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Posted at 3:16 PM ET, 12/13/2010

What if most rank and file Dems support tax cut deal?

By Greg Sargent

In defending the Obama tax cut deal against Democratic criticism, White House officials have argued that the deal's opponents don't speak for Democrats as a whole. Communications director Dan Pfeiffer, for instance, suggested to Politico recently that liberal criticsm of the deal is mostly confined to "several very loud voices from the left."

That's an overstatement, since many Dems in Congress also oppose the deal. But two new polls out today do seem to confirm that most rank and file Democratic voters support the compromise, putting them at odds with Congressional Dems and left-leaning critics in the media.

First, a new Washington Post/ABC News poll finds that overall, nearly seven in 10 Americans support the deal. But it's the partisan breakdown of the numbers that's of particular interest.

It finds that among Democrats, a surprising 68 percent support the package. This is true, even though only 38 percent of Dems in the same poll support the provision extending the Bush tax cuts for the rich. The provisions that Obama won -- including the extension of unemployment benefits -- induced another 30 percent of Dems to agree to support the overall deal, despite their opposition to extending the cuts for the wealthy. This suggests they may buy the idea that the compromise Obama won is a good one.

A new Pew poll out today has similar numbers. It finds that 63 percent of Democrats, and 65 percent of self-described liberals, supports the deal.

Whatever the merits of the deal, these numbers do raise doubts about the depth and breadth of the revolt it has sparked among Dems. What's more, recent polls have shown that in general, Dems want Obama to compromise with Republicans in far greater numbers than GOPers want their leaders to do the same with the President. Dems heart compromise!

On the general question of whether to compromise with Republicans -- and on this deal in particular -- there does seem to be a real gap in opinion between Dem rank-and-filers and Obama's high-profile critics.


UPDATE, 3:46 p.m.: In fairness, Pfeiffer didn't directly say that criticism of the deal is confined to a few loud voices on the left. Asked to respond to criticism of Obama's rebuke of Dem critics, Pfeiffer said:

"The president is responding to several very loud voices from the left who said we should fight even if people's taxes go up. The president strongly disagrees with that position, and he is arguing his case."

UPDATE, 6:33 p.m.: I shouldn't have said the poll shows that Dems "strongly support" the deal, because the numbers don't show intensity. I meant that they support the deal in large numbers. I've edited the above to correct.

By Greg Sargent  | December 13, 2010; 3:16 PM ET
Categories:  House Dems, House GOPers, Senate Dems, Senate Republicans, taxes  
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Comments

The US v. Lopez will be the guiding decision on health care.


The issue is not whether there is a line between States' powers, but WHERE the line is.


Here is a quote from that Court decision: "To uphold the Government's contentions here, we have to pile inference upon inference in a manner that would bid fair to convert congressional authority under the Commerce Clause to a general police power of the sort retained by the States. Admittedly, some of our prior cases have taken long steps down that road, giving great deference to congressional action. The broad language in these opinions has suggested the possibility of additional expansion, but we decline here to proceed any further. To do so would require us to conclude that the Constitution's enumeration of powers does not presuppose something not enumerated, and that there never will be a distinction between what is truly national and what is truly local. This we are unwilling to do."


Posted by: RainForestRising | December 13, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Hmmmm. I'm not terribly surprised by these numbers. They are, to some extent, consistent with other polling that reveals a divide between prominent leftist bloggers and the rank-and-file so-called liberals. The people outside of the blogosphere appear to have a higher opinion, in general, of Obama, and his policies.

Posted by: CTVoter | December 13, 2010 3:26 PM | Report abuse

Greg, you write: "there does seem to be a real gap in opinion between Dem rank-and-filers and Obama's high-profile critics."

I'm shocked, SHOCKED!

No, seriously, I think this is a clear point that so many in the media ignore for obvious reasons - it's not only their own who are part of the critics (far be it from them to think pundits don't represent "real Americans"), but it is also their most avid readers who share their un-representative beliefs.

