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Obama lays out 2010 strategy to Senate Democrats

1. President Obama spoke to -- and took questions from -- his former Democratic Senate colleagues on Thursday, the second time in a week that he has conducted a question-and-answer session with members of Congress. Unlike last week's tété-a-tété with House Republicans, which the White House believes was a critical pivot point heading into the midterm elections, the questions Obama received were largely friendly and the mood generally upbeat. Missed it? Here's what you need to know: 1) Like his state of the union speech, Obama was unyielding in his insistence that Democrats are expected to lead and produce results. "Those problems haven't gone away," he said at one point. "It's still our responsibility to address them . . . we still have to lead. At another moment, Obama said that the lesson from Democrats loss in Massachusetts was "not to do nothing . . . the American people are out of patience with business as usual." 2) Of the eight senators who asked questions of the president, seven are up for reelection in the fall. Of that group, six -- Sens. Arlen Specter (Pa.), Michael Bennet (Colo.), Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.), Barbara Boxer (Calif.) and Evan Bayh (Ind.) -- are being aggressively targeted by Republicans. In other words, the questions were not randomly selected. 3) Bennet, Lincoln and Bayh all asked variations on the same question: How can Democrats effectively make the case that they are accomplishing real change in Washington. "This place looks broken to the American people," said Bennet; "People are out there watching us, they see us nothing more than Democrats and Republicans up here fighting," said Lincoln. (It's worth noting that Bennett, Lincoln and Bayh all come from states where they must win conservative-leaning independents to get reelected. 4) Perhaps previewing a line of attack against Republicans in the fall, the president repeatedly brought up the GOP filibuster threats to blame the minority party for impeding progress. He noted that the Senate cast more cloture votes in 2009 than it did in the 1950 and 1960s combined and that on a number of measures where cloture had to be invoked to end debate and bring the bill to a vote the legislation eventually passed overwhelmingly. "What that indicates is a degree to which [Republicans] are just trying to gum up the works instead of getting business done," said Obama. 5) On several occasions, he acknowledged the difficulty of the political environment and mistakes he had made. "I know these are tough times to hold office," he said. "I'm there in the arena with you." (Some congressional Democrats and party strategists undoubtedly rolled their eyes on that one.) On health care, which he insisted the Senate must find a way to pass, Obama admitted that in the final push to pass the bill "some of that transparency got lost . . . and I think we paid a price for it."

2. Former Indiana senator Dan Coats (R) took a preliminary step toward a challenge to Sen. Evan Bayh (D) this fall, announcing in a statement that he had authorized supporters to begin collecting signatures to get him on the ballot. Before the ink was dry on that statement, however, the two national parties were already working furiously to define both Coats and Bayh. First came the report by Politico's Ben Smith that Coats had been a Virginia resident for the last decade. Then came a detailed dossier from the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee of the clients Coats had represented as a federally registered lobbyist; "Indianans won't ignore Dan Coats' decade as a lobbyist working the system to gain special favors for the banking industry at the time of financial collapse and at the expense of working Americans." Pushback came quickly from the Republican side in the form of a dossier detailing Bayh's dearth of trips back to his home state and a promise to make his wife's memberships on several corporate boards an issue in the race. Democrats' aggressiveness is likely an attempt to force Coats to reconsider his decision to run but Republicans insist he is in the race to stay.

3. A week after Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden decided against running for his father's Senate seat, Newcastle County Executive Chris Coons (D) announced his candidacy with the backing of the state and national party. "With Chris's entrance into the race, Delawareans will face a choice between a proven reformer who has created an engine of economic growth and a longtime Washington insider who has voted with the special interests," said Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee Chairman Bob Menendez (N.J.) Coons, elected to his current post in 2004, begins the open seat race against Rep. Mike Castle (R) as a significant underdog. Castle has held statewide office in the First State since 1980 and ended 2009 with $1.7 million in the bank. Both the Cook Political Report and the Rothenberg Political Report rate the race as likely to switch parties in the fall and polling, too suggests Castle is in the driver's seat.

