership's intention to let ALL the tax cuts expire, while introducing new legislation to restore tax cuts to everyone except those making over $250,000 per year. Bring it up for a vote as many times as possible between now and the election, and force the Republicans to vote against it/filibuster it repeatedly. Flog their vote(s) against tax cuts ceaselessly in the campaign, while repeating the pledge that if a Democratic majority retains control in November, passing the tax cut package will be top priority. In the unlikely event that the Republicans cry uncle and vote for the package, then 1)you've accomplished what you wanted to do, which is get rid of the ineffective tax cuts for millionaires and 2)you can flog your success at deficit reduction from now until the election, always noting that if Republicans had had their way, the deficit would continue to increase by $66 billion per year so Paris Hilton could buy a few more designer bags (and bags of other stuff) each year.

But read the original. The cursing makes it better, I swear.

Posted by: JennOfArk | September 10, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

@ruk: "Why should the Dems EVER offer to compromise with the R's as they are currently constructed."

What I'm suggesting is purely politics. They are certainly entitled to lose nobly, which seems to be their wont. The idea is to put the Republicans in a difficult position for political advantage, not advocate for a 1% tax hike because they morally believe that is better than a 3% tax hike on the wealthy.

"In other words Kevin they have played hardball to the very max..."

Absolutely. They've also played politics--effectively, even though they've made some choices I certainly wouldn't have. I'm not suggesting they are under some moral obligation to compromise--and perhaps compromise is the wrong word (although it might be appropriate to use, again for political purposes).

"You realize though Kevin that proposition clearly sets you up for charges of "socialist" you are trying to redistribute the load from the working people to the wealthy. "

My proposal (really: query as to why don't they) is not because I support, or don't support, that particular strategy purely on policy, but because I think it would be good politics for Democrats. Hence my question: do elected Democrats not understand politics?

It's not a matter of which policy I think is best (I like a very low progressive tax on the wealthy that goes up at much smaller increments, but with many more increments on the way up, than our current tax structure), but what I think would afford Democrats a political advantage in an election year. I might be wrong (clearly, much smarter people in Washington think I am), but it seems odd to me that nobody is even trying it. The Democrats continue to let the Republicans set the terms of the debate, which seems like a recipe for losing.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | September 10, 2010 10:19 AM | Report abuse

How about Senator Voinovich admitting that the GOP is playing politics with the economy? This story needs to be repeated and he owes it to his constituents to explain why he waited so long.

Posted by: cmccauley60 | September 10, 2010 10:21 AM | Report abuse

"do elected Democrats not understand politics?"

As Casey Stengel used to say of the '62 Mets:

Can't anybody here play this game?

Posted by: wbgonne | September 10, 2010 10:29 AM | Report abuse

"How about Senator Voinovich admitting that the GOP is playing politics with the economy? This story needs to be repeated and he owes it to his constituents to explain why he waited so long."

Agreed!

I would LOVE to see a nice long post on this topic!

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 10, 2010 10:33 AM | Report abuse

Kevin,
I agree with you in that Democrats need to be open to negotiation to get what they want i.e. permanent tax cuts for the middle class. The left keeps drawing the line in the sand, which is easy if you are a blogger but a little harder if you are a politician who has to compromise to get things passed through Congress.

Republicans are against all things Obama, and they will squawk loud enough, with the help of Fox News, to convince enough voters that tax increases at this time are dangerous.

Could we stop drawing lines in the sand for Obama? He should challenge the Republicans that if they want to keep the tax cuts for the wealthy, then they have to pay for them this time. Make Republicans figure out how to pay for these tax cuts without robbing from the middle class and poor.

Posted by: Beeliever | September 10, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

Anyone seen the "7 Questions for the Imam at ground Zero" on the Fox website today? I particularly like question 6:

"As the United States moves dangerously closer to a top-down government that regulates the smallest details of our lives, is this not a more accurate analogy for shari'a?"

http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2010/09/10/rev-john-rankin-ground-zero-imam-rauf-cordoba-house-islam-questions-jesus/

Posted by: cmccauley60 | September 10, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

It is absurd for people to demand that President Obama threaten a veto now, for something that is not even close to happening. You keep your powder dry, until you are close to the time when you might need to use it.

In order to get a bill passed, that will cut the taxes of the people making less that 250K, and eliminate the Bush cuts for the real fat cats, a bill will have to be passed. Until it starts to take shape, and President Obama has some idea, of what it might look like, it would be foolish of him to start blustering about using his veto pen.