It reminds me of a comment I saw on DailyKos recently attacking Obama that said, "I saw via Krugman that Broder likes the tax deal so it has to be bad news for Obama." These political junkies can't conceive of the notion that whatever Krugman or Broder says actually means nothing to the vast majority of people.

Or take the NY Times. I read the article on liberals who wanted a primary challenge on Obama with interest. It cited, amongst others, Michael Lerner and Jane Hamsher. Really? Jane Hamsher? Representative samples of the liberal base? Hardly. Just as so many avid members of the "blogosphere" (take the users of DailyKos as a good example), can't fathom the notion that they don't represent the liberal base.

Indeed, this episode highlights the gap not just between prominent liberal critics and the rest of the Democratic base, but those who make up the "blogosphere" (largely white and upper-middle class) and the rest of the actual Democratic base.

I used to hate the GOP talking point of "elites vs. real Americans," but in this case I can start to a way in which it applies

Posted by: dansachar | December 13, 2010 3:27 PM | Report abuse

CTVoter, I wish you would hang out here regularly.

Posted by: Greg Sargent | December 13, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Edit to above comment: people outside the blogosphere who are not conservative Republicans, that is.

Posted by: CTVoter | December 13, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

This was particularly interesting:

"Majorities across party lines also oppose the provision on cutting the payroll tax for Social Security by two percentage points for most workers. The reluctance to back this specific tax cut may stem in part from a general resistance to any changes to the popular social insurance safety net."

Posted by: jnc4p | December 13, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

ALL,

For over two hundred years, the States have regulated health care - the States give licenses to doctors.

So, are ALL the laws of ALL those States over ALL two hundred years always been unconstitutional ???


What is the basis for this sudden change in law???

Clearly, the industrial revolution allowed the commerce clause to expand - however that was an economy-wide change which necessitated an adaptation in the laws.


So, what is the proper role of the States in our political system? At some point, this question has to be answered. What areas have been reserved to the States??? It is not logical to allow the Federal powers to expand - because that is not what the Constitution provides for. In fact, the 10th Amendment provides for the exact opposition.


Isn't it funny how the liberals tend to argue that the Bill of Rights only has 8 Amendments.


The liberals love to ignore the 2nd and 10th Amendments - however those Amendments have equal standing with all the other provisions of the Constitution.

.

Posted by: RainForestRising | December 13, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Tax cuts always poll well, especially decoupled from consequences. Everybody wants more money in his or her pocket. I object to the tax deal because I fear the inevitable consequences of raising the debt another billion dollars. I am thinking ahead to the inevitable GOP onslaught against Big Government and the Welfare State. I wish someone would consider what happens AFTER the tax cuts. This isn't a popularity contest.

Posted by: wbgonne | December 13, 2010 3:36 PM | Report abuse

One wonders if the States will regulate where the Federal Gov't is not "allowed"? I don't expect conservatives to assume regulatory duties on the State level any more than they want Uncle Sam to do it.

An upside to this however, is that at least "powers reserved for the States" will be utilized in liberal States and the unregulated, polluted, uneducated and uninsured will be left to stew in their own juices.

Posted by: ChuckinDenton | December 13, 2010 3:42 PM | Report abuse

There is neither mystery nor inconsistency here:

1. We all want an agreement, recognizing that it entails compromise;

2. We don't like this particular compromise, since it appears as and is a compromise on core values.

Posted by: AMviennaVA | December 13, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

"But two new polls out today do seem to confirm that rank and file Democratic voters strongly support the compromise"

Attention Greg, that's FALSE! See the actual data. At Pwe, only 12% of people STRONGLY approve! Pls correct your story.

Posted by: Gray62 | December 13, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

I don't mean to be rude, but of course a majority of people support money going into their pockets when there are no offsetting spending cuts. It's like asking people if they like having their cake and eating it, too.

This is a spectacularly reckless bill, and the only thing that justifies it is the fact that it only lasts 2 years. We are in a terrible recession and so deficit financing things for a short period of time is OK. It would be better for our economy if we built some things instead of less effective money drops, but it's better for our economy in the short AND the long term than no deficit spending.