4. Votevets.org, a liberal outside group, is dropping $2 million on a seven-state ad campaign pushing a collection of senators -- and candidates for Senate -- to support clean energy legislation in Congress. The ads, which are running against Sens. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Dick Lugar (R-Ind.), Evan Bayh (D-Ind.). Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), John Thune (R-S.D.) and John Barasso (R-Wyo.) as well as Reps. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) and Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), feature local veterans discussing the need for energy independence through the lens of the failed terrorist bombing of an airplane on Christmas Day in Detroit. The ads also detail both the Senators' opposition to a "bipartisan clean energy bill" and the amount of money they have each taken from the oil industry. "Senator, it's time to put America's security ahead of your own politics," the veteran says at the end of the ad. While the White House insists that passing an energy bill through the Senate is a top priority this year, it's not clear that the chamber has the political will to do so -- particularly with the health care bill still facing an uncertain fate.

5. Former Wisconsin governor Tommy Thompson (R) signed on as an adviser to a hedge fund on Wednesday, a move that seems to indicate he is likely to take a pass on a challenge to Sen. Russ Feingold (D) this fall. "Thompson will be relied upon at Peak Ridge for his expertise in agriculture and agribusiness," reads a story on Thompson's hiring. Coming off of their recruiting success in Indiana where former senator Dan Coats (R) appears set to challenge Sen. Evan Bayh (D) this fall, national Republicans set their sights on Thompson due to his long record of electoral success -- four consecutive terms! -- in the Badger State. Assuming Thompson is out, Republicans may well turn to former representative Mark Neumann. Neumann is currently running for governor but faces an uphill primary fight against Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker. Neumann ran for the Senate in 1998 against Feingold but lost narrowly. Republican strategists note that the filing deadline in Wisconsin isn't until July, meaning that even if Thompson and Neumann decide against the race, there is still plenty of time to find a credible alternative to Feingold.

By Chris Cillizza  |  February 4, 2010; 5:42 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Fix  
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Next: Bill O'Reilly vs Jon Stewart (VIDEO)

Comments

Everyone in the House of Representatives and the Senate should be returned to life in the districts they have decided not to represent.
They can open a store and work, make a payroll for that matter.
The Fanny and Freddy conspirators should be arrested.

Posted by: RayOne | February 7, 2010 1:44 PM | Report abuse

Very interesting article, and comments to boot. I think one big problem we have today is out of context sound bites getting in the way of real and effective journalism. There a PBS show airing this Saturday that actually gives people and pundits the chance to interact and debate. This hour show has interesting topic and actually showcases both sides of the coin.

http://www.weta.org/tv/programsatoz/program/72555
This links to the program days, times, and topics.

Posted by: youngva | February 5, 2010 10:05 AM | Report abuse

I do blame Democrats for voting in favor of Invading Iraq.

By that time Bush had been in office long enough they knew his word wasn't worth spit, they should have assumed he was lying.

At least now everyone knows that Republicans are liars first, citizens last. And traitors all.

Posted by: Noacoler | February 4, 2010 8:41 PM | Report abuse


JRM2


So, you are complaining that the Republicans are not voting with Obama, in his insane plan to bury this country under mountains of debt with his health care plan.

_______

Well, would you rather have a situation in which the democrats voted WITH Bush on the Iraqi war, sent thousands of troops to fight and die in Iraq -

AND then - the democrats a few years later, after troops had died, SWITCHED their position, and started complaining about Bush up and down - and making it seem like he did it all by himself.


Not mentioning once how many democrats voted FOR THE WAR>

Would you rather have that?


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | February 4, 2010 8:14 PM | Report abuse

JRM2


You forgot to mention his accent.

.

Posted by: 37thand0street | February 4, 2010 8:09 PM | Report abuse

Any Romney op has to include hordes of beautiful Mormon children showing their six year molars and eyes Disney bright, lined up like one of those TV singing families.

Millions of Americans will die of vomiting

Posted by: Noacoler | February 4, 2010 7:48 PM | Report abuse

Romney, like Reagan, is photo-shopped already, so he is ready for the role:
Acting Presidential. I'll bet he not only has their exact location specified, but he maintains an exact count of the number of grey hairs he allows when doing a photo op.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 4, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

The Next Republican President:
Will not be able to use a teleprompter.
Will need to produce his/her long-form birth certificate.
Will have to be conscious of his/her selection of mustards.
Can expect to not get a single Democrat vote for anything, even on bills that Democrats sponsor.
Will be judged, dissected and then have the facts distorted.
Won't be able to travel on Air Force One for any reason without being criticized for it.
Will have racist remarks, cartoons and photoshopped images distributed by public officials.

anyone want to add to this list?