Grow up people, and stop crying for your pacifier. Let the man do his job, without you always screaming for him to bring you a pacifier.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 10, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

@benen:

"He's retiring anyway -- meaning Voinovich need not worry about partisan reprisals from his party -- and he apparently heard from constituents during the break who convinced him to do the right thing.

But pay careful attention to his explanation. To hear Voinovich tell it, his Republican colleagues were, in fact, playing petty games, as part of a larger political "messaging" effort. Now, the Ohio senator believes, "we don't have time anymore."

That's true, we didn't have time in July, either.

Voinovich is effectively admitting that his Republican Party delayed progress on a worthwhile economic bill -- on purpose -- as part of an election-season scheme. That's quite a concession, and if our political system made more sense, would be considered pretty scandalous."

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2010_09/025607.php

See that?

Scandalous! Scandalous! Scandalous!

It's a scandal! It will get visitors and clicks and traffic, iow, it has all the elements that the for-profit media needs in order to write a news story.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | September 10, 2010 10:39 AM | Report abuse

"How about Senator Voinovich admitting that the GOP is playing politics with the economy?"

Sadly, Voinovich in no way speaks for anyone but himself.

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 10, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Since this Terry Jones creep is now demanding that the location of the proposed Islamic Center in New York be moved, or he will burn Korans; isn't that a form of extortion?

So why not just arrest the mope; and charge him with attempted extortion?

Posted by: Liam-still | September 10, 2010 10:45 AM | Report abuse

"What does Gates not walk?"

Gates advocates higher taxes but to my knnowledge has not divested himself of his wealth or even a substantial portion of it to the government.

Hence, he claims "the rich" are unfairly undertaxed but, having billions and billions of robber baron profits extracted from his employees and consumers, he does not walk the walk by paying his own "fair share," which should be the biggest "fair share" in the land.

And before you raise it, his foundation or charity work does not count. It just means he believes he is the best spender of his own money even while he claims Barack Obama is the best spender of the rest of our money.

In short, he is the ultimate limousine liberal.

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 10, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

Mr Sargent..
reconsider your wordson the tax cuts.. if the tax cuts for the wealthy expire, the wealthy still get all the tax cuts the less fortunate receive.. what they dont get is a bonus cut on their higher earnings and dividends.
in other words their "special rights" in the bush tax cuts ends.

Posted by: newagent99 | September 10, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

"But some Dems are still too skittish for this fight"
Why not investigate the annual income of those Dems in order to find the reason behind this, Gregg?

Posted by: Gray62 | September 10, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

All, I pulled together all the recent polling showing strong support for ending the Bush tax cuts for the rich:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/09/dear_dems_you_can_win_the_argu.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | September 10, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

For those people who keep saying that President Obama should follow what the polls are saying, when it comes to what stance he should take on the NY Muslim Center location:

You want the President to take orders from Poll results, rather than upholding the Constitution; is that what you are calling for?

If it is, then I dare you to be consistent, and also call for him to fully pull out of Iraq and Afghanistan immediately, since the polls also claim, that the majority of Americans no longer support those foreign military adventures.

Also; how come you were not calling for President Bush to get out of Iraq immediately, after the support for his Iraq Occupation evaporated? Instead you were arguing the exact opposite. You were saying; ignore the polls, and stay the course.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 10, 2010 10:53 AM | Report abuse

@Beeliever: "I agree with you in that Democrats need to be open to negotiation to get what they want i.e. permanent tax cuts for the middle class."

I'm not really saying negotiate--I'm saying do an end-run. Pop up with an awesome set of unambiguous, permanent tax cuts for the middle class, and force Republicans to vote against that. Separate the issue from the expiration of the Bush tax cuts completely. Say: you make $50k? You're taxes are going to be 20% (arbitrary number, just something lower than current, even with the Bush tax cuts), no matter what happens to the Bush tax cuts. You make $80k? Still lower. Thus, expire or not, for the middle class it no longer matters what happens with the Bush tax cuts, you're unilaterally getting a better deal from the Democrats. There is nothing else attached to this bill. Just tax cuts for the middle class.

Now, Republicans. Vote agains this bill.