The problem, of course, is that Republicans want these tax cuts to be permanent, and deficit financed. And they have historically pushed through permanent spending on their priorities ($500b medicare drug bill, wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, increased defense spending) as deficit spending.

The problem comes when the recession is over and its no longer appropriate to deficit spend. Democrats have demonstrated in the 90's and then again today, through the ACA, their impressive commitment to long-term responsible budgeting. The Republicans simply have not, and keep promising the American voters a pony.

When, exactly, does the press start calling them out on this?

Posted by: theorajones1 | December 13, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

edit:

"I object to the tax deal because I fear the inevitable consequences of raising the debt another TRILLION dollars."

Posted by: wbgonne | December 13, 2010 3:49 PM | Report abuse

My dear Ms Jones, you are making the same mistake that DC pundits fall prey to. That is you assume that the behavior of the congressional Republicans mimics that of America's conservative/Republicans. NOT SO.

In fact we fired many congressional Republicans for over spending. The smart guys, like Cantor and Ryan know that their party was fired and that they must earn back the trust of the electorate.

Perhaps you will recall that one of the themes running through this past election was a reduction in the size and scope of government. We don't want more debt and more deficits. We want less government. Less government saves us money. I don't think we can get back to a balanced budget on spending reductions alone, but the old saying goes "fool me once shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me". Let's see some spending cuts before we start asking for more money from America's workers.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | December 13, 2010 3:59 PM | Report abuse

skippy:

Why aren't the teabaggers who are against deficit spending railing against this tax plan compromise that will, in fact, raise the deficit? They have been awfully quite lately for being so "principled."

Posted by: suekzoo1 | December 13, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Conflict of interest much? He should have recused himself.

"Judge Who Ruled Health Care Reform Unconstitutional Owns Piece of GOP Consulting Firm"

Henry E. Hudson, the federal judge in Virginia who just ruled health care reform unconstitutional, owns between $15,000 and $50,000 in a GOP political consulting firm that worked against health care reform. You don't say!

As the Huffington Post and others first noted last July, Hudson's annual financial disclosures show that he owns a sizable chunk of Campaign Solutions, Inc., a Republican consulting firm that worked this election cycle for John Boehner, Michele Bachmann, John McCain, and a whole host of other GOP candidates who've placed the purported unconstitutionality of health care reform at the center of their political platforms. Since 2003, according to the disclosures, Hudson has earned between $32,000 and $108,000 in dividends from his shares in the firm (federal rules only require judges to report ranges of income).

http://tpmlivewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/12/judge-who-ruled-health-care-reform-unconstitutional-owns-piece-of-gop-consulting-firm.php?ref=fpblg

Posted by: suekzoo1 | December 13, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Greg---Love your work. However, I rarely drop in to the comments because the last time I did, there appeared to be a troll-infestation...so I didn't stop back for quite some time--even though I WAS reading your work.

Posted by: CTVoter | December 13, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Greg,

You should take a look at Gallup. Their results do not show any where near the support levels or enthusiasm for the deal, that Pew claims.

From NPR

"Update at 3:20 p.m. ET. A new USA TODAY/Gallup poll comes up with a different take:

"Forty-nine percent of those surveyed support passage of the deal — a plurality but not quite a majority — while a third oppose it and nearly one in five say they're not sure."

That weekend survey of 1,019 adults has a margin of error of +/—4 percentage points.

USA TODAY's Susan Page writes that the public response to the deal is "tepid."

Posted by: Liam-still | December 13, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

Greg,

You should take a look at Gallup. Their results do not show any where near the support levels or enthusiasm for the deal, that Pew claims.

From NPR

"Update at 3:20 p.m. ET. A new USA TODAY/Gallup poll comes up with a different take:

"Forty-nine percent of those surveyed support passage of the deal — a plurality but not quite a majority — while a third oppose it and nearly one in five say they're not sure."

That weekend survey of 1,019 adults has a margin of error of +/—4 percentage points.

USA TODAY's Susan Page writes that the public response to the deal is "tepid."