Posted by: JRM2 | February 4, 2010 5:58 PM | Report abuse

When Ped finally does open his eyes, all she sees is pillow, headboard and wall.

Posted by: Moonbat | February 4, 2010 5:47 PM | Report abuse

THE COUNTRY IS NOW SAFER FROM OBAMA NOW THAT SCOTT BROWN HAS BEEN SWORN IN

THE COUNTRY IS NOW SAFER -

THE WORLD IS NOW A BETTER PLACE


THE SUN IS SHINING


THE SKIES ARE BLUE - EVERYTHING IS GOING TO BE OK.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | February 4, 2010 5:19 PM | Report abuse

Be sure to tell the doctors about your visions, zouk.

When I close my eyes all I see is red from light coming through my eyelids.

Posted by: Noacoler
------------------------------------------
All NeoComs see red.

Posted by: leapin | February 4, 2010 5:18 PM | Report abuse


THE COUNTRY IS NOW SAFER FROM OBAMA NOW THAT SCOTT BROWN HAS BEEN SWORN IN

THE COUNTRY IS NOW SAFER -


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | February 4, 2010 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Be sure to tell the doctors about your visions, zouk.

When I close my eyes all I see is red from light coming through my eyelids.

Posted by: Noacoler | February 4, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Someone dig up footage of Bush on his way to the podium and tell me with a straight face that my description isn't spot on.

Watch his eyes too. NOT a man in his element.

Posted by: Noacoler | February 4, 2010 4:51 PM | Report abuse

elijah24 Year one is a complete failure

What are you talking about ???

The American People won by stopping Obama and the liberals from destroying the country.

And the liberals are still being crybabies about it.

WAAAAAA AAAWAAAAAA AAAAAAWWAAAAAA


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | February 4, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse

When you close your eyes and daydream, you may see ice cream cones, sailboats, beaches, bikinis, flowers, clouds, etc.

Ped sees:

coke bottle stuck up his rear

playgrounds ...and young rectums

and don't forget the red hot poker all the way up

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 4:43 PM | Report abuse

Poor Ped. with Jake absent, no one will pay attention. there's always the blow up "companion". Instead he projects his desires on a blog. fixated leapin.

Did anyone notice that without at least two of the three stooges present, they flounder and can't mount a capable cut and paste of hate and envy?

And to think this site used to be the liberal loon mutual admiration society. Intelligence and fact seems to have driven the demon out.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

It is AN EXCELLENT POINT


Rahm was calling the liberals retarded

AND THE RETARDED PEOPLE ARE UPSET ABOUT THE COMPARISON !!!!


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | February 4, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Know what the best part is? Obama walks to the podium like he belongs there, not like Bush who needed a 12-step program in appearing "take charge" and still walked like he had a coke bottle stuck up his rear.
Posted by: Noacoler
-----------------------------------------
A lot of anal fixation today. Perhaps due to the bass ackwards nature of BHO and his statist policies.

Posted by: leapin | February 4, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Leapin,
In all fairness, OBL did request that Berry stop locking up his followers in Gitmo and release them back to Yemen where they can get back to work. He also requested that air passengers stop being hasseled so that they may pass onto America bound planes worry free. He seems to have been able to convince berry to just leave Iran alone to build its bomb and Korea to build the missiles.

Who knew OBL would make such a powerful homeland security Czar.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Leapin, have the oceans stopped rising yet? I am going to purchase some waterfront property in Kansas unless berry actually accomplishes this.
Posted by: drivl
----------------------------------------
I don’t know if the oceans have stopped rising yet. However, Osama bin Laden has joined the D party due to its stance on global warming. If Beery doesn’t accomplish what he says I believe OBL is going to be disappointed and may turn that disappointment into a recruitment tool. Just as he was becoming a tolerant progressive.

Posted by: leapin | February 4, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

I guess we should be glad that drivl puts so very many hours every day into posting here ... it keeps him away from the playgrounds, I'm sure there are mothers and young rectums all over DC that are grateful.

Hope nobody actually *reads* that stuff though.