What I'm suggesting is pure politics. You may or may not want that legislation on it's own merits, but unless Democrats want the Republicans setting the agenda for the remainder of the Obama presidency, they need to co-opt a few Republican issues, and make them vote against attractive things that people universally approve. Or seem to be getting on board and in bed with Obama.

It's called politics. The Republicans are leaving themselves wide open. Apparently, there is a certain timidity that accompanies being in the majority.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | September 10, 2010 10:57 AM | Report abuse

"isn't that a form of extortion?"

No, and under SCOTUS precedent burning korans would be protected speech. The government can't criminalize protected speech. If they bought the korans, they can do anything they want with them (save throw them a people, perhaps).

You should just be thankful the NEA isn't funding koran burning.

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 10, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Liam,
Or how about we hold the politicians accountable who used the Islamic Center in New York for political purposes.

The Republicans are responsible for this mess happening in Florida with their anti-Muslim rhetoric, and as usual they take no responsibility. Obama is having to wipe up the Republican party's mess once again while they feign innocence.

This is exactly why Palin should never be let even near the White House. She'd have us at war with the entire Muslim population within six months.

Posted by: Beeliever | September 10, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Evan Bayh skittish?

Sure!
http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2009/11/30/bayh/index.html

Posted by: grosmec | September 10, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Saying that unless you do as I demand, I will burn your holy book, is a threat and a form of extortion, no matter what our resident Fantasy Toon Town Lawyer claims it is.

Terry Jones is free to say he will burn Korans. He is not free to say that someone else must surrender their freedom of religion and expression, or he will burn their holy book.

That is extortion, and Terry Jones should be arrested and charged now.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 10, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

For the record:

I love Nancy Pelosi,

and;

while I am not wild about Harry, I would prefer to keep him in charge, rather than making either Schumer or Durbin majority leader. I like Durbin, but I think he does not have the steel that it takes, to herd cats.

And of course, Harry any day, over Mitch Kevorkian McConnell.

Posted by: Liam-still | September 10, 2010 11:26 AM | Report abuse

"Sadly, Voinovich in no way speaks for anyone but himself."

Yeah, I'm sure they excluded him from the caucus meetings and he is completely unaware of the GOP posturing. He's probably just making it all up.

Posted by: cmccauley60 | September 10, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

And yet Holder and Obama are failing to enforce Liam's law. Incompetent? Negligent?

Posted by: quarterback1 | September 10, 2010 11:50 AM | Report abuse

"he is completely unaware of the GOP posturing"

You'd have to have been off the planet to not be aware of the GOP's posturing of voting no on every single bill. And they still get to caucus with their party even if they are retiring. Geez pleeeze!

Republicans have stopped participating in government specifically for party gain during a deep, painful recession that they contributed greatly to occurring. There's no acceptable excuses. If Republican voters want to let them off the hook, fine...but history won't. And if Republicans have their way, we will lose another decade of growth due to their poor leadership and lack of vision.

Posted by: Beeliever | September 10, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

"You'd have to have been off the planet to not be aware of the GOP's posturing of voting no on every single bill. And they still get to caucus with their party even if they are retiring. Geez pleeeze! "

Ummm....I'm pretty sure the post you're responding to is pure snark.

Posted by: schrodingerscat | September 10, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

If Republican voters want to let them off the hook, fine...but history won't. And if Republicans have their way, we will lose another decade of growth due to their poor leadership and lack of vision.

Posted by: Beeliever | September 10, 2010 12:14 PM
-------

Uh, Beeliever, there aren't enough Republicans to do anything on their own. They'll need the aid of some Democrats and/or Independents. That will mean you've lost the argument. You know the argument I mean. The one where a party in control of the White House and with huge majorities in both houses of Congress can't get the job done because of the other party. Good luck with that "party of No" crap. Dems may soon BECOME the "party of No."

Posted by: Brigade | September 10, 2010 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Brigade,
Democrats would never do what the Republicans have done. They actually believe they have a responsibility to lead our country out of the ditch, not sit on the sidelines and just draw a paycheck while the country is hurting.

Posted by: Beeliever | September 10, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

"At his presser this morning, he has a chance to hammer away at the Bush tax cuts for the rich and amplify his populist midterm message in other ways. Of course, reporters hungry to get Obama to make news are probably going to ask a lot of questions about Korans and mosques."
---------------------------------------------

B-b-but, Obama must take a stand on mosques and stuff! Where is the outrage!?

Posted by: CalD | September 10, 2010 1:40 PM | Report abuse

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