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Posted at 12:00 PM ET, 12/ 7/2010

The Democrat blame game

By Jennifer Rubin

One senior House aide I talked to last night predicted rank-and-file Democrats would be "in riot mode" today. Whatever you call it -- circular firing squad? blame game? -- it's not pretty for the Democrats. The Post reports this morning:

Some liberal lawmakers and activists angrily attacked the Obama administration Monday night for striking a deal with Republicans on extending Bush-era tax rates, an issue that has the potential to worsen the divide between the White House and what it has called the "professional left."

ABC News's Jack Tapper reports on the flipside of what I 've been hearing on the Hill. The White House is now in a defensive crouch:

The White House has two arguments for what they acknowledge are "frustrated" Democrats:

1) We wanted a fight on these tax cuts, and Congressional Democrats never took up the charge and held a vote;

2) This is a good deal -- and we weren't willing to let taxes go up on middle class Americans, or to deprive the unemployed of insurance benefits, just to prove a political point.

"We wanted a fight, the House didn't throw a punch," a senior White House official tells ABC News, pointing out that for months before the 2010 midterm elections, President Obama was making the case against the Bush tax cuts for wealthier Americans. "The House wouldn't vote before the Senate, and the Senate was afraid they'd lose a vote on it."

"It was like the Jets versus Sharks except there weren't any Jets," the official said. "Senator Schumer says he wants a fight? He couldn't hold his caucus together."

There is something to that. The point of the Senate votes over the weekend was not merely to provide a feel good moment for the left. It was, presumably, to demonstrate that the Senate had bargaining leverage. But, oops. It didn't. The Senate wound up underlining the lack of options for the White House.

But the left is also out of options. "How does the left keep Obama 'honest' without a credible primary threat?" a plugged-in Democrat mused this morning. Good question. If your party loses an election, loses the House majority, faces an effective center-right majority in the Senate and doesn't have a primary challenge, there really isn't much to do other than complain. That's partly why there is so much of it coming from the left this morning.

By Jennifer Rubin  | December 7, 2010; 12:00 PM ET
Categories:  Senate Democrats, Taxes  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Reaction to the payroll tax holiday
Next: The danger of talking to Iran


Ms. Rubin, are you AFRAID to have a photo accompany your blog?

Posted by: edismae | December 7, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

'cause, if you are, like John Roberts locking the front door of the Supreme Court, you need to stay home and write privately.

Posted by: edismae | December 7, 2010 1:08 PM | Report abuse

OBAMA surrendered TIMIDLY
Yes, Obama did not wait for the best deal from the Tea Party hawks, who received more than 700 billion dollar deficit financed tax relief for the wealthiest from the bankrupted nation. There was nothing wrong in allowing Republicans to use their negative power for this matter. If the tax on all would have gone up by 3% sky could not have fallen. It would have helped the nation to receive more than a trillion dollar additional tax revenue at the time we are facing economical bankruptcy. The middle class could have received their due from the frustrated Republicans in January, so what?
Obama has damaged the moral and unity of democrats by accepting the surrender rather than waiting for another 3 weeks or a month.
If Obama can get panicky in such a small deal, what he can do if Russia, China or any other Country will really show up their strength? He is a very weak President and does not deserve more than one term. Even one term was a MISTAKE.

Posted by: citysoilverizonnet | December 7, 2010 1:23 PM | Report abuse

The democrats have morphed into the DEAD AGENDA SOCIETY

- debating the fine details of policies which have no relevance

- debating the fine details of policies which have no chance of becoming law

- debating the fine details of a liberal world which does not exist and will never exist.

Democrats: Keep on debating yourselves.

You can't raise taxes in the middle of an Economic Crisis - it just proves how out of touch the entire DEAD AGENDA SOCIETY is.

Posted by: RainForestRising | December 7, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse


It is clear to me that the democrats all are KICKING AND SCREAMING to this Compromise

What an unbelievably CHILDISH reaction to what was CLEARLY a campaign commitment.

Where were all these democrats when Obama was saying "compromise and bipartisanship" in 2008 ??? They were in the AUDIENCE, CHEERING - and the American People is sick of hearing these democrats who are all going BACK on what was CLEARLY their OWN party's platform in 2008.

The country doesn't want to hear it.

Even worse, the democrats today are destroying all the credibility they might have left in the country. If they can not be mature about a compromise, then the country is done with the democrats.


Posted by: RainForestRising | December 7, 2010 1:35 PM | Report abuse

Let's call it for what it is: Democrats, Want To Spend Someone Elses Money. Look People. Government Spending = Our Taxes. Why do you want to give your money away to someone else, to determine, what it is best spent on?? Don't you like spending your own money?, -without some beauracrat leaning into your pocket,and taking out your "dollars and change",-to spend on something you don't want him or her to spend it on??- It's Our Money. Its not "some corporation or rich guy's money". It is Ours! Gas Tax, Income Tax, Sales Tax,Property Tax,Fees,Charges,Fines, and Fares.- Why not spend your "dollars and change",on what you like, and we will spend our "dollars and change", on what we like.

Posted by: stormpost | December 7, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

It is Ours!
Posted by: stormpost

Inflation costs you a lot more than taxes,why aren't you screaming about that? LOL
Answer:Because the Conservatives and the Liberals both support the Monetary system that creates Inflation,so DENIAL DENIAL DENIAL

Posted by: rcaruth | December 7, 2010 2:36 PM | Report abuse

The "bitter loser" tone Obama is adopting regarding his capitulation on taxes makes him look small and weak. He should adopt the classic advice, "When they're running you out of town, act like you're leading a parade". Elections matter and Obama is no longer running things.

If the Republicans can control the lame duck session, wait until they control the House and have ideological control of the Senate. Republicans control the money now. It's up to them to act responsibly and to impose discipline on the radical spendthrift Obama.

Posted by: eoniii | December 7, 2010 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Jennifer better be hot, or us Democrats are going to mock her and say snarky stuff about her.

Posted by: danw1 | December 7, 2010 4:47 PM | Report abuse

To any lefty inclined to engage in idiotic personal attacks on Jennifer based on her looks, when you don't even know what she looks like: I can assure you she is hot. Just like Sarah Palin. I can't imagine what you are going to do with that.

Posted by: Larry3435 | December 7, 2010 8:08 PM | Report abuse

"...there really isn't much to do other than complain."

And this is what liberals do so well. If there was a moment of absolute honesty, liberals would agree that they would prefer being the whiny minority rather than the governing majority.

Posted by: johnhiggins1990 | December 7, 2010 11:35 PM | Report abuse

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