Posted by: Noacoler | February 4, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

It seems giving more than one speech every day is still insufficient to fool, er, I mean convince, no make that illuminate the benefits of a giant government takeover of health care, complete with free abortions for illegal aliens and death panels for grandma.

so what if we lock up college kids who can't pay the premiums for grandma. this society is about socking it to the young.

now you're new government sponsored plan will only pay for either Dr Suess or Dr Demento. the part about keeping your previous doctor was just campaign talk.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 4:24 PM | Report abuse

We knew that the filth were going to have fits when a black man won over daffy John McCain and his idiot VP.

But I don't think anyone expected that the real sore spot for them would be that he can give a good speech. Wow that has them ties into knots. He uses correct grammar? Doesn't drop his Gs? What an outrage! We need us a good ol' boy up thar!

Suck it up, filth.

Know what the best part is? Obama walks to the podium like he belongs there, not like Bush who needed a 12-step program in appearing "take charge" and still walked like he had a coke bottle stuck up his rear.

Posted by: Noacoler | February 4, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

I think berry should proceed on a matter of urgent proportions and considering his skills, appropriate for some actual accomplishment.

they need to immediately move to alter the College basketball playoff rules. forget all that budget and war nonsense.

After that, he could help me return a bad electronic device I bought. Start off small and count his successes. It's about time for the first one to arrive.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

10% unemployment instead of 8%.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

In liberal land, you can take a bunch of money from the successful, pass it through the greedy hands of the big liberal government, carve out about half to feed the beast and process the paperwork, then pass it along to someone that needs a job.

No consideration is needed that the original successful person may have been willing to hire someone without the intervention of the preferred targeted jobs, you know, like ACORN workers, union bosses, GM executives, social workers, trial lawyers, used car salesmen, government bureaucrats and other leeches on society.

these Soviets then declare that millions, no thousands, well the numbers are foggy, of jobs have been saved and created.

then the numbers are released that millions have been lost.

no fear, EVERYONE agrees that Barry is the savior. He just needs to give a few more speeches so we all understand properly.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Obama is once again worrying about civility and Rahm is promising to stop calling people retarded, apparently because it hurt the feelings of people who are retarded (developmentally delayed is the PC euphemism) when he compared them to liberals.

Seriously folks, I don't think the Democrats realize what they are up against.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 4, 2010 4:05 PM | Report abuse

Poor zouk, not enough to tell him once, or twice, or a dozen times, the information just can’t sink in.  I guess that’s what they call conservatives, though I think “retention” is more accurate than “conserving.”
 
Yeah Obama dumped a few hundred million into the economy to reduce the effect of Bush’s deregulatory recession.  And as Elijah said, all analyses say it’s working; the recession would have been much deeper otherwise.  And yes we went into debt to stimulate the economy, but hey, we got something out of it.  10% unemployment instead of 18% or worse.
 
What did we get out of the many trillions spent on Bush’s wars?  We got an Iraq that went from a secular dictatorship of no threat to us at all to an Iraq that’s a vast terrorist training camp and a client state of Iran.  And by taking his eye off the ball, Bush let Osama get away, let the Taliban surge in Pakistan and Afghanistan.  Yeah, THAT was worth a few trillion bucks, but at least he got to wear his flightsuit.

Posted by: Noacoler | February 4, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Liberals, in their diapers, are throwing a tantrum that the Repubs have stopped them in their progressive tracks.

Unfortunately, this notion, like most liberal claims, is replete with fiction. Democrats control both houses by large margins and could pass anything they agree on without a single Repub.

their own incompetence has lead to this quigmire, yet they still try to point the finger of blame at anyone but the actual leaders, berry, herry and ninny.

In Lib land, leader means "person in charge of finding someone else to blame". It is the foundation for their entire bitter victimology based on envy and hate of success.

berry hates success so much he refuses to be associated with the idea at all.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

stimulate the economy, which every major study says is working

chant with me now.....

Mmmmmm mmmm mmmmmm


Love to see the link for that. probably goes directly to the loons at Kos.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

nothing he has done has yet ruined us

Well there is that 1.3 trillion spending binge. there is that letting Iran get the bomb. there is that pulling missiles from Poland and encouraging russia to get belligerant. there is that EPa ruing the economy thing. there is that terrorist with all US rights thing.

shall I continue?

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

"Gitmo is far from being actually closed. Obama saying he is closing it doesn't make it closed and can't be considered an accomplishment."
==
Fine. By that same rule, nothing he has done has yet ruined us, so you cant consider them failures either. So y'wanna call year 1 a draw? or are you a hypocrite?