Posted by: Liam-still | December 13, 2010 4:18 PM | Report abuse

CT Voter,

One of the commentors (Kevin Willis) created a troll eliminator. It allows you to put anyone on "ignore" so their posts are invisible to you.

It works with Firefox and Chrome, but not with IE. You can download it here. It really makes the comments section tolerable.

https://userscripts.org/scripts/show/89140

Posted by: suekzoo1 | December 13, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

CT Voter,

One of the commentors (Kevin Willis) created a troll eliminator. It allows you to put anyone on "ignore" so their posts are invisible to you.

It works with Firefox and Chrome, but not with IE. You can download it here. It really makes the comments section tolerable.

https://userscripts.org/scripts/show/89140

Posted by: suekzoo1 | December 13, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

I wish someone would consider what happens AFTER the tax cuts. This isn't a popularity contest.

Posted by: wbgonne | December 13, 2010 3:36 PM
===========================

Exactly. Poll: You like the tax cut compromise?

What do you say when the UI benefits run out in 13 months, while the payroll taxes and Bush tax cuts remain as hostages thanks to expiring during the next presidential campaign.

Wait, don't answer yet! We're going to cut Social Security, because all the Very Serious People who supported tax cuts for the wealthy are suddenly concerned about the debt again. And those Simpson-Bowles recommendations are just So serious. NOW what would you pay?

P.S. Once again, time to point out the fraudulent reasoning re: it's all the fault of Jane Hamsher and those darned purity lefties.

1) It's all their fault that the 2010 elections went sour.

2) No one listens to/agrees with them anyways. Look at these polls!

Anyone see the contradiction?
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | December 13, 2010 4:27 PM | Report abuse

if: "What do you say when the UI benefits run out in 13 months, while the payroll taxes and Bush tax cuts remain as hostages thanks to expiring during the next presidential campaign."

The payroll tax cut is for one year only.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | December 13, 2010 4:30 PM | Report abuse

"Why aren't the teabaggers who are against deficit spending railing against this tax plan compromise that will, in fact, raise the deficit? They have been awfully quite lately for being so "principled."

I'm supporting it because of the payroll tax holiday. I'm hopeful that "temporary" cut can be extended and undermine support for the program. Adding to the deficit for a chance to eliminate Social Security seems like a fair trade.

But I'm probably not a typical "teabagger"

Posted by: NoVAHockey | December 13, 2010 4:31 PM | Report abuse

CTvoter

I don't see that - I see the "professional left" wanting to support Obama - and probably folding in behind him down the road.


The rank-and-file is HORRIFIED at what Obama has done over the past few years.


The rank-and-file are the ones with Conservative neighbors, who constantly ask how much Obama's Trillion dollar deficits and massive government programs are going to cost down the road.


The democratic unions have already pushed property taxes beyond the breaking point - no one can afford any more taxes.


AND there is Obama - pressing ahead with massive government programs that someone has to pay for.

The liberals have become a GIANT SHAKE-DOWN OPERATION - THIS TAX HOLIDAY IS A DISGRACE.


.

Posted by: RainForestRising | December 13, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Thanks suekzoo1----I'll check it out....

Posted by: CTVoter | December 13, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

I'm not the least bit surprised by this. I wonder what this means about the dynamics within the Dem House Caucus? Whatever is their beef, it is not strictly over the tax cut compromise.

Plus numbers like this make me wonder if the GOP is looking for a way out of this. They don't want to support something that 60+% of Democrats like. That spells trouble in crazytown.

Also, I can't resist the dig: As much as I like many left-wing bloggers, there is a very good reason why the White House has not picked them up as Senior Advisers. They rally the troops - a vital function. But luckily, they don't make the sausage.

Posted by: willows1 | December 13, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

The payroll tax cut is for one year only.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | December 13, 2010 4:30 PM
================================

Thanks for that correction. But I do see it, along with the other costs associated with this deal, being used to support Social Security cuts. Which is the last thing a Democratic President should be advocating.
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | December 13, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

CtVoter

One man's troll is another man's anti-troll

Posted by: RainForestRising | December 13, 2010 4:41 PM | Report abuse

if: "Which is the last thing a Democratic President should be advocating."

I don't think he is, nor do I see him as boxed in on this issue especially since it's on the employee side only. Employers are not getting this temporary cut. I think that changes the dynamic significantly.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | December 13, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

ifthethunderdontgetya

I've never seen anyone make the argument that the "professional left" was responsible for 2010--could you point to a source?

Posted by: CTVoter | December 13, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

All, Senate just passed Obama tax cut deal; here's what's next in the House:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/12/senate_votes_for_tax_cut_deal.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | December 13, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse

ifthethunderdontgetya

I've never seen anyone make the argument that the "professional left" was responsible for 2010--could you point to a source?

Posted by: CTVoter | December 13, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse

"The payroll tax cut is for one year only."

and after that year it turns into a tax increase. people are going to see their take-home pay increase. by not extending the "holiday" paychecks will decrease because of "obama's tax hike"

Posted by: NoVAHockey | December 13, 2010 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Also, I can't resist the dig: As much as I like many left-wing bloggers, there is a very good reason why the White House has not picked them up as Senior Advisers. They rally the troops - a vital function. But luckily, they don't make the sausage.

Posted by: willows1 | December 13, 2010 4:35 PM
===================================

I'll dig right back: How has Obama done with Bob Rubin's boys as his advisors?
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | December 13, 2010 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Sue:
Sorry honey, but I have little time on this mortal coil so I won't waste any of it responding to someone who needs to use a sexual slur to refer to political opponents.

drop the slur and we'll talk.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | December 13, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

ifthethunderdontgetya

I've never seen anyone make the argument that the "professional left" was responsible for 2010--could you point to a source?

Posted by: CTVoter | December 13, 2010 4:43 PM
======================================

I see those remarks from commenters on this blog, and Steve Benen's blog, frequently.

I'd compile a list of screengrabs to back that claim up, but this will have to wait until I'm not at work. If you'd like to try for yourself, google the term "firebagger".
~

Posted by: ifthethunderdontgetya | December 13, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

ifthethunder....

Of course I've heard the term "firebagger"--but I truthfully have never seen anyone argue that firebaggers are responsible for the "shellacking" last month. I've read many angry comments about 2012, but I don't know of a single blogger or commenter who has said that angry lefties staying home is the reason Dems had their asses handed to them last month.

Posted by: CTVoter | December 13, 2010 5:14 PM | Report abuse

ifthunderdontgetya - Overall, I think he's doing pretty good. Let me repeat that I enjoy the commentary of many on the Left and generally agree with their descriptions of the problems faced by our country. But the Professinal Left has displayed the most accurate political radar over the past few years. After Scott Brown was elected Josh Marshall said we had two weeks to pass HCR otherwise it wouldn't happen. It passed. But it took longer than two weeks. When the House decided not to vote on the Bush tax cuts before the election, Ezra Klein said they blew it irrevocably. Once the compromise plan came out, he decided that they had failed so hard that they succeeded somehow (?). People at MYDD have been agitating for a 2012 primary challenge to Obama for a year now. Instead Howard Dean comes out and says this would be extremely unwise. Who does that leave? Kucinich? Jane Hamsher knew (KNEW!) that Obama was doomed way back in 2008 and couldn't beat Hillary let alone McCain.

All this is to say that I think Obama & his advisors have a lot more on the ball than the blogosphere gives them credit for. I also think that liberals & Democrats more generally understand the realities of governing and are willing to accept less than complete societal overhaul in Obama's first two years.

Posted by: willows1 | December 13, 2010 5:18 PM | Report abuse

"But the Professinal Left has displayed the most accurate political radar over the past few years. After Scott Brown was elected Josh Marshall said we had two weeks to pass HCR otherwise it wouldn't happen. It passed. But it took longer than two weeks. When the House decided not to vote on the Bush tax cuts before the election, Ezra Klein said they blew it irrevocably. Once the compromise plan came out, he decided that they had failed so hard that they succeeded somehow (?)"

I agree with all that but the commentators you mention are Centrist Democrats, in my opinion. Is that what you mean by "the Professional Left"?

Posted by: wbgonne | December 13, 2010 5:50 PM | Report abuse

CTVoter:

Well, if it wasn't the Left that was responsible for the November shellacking what was it? Until the root causes are identified and addressed the solutions will be scarce.

Posted by: wbgonne | December 13, 2010 5:54 PM | Report abuse

wbgonne - Well, you left out MYDD and Jane Hamsher from the quote. But I think you raise a valid point that the ability to think outside of your own narrative seems to be more important than the relative liberalness or conservativeness of the commentator. Plus, there's an element in the Democratic party that just hasn't ever liked Obama for whatever reason.

Posted by: willows1 | December 13, 2010 6:03 PM | Report abuse

@Liam-still:

USA Today offers a potential reason for the discrepancy:

"Another nationwide survey released Monday, taken by the Pew Research Center, shows higher public support for the bill, 60%-22%. A possible reason: The USA TODAY question asked simply about "the agreement on taxes," while the Pew question described the deal as one that would extend tax cuts and unemployment benefits."

http://www.usatoday.com/news/washington/2010-12-13-poll-tax-cut-deal_N.htm?loc=interstitialskip

It seems that noting the inclusion of unemployment benefits substantially impacts public perceptions of the bill.

Furthermore, since the unemployment benefits are a substantial aspect of the package, USA Today's failure to note the inclusion of unemployment benefits undermines the usefulness (i.e., credibility) of this poll as a gauge of public sentiments about the package.

Posted by: associate20 | December 13, 2010 6:05 PM | Report abuse

@Gray62:

The 12% figure you noted is not specific to Democratic voters.

Pew doesn't give a breakdown of how strongly Democrats approve of the bill.

That said, it seems that Greg used "strong" as a synonym for substantial/unmistakeable/notable. There's no doubt that, as Greg noted according to the Pew poll, a clear majority of Democrats support the bill.

Posted by: associate20 | December 13, 2010 6:13 PM | Report abuse

As the Executive Director of the Democratic Party of Evanston, IL (Jan Schakowsky's home town) I can tell you that this frustration is not felt just by the "professional left" alone: many rank-and-file Dems out here are profoundly unhappy with the tax deal. These are folks who worked heart and soul for Barack -- and for the change we believed was essential -- from the very beginning, and who have continued to toil at the grassroots level for the President's policies and for Democratic candidates. Now they are heartsick over this deal and genuinely troubled by the suggestion that, as progressives whose commitment and grunt work undergirds the Democratic Party, they are suddenly too "sanctimonious" or they just don't understand how real politics works. (In fact even before this deal Dems here were uneasy about the Party's direction; see our post-midterm election survey here: http://dpoe.org/story/2010/12/04/we-hear-you-results-our-2010-survey ) Will Dems on the ground support the deal in the final analysis? Perhaps, but that's not the only question, is it? What also matters is the strength of their commitment to the Party and to this President. I'm not sure what the future holds, but the media (and the Democratic Party) ought to get out and talk to the real people who do the grassroots work to assess how deeply this feeling runs and what its implications might be. I don't just worry about what the polls say. I worry about motivating good Democrats to care enough to give us their time for the battles ahead. This deal, which imposes too much on the working poor while rewarding the rich and powerful, has little that will motivate our forces, and if progressives (and that's how regular Democrats here define themselves)continue to be insulted to boot, I wonder who will be left to make the calls and knock on the doors come 2012.

Posted by: PrairieStateProgressive | December 13, 2010 7:35 PM | Report abuse

@RainForestRising wrote:
"The rank-and-file are the ones with Conservative neighbors, who constantly ask how much Obama's Trillion dollar deficits and massive government programs are going to cost down the road."
.
Short answer: A whole lot less than Bush's deficits will cost us.
.
Re your straw man argument saying that the states have regulated healthcare for 200 years. You mention medical licenses. I didn't know that the Health Care Reform act covered medical licensing. Care to show where that is? oh yes, you can't because it doesn't touch that.
.
HCR is about 'insurance', not licensing doctors.

Posted by: rpixley220 | December 13, 2010 7:41 PM | Report abuse

re: the rank and file.
.
I consider myself pretty left wing. I don't *like* the current tax cut deal, but it's probably worth taking.
.
What the 'left' is most upset with is Obama compromises cutting them loose on just about every significant issue. Most of the final agreements are acceptable except for the fact that Obama didn't start with the Left position and negotiate from there. He started in the middle and went further 'right'. If HCR had started with public option/single payer and been negotiated down to the actual bill, there would be much less opposition from the Left about it.
.
Nothing grates anyone (left or right) more than thinking they could have gotten more from a deal than they did. Regardless of whether that deal is acceptable. That's what you're seeing with this opposition to the tax cut deal.

Posted by: rpixley220 | December 13, 2010 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Seriously, guys! Does anyone here understand how easily these polls were manipulated to get these results?

Polls like these are cooked for whomever wants and pays for them. We could as easily "prove" that aliens walk among us. The public is open to the concept and it is easy to get them to "go with the flow". Given a man in a white lab coat and Americans will electrocute a test subject to death.

Let's not call this proof. It's propaganda. Pure propaganda to support what the people with the money want. Sad, how easy relatively "intelligent" people can be manipulated. Substitute "pollster" for white lab coat and people would put catfood in their mother's mouth.

Posted by: rjmmcelroy | December 13, 2010 8:57 PM | Report abuse

Immanuel Kant wrote a book called the "Kritik der Reine Vernünft," the Critique of Pure Reason, the crux of which is that even the sharpest reasoning is invalid if based on false information.

For 30 years we've been getting a nonstop deluge of lies and propaganda about favoring the wealthy, including such clearly absurd notions that "cutting taxes increases revenue," and "taxation is bad for the economy," and "tax breaks for the wealthy create jobs."

If purportedly educated people "reason" that tax cuts for the wealthy will create jobs, despite the rock-solid evidence that this is horse feces, well, see my first paragraph.

Posted by: caothien9 | December 13, 2010 11:10 PM | Report abuse

"Given a man in a white lab coat and Americans will electrocute a test subject to death."

==

Ah, an educated man. Welcome, sir! You don't have a lot of company here.

Seen the Stanley Milgram films? There was one man refused to do it. That guy is my hero.

Posted by: caothien9 | December 13, 2010 11:13 PM | Report abuse

@ rpixley220: "RainForest Rising" is a mentally and physically disabled troll who has been banned from WaPo blogs dozens of times. We still refer to him by his original moniker "37thandOstreet," which I hear is the location of Georgetown U.

The guy is frothing bigot and a nuisance and likes to use up as much vertical space in the blog as some sort of distinction, a habit he's unable to break even when trying to conceal his identity to create an appearence of concurrence by supporting his own posts.

There is a script we use here to ignore trolls. My guess is that every single last user of the script blocks the 37th monikers first. Join us.

Posted by: caothien9 | December 13, 2010 11:21 PM | Report abuse

So, what is the proper role of the States in our political system? At some point, this question has to be answered. What areas have been reserved to the States??? It is not logical to allow the Federal powers to expand - because that is not what the Constitution provides for. In fact, the 10th Amendment provides for the exact opposition.
The liberals love to ignore the 2nd and 10th Amendments - however those Amendments have equal standing with all the other provisions of the Constitution.

.

Posted by: RainForestRising
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What you ignored the fact that Republicans have watered down the states' power that they can't do anything or is made irrelevant. Take, for example, the consumer protection for bank products. One state tried to introduce consumer protection on mortgage loans by barring prepayment penalties and making sure consumers have wherewithal to repay the loan. The bank's answer to that we are regulated by the federal regulator therefore we do not have to submit to your authority which the federal regulators agreed. Another example is CFMA legislation extended prohibition of states using bucket shop law to attack the derivative trade as gambling something that was prohibited in 1907. We all know how it came out in the end and who ended up paying for that.

Posted by: beeker25 | December 14, 2010 11:16 AM | Report abuse

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