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Zoukeeny, are we supposed to forget that Republicans are acting like spoiled toddlers and doing everything they can to keep the President from accomplishing anything?

How effective do you think you are at manipulating national perceptions by posting in these comments alongside mentally retarded conservatives like 37th and Suzy and Jake?

Especially when Cillizza is doing the same thing and not fooling anyone?

Posted by: Noacoler | February 4, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Leapin, have the oceans stopped rising yet? I am going to purchase some waterfront property in Kansas unless berry actually accomplishes this.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 3:43 PM | Report abuse

The FBI thing was a reference to one of the Scrivener's posts.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 4, 2010 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Drivl, the only thing you just said that can be in any way verified is the line about the deficit, and that is part of the plan. We had to increce the deficit in order to stimulate the economy, which every major study says is working. Our allies were exasperated during the Bush admin. Our enemies were invigorated during the Bush admin. You NEVER gave PRESIDENT OBAMA the benefit of the doubt. The moment you heard his name and saw a (D) next to it, you were sure that he would be a failure in every way. I don't believe for one second that you ever gave him a chance. You are a hater. I don't like the word, but it's really the only one that fits. You hate him and all other liberals, and you assume the worst in all of us. Because of that, your opinion of us and what we should do has absolutely no weight. Why should the President do what you think he should? You will never respect him anyway?

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

BB, back when I was majoring in Chemistry I believe they referred to what you do as Physical Chemistry.  I breezed through the first two years never cracking a book, I’d learned so much by reading in high school, but then came the third year, PChem, and, I kid you not, I thought I was in the wrong room.  It was all math, and math that was way over my head.  I switched to Astronomy (reading that chemists weren’t getting jobs wasn’t real motivating), tested into the Junior level classes, incurring no loss, breezed through the first two semesters, then it happened again: insufficient math.  So guess what I finally got a degree in.
 
In my work I barely even use algebra, though I’ve come up with a few designs that made use of number theory, not that I got any of that in college.  But it does help reading physics.  I only wish I’d gone further into grad school because General Relativity is pretty damned hard for me.

Posted by: Noacoler | February 4, 2010 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Leapin, all of your accusations are based on evidence that is just as flimsey if not more so. the difference is that I give the president (any president, hence the lowercase "p") the benefit of the doubt, while you assume that if he is not on "your side" his decisions must all be disasterous and malicious.

Posted by: elijah24 |
------------------------------------------
Gitmo is far from being actually closed. Obama saying he is closing it doesn't make it closed and can't be considered an accomplishment.

Posted by: leapin | February 4, 2010 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Elijah, we are way past the benfit of the doubt phase for berry. He has turned a slight bump into a major downturn. He has spent triple the baseline. He has turned off the opposing party. He has exasperated our allies and invogorated our enemies. he has lied countless times to gain affection. In short he is totally and utterly unaccomplished as the polls and votes clearly indicate.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

For the FBI story, refer to scrivener's 8:52 AM post. Or, better yet, don't.

Posted by: Blarg | February 4, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Technically, Mark, I'm a chemical physicist. ;-) I'll check out Shrink's link, though the synopsis sounds about right. The government can't take over 1/6 of the economy, because it already controls over half of that. The health care bill amount to several percent of the economy. Significant, but not the end of capitalism as leapin et al. thinks he/she knows it.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 4, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

I never got an answer on the FBI thing, Mark. I'm still pretty curious about that myself.

Leapin, all of your accusations are based on evidence that is just as flimsey if not more so. the difference is that I give the president (any president, hence the lowercase "p") the benefit of the doubt, while you assume that if he is not on "your side" his decisions must all be disasterous and malicious.

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

His decisions and policies have kept us out of depression, and now have us starting to recover from his predecessor's recession. He signed the fair pay act. Gitmo will soon be closed. We will soon vacate Iraq. We are now finally committed to winning the war that was justified. He has handled small military crises like the somalli pirates, larger military crises like Afghanistan, and natural disasters like the earthquake in Haiti.
------------------------------------------
All a lib has to do is talk about something with little or disputable action and it is considered "accomplished". I wish I could do that at my job.

Posted by: leapin | February 4, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

I drop in and see the first sentence of the article remains in the timewarp of reporting an event from yesterday as occurring today.

I see Shrink posted the most amazing article - I hope those of you who have been discussing health care saw the link and read it. Apparently, by next year, more than half of all health care spending in America will be from and by the federal government. This is without passage of a UHC plan.

I see that our nuclear physicist, BB, explained compound interest calculation.

Elijah, I missed the FBI agent story. What was that all about? Was it posted here?

And back to margaret's first post - organizations like "vote.vets", and similar inventions across the political spectrum will be forced to make some kind of "meaningful disclosure" in the age of "Citizens United".
I suspect that disclosure will be a reference to a web site. Good luck with that.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | February 4, 2010 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Zouk is so over-the-top malevolent that it’s hard to regard him as anything but comical.  Like some nasty little child from a Cruikshank illustration sitting in the corner with his face twisted into a snarl, muttering constantly, chanting the same few hate-dripping phrases over and over and over, punctuated only by demands to be respected in the form of extravagant boasts.  Yeah, the staggeringly successful and brilliant executive in his $3 million townhouse across the street from the Supreme Court …
 
… spending all day cutting and pasting out of right-wing bar rags into a right-wing blog.  Sure, makes sense.  I mean, if I were as accomplished as zouk, why, I wouldn’t doing anything frivolous like traveling and enjoying life and getting lots of satisfying sex, I’d be doing the same thing he is .. raging and raging and raging and coming up with scintillating satire like “Hopey McChange.”  The very apotheosis of a life well spent.
 
Thanks for always noting my arrival, zouk, I feel like Norm walking into Cheers. 

Posted by: Noacoler | February 4, 2010 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Well, your combining two seperate issues. I said everyone needs some therapy (IMO) because everyone is broken in some way.
The defense of President Barack Hussein Obama in spite of a bad first year, is (at least in my case) because for all the bad press, he has accomplished a lot. His decisions and policies have kept us out of depression, and now have us starting to recover from his predecessor's recession. He signed the fair pay act. Gitmo will soon be closed. We will soon vacate Iraq. We are now finally committed to winning the war that was justified. He has handled small military crises like the somalli pirates, larger military crises like Afghanistan, and natural disasters like the earthquake in Haiti. I was never dumb enough to think I would love everthing he does. I don't. but his first year was not as bad as the conservative media would have us to believe.
Also, Reagan, Kennedy, Roosevelt and Lincoln all had bad first years. All recovered and are now hailed by one faction or another as some of our best presidents. I gave Bush 6 years before i gave up and called him a moron. Does Obama not deserve the same benefit of the doubt?

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

I think we could all use a little therapy.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

when you hang around liberals, that statement becomes glaringly true.

but tell me why no one ever gets better? consider the loons on this board who still defend barry despite the long trail of failure?

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

The democrats have destroyed their own chances for health care reform.

The democrats have to really look at themselve more than anywhere else for the debacle - including their lack of bipartisanship.

HOWEVER THERE IS ANOTHER POINT - every election, the democrats run around to seniors and tell them that the Republicans want to take away their social security benefits.

This democratic tactic has poisoned so much of our political system.

NOW - the democrats want to create a system in which a whole new set of people get government benefits - AND many democrats have said that they want to be able to go around at election time and say to people - you have to vote democratic because the Republicans want to take away your health care benefits.

The democrats create a system that is under-funded and irresponsible - AND then they blame the other side for wanting to get the programs fiscally balanced.

Well - why would the Republicans WANT to go along with that plan ??? Why would the Republicans want to create a situation in which the democrats are going to use an issue in election after election ???

THIS IS HOW HEALTH CARE REFORM DIED.

The democrats are selfish - they are NOT interested in health care - they are just using it for votes - and they want to create a system to get them votes in the future.

ALL while Obama is saying he is the most bipartisan guy since sliced bread.

The democrats destroyed health care - plain and simple.

Anything else said is a bunch of lies.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | February 4, 2010 2:15 PM | Report abuse

I think we could all use a little therapy. That said, I think you need my services as much as any of them.

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

Thanks, sliowa, the data surprised me as well. I agree that picking the mid-70s as a starting point artificially lifts the inflation rate. '84 would be a decent starting point as it eliminates the '82 recession.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 4, 2010 1:58 PM | Report abuse

you could have a very lucrative practice by just treating dribbl, chrissy foxxy, Loud and Dumb and DDAWD. Of course since none of them are productive members of society, you will have to get Barry to pay.

But it looks like your whole career will involve trying to worm money out of the government. so your views are understandable.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 1:54 PM | Report abuse

psychology

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 1:52 PM | Report abuse

my point (and more importantly, the Presidents point) was that by calling an entire initiative like health-care socialist, by painting the president as a comunist, fascist, weak on terror, unamerican, or any of the other sweeping and over the top slurs that the right is using now (and yes, that the left has used in the past, though never to this degree), even when Dems bring a plan to the table that Republicans WANT to go along with, they have painted themselves into a political corner, with their voters so that they cant. It makes for good politics, but it is terrible for governing and legislating.

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Communications, right?

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 1:46 PM | Report abuse

Chris


Maybe you can look into the Washington Post archives - there was a massive budget battle within the Eisenhower administration in 58 or 59 - because the projected deficit was going to go over ONE billion dollars.

Goes to show how different things are.


The cabinet went insane - there was a massive fight - and maybe resignations - over a deficit of one billion dollars.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | February 4, 2010 1:43 PM | Report abuse

elijah24


Yes, a great deal of people looked at Obama's health care plan and said that it was socialist - that is true.


However, one must remember that the democrats themselves have stated that they hoped that Obama's plan would evolve into a single-payer system.


Obama's plan involved taxing one set of people - and giving subsidies to another set of people - sounds pretty socialist.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | February 4, 2010 1:32 PM | Report abuse

That is an extremely good point: blaming the Republicans is not going to get Obama very far.


Obama has already blamed Bush for practically everything, including the weather.


peterg73 is right - the American people are against these policies - so in a sense, Obama is blaming the American people and that is not going to work.


.

Posted by: 37thand0street | February 4, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

I think you got your acronyms mixed up, but assuming that by "GED",you actually mean PhD., I will.

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 1:25 PM | Report abuse

elijah, when you finally get that GED come back and let us know.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Obama tells National Prayer Breakfast that there's a growing sense that "something is broken."

Ever look in the mirror and really see?

and I don't meant hose adoring swooning looks of narcissist.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

He is a black man with a middle name that is similar to one of the most hated men our nation has ever known. He comes from poverty, no legacy, not even much time in politics, which his critics never cease to hold against him. yet he won an overwhelming electoral victory over a legacy candidate, with a great POW story, a long history in the Senate. He also beat the "heir apparent" of his own party, who is also a legacy candidate, the wife of a former extremely popular president and has her own good story.
I think he can handle Tic Tac Toe.

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 1:02 PM | Report abuse

Obama's strategy for Fall is to point out that the republicans are blocking legislation that is unpopular with a sizeable majority of Americans? This guy would probably lose at tic-tac-toe.

Posted by: peterg73 | February 4, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Adopting the pose of limpid nonpartisanship, Obama repeatedly accused Republicans of horrible things using his peculiar straw-man technique.

He told Republicans he was "absolutely committed" to working with them, "but it can't just be political assertions that aren't substantiated."

Can Obama please name a single "unsubstantiated" political assertion by a Republican before wasting everyone's time by instructing Republicans to stop making them?

I can name a few from Obama!

How about the whopper he told about national health care not covering illegal aliens? Or the one about it not covering abortions?

Weeks after Obama made those unsubstantiated political assertions before a joint session of Congress, Democrats were in death-match battles with Republicans (and some moderate Democrats) who tried to exclude coverage for illegals and abortion from the very bills Obama said never contained such coverage in the first place.

How about Obama's claim in his State of the Union address last week that a recent Supreme Court ruling would allow "foreign corporations to spend without limit in our elections"?

In the case Obama mentioned, the court overruled section 441a of the campaign-finance law, which had banned all corporate spending on elections. The case did not concern, nor did the court address, section 441e, which prohibits foreign corporations from making any "contribution or donation of money or other thing of value ... in connection with a Federal, State or local election."

History will record that these remarks from his State of the Union address were the only case legendary barrister Barack Obama ever argued before the Supreme Court. And he lost.

Even when presented with a short, straightforward, simply stated question by Rep. Mike Pence, Obama couldn't help but to formulate a different question.

Pence asked: "Mr. President, will you consider supporting across-the-board tax relief, as President Kennedy did?"

The question Obama wanted Pence to ask was: Mr. President, will you join Republicans in cutting taxes of billionaires?

Luckily, Obama's reformulation gave him an opening for a killer answer: "What you may consider across-the-board tax cuts could be, for example, greater tax cuts for people who are making a billion dollars. I may not agree to a tax cut for Warren Buffett."

Republicans should take that answer and run like a thief in the night! OK, let's cut taxes on everyone except billionaires. I'd even support a specific tax expressly on Warren Buffett. Now, son, how much will you give us for these magic beans?

AnneC

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

The global warming movement as we have known it is dead," writes Walter Russell Mead of the Council on Foreign Relations in The American Interest. "The movement died from two causes: bad science and bad politics."

Some decades hence, I suspect, people will look back and wonder why so many government, corporate and media elites were taken in by propaganda that was based on such shoddy and dishonest evidence. And taken in to the point that they advocated devoting trillions of dollars to a cause that was based on flagrant dishonesty and dissembling.

The secular religion of global warming has all the elements of a religious faith: original sin (we are polluting the planet), ritual (separate your waste for recycling), redemption (renounce economic growth) and the sale of indulgences (carbon offsets). We are told that we must have faith (all argument must end, as Al Gore likes to say) and must persecute heretics (global warming skeptics are like Holocaust deniers, we are told).

People in the grip of such a religious frenzy evidently feel justified in lying, concealing good evidence and plucking bad evidence from whatever flimsy source may be at hand.

The rest of us, and judging from polls that includes most of the American people, are free to follow a more rational path. In his State of the Union Address, Barack Obama alluded to "the overwhelming evidence on climate change." But he felt obliged to add, "even if you doubt the evidence" -- an admission that the evidence is less than overwhelming. On a par with, it seems, the claims of trial lawyers and the assurances of used car salesmen.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

drivl, do you know who the Bolshevics were? Marxists. Are you seriously trying to say that nobody has compared national health care, to socialism/marxism/communism?
It seems to me that the conservative strategy is to throw every imaginable (and usually unfounded) criticism at him, then when he answers the charge, deny it was ever thrown.

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 12:27 PM | Report abuse

Promising to close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay; initially planning to try 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in New York; broadcasting supposed past American sins; issuing meaningless deadlines to Iran; and snubbing allies like Britain, Israel, Poland and the Czech Republic won't win over enemies or ease world tensions.

Al-Qaida claims the Christmas Day attempt to blow up another American airliner -- and promises more havoc to come. North Korea still demands bribe money to put aside its nukes. Russia is bragging about a new generation of weapons. Hugo Chavez keeps talking about becoming a regional bully with his new oil-supplied arsenal.

Implicit in all this braggadocio is a growing suspicion abroad, rightly or wrongly, that a more naive, more unsteady America is broke, tired and unwilling to confront challenges as in the past.

Right now the world's bad actors confidently see "hope" for a vast "change" in the old world order -- but not the kind Obama once so boldly promised.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

***HOW TO END THE RECESSION*** (without Government spending) PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: You NOW have the opportunity to end the Recession by encouraging the Banks to make Prudent CRE Loans. The Banks are now unfettered to make Safe Loans. In Large American Cities there are thousands of Major Projects with Entitlements. CRE PRODUCES THE GREATEST NUMBER OF JOBS than any other segment of the Economy. Glass mfg, Steel Industry, truckers, architects, brokers, agents construction workers, electricians , plumbers, office furniture manufacturers....WE3 COULD HAVE 6% UNEMPLOYMENT WITHIN 4 MONTHS.....THERE ARE 140 SHOVEL READY, ENTITLED, PROJECTS OF 70 OR MORE UNITS READY TO GO IN LOS ANGELES alone!! People will be WORKING FOR 2 YEARS BEFORE THE BUILDINGS ARE COMPLETED; and by then, the Recession will be over and Tenants will Flood the Market to Purchase Modern "green" units. This same scenario is found in Boston, Philadelphia, Houston, Ft. Worth, Detroit, Cleveland, St. Louis, Kansas City, Tampa, Providence, Hartford, St Paul---all across America.

Posted by: MSFT-PELOSI | February 4, 2010 12:20 PM | Report abuse

Obviously there has not been any real change since Obama took office. He was not ready to be president and seems to lack self-confidence in his judgment, which is why he is overly deferential to misguided advisors, including Emanuel, Clinton, Summers, Duncan, Gates.

Obama and most Democrats in Congress support more than doubling military spending since Bush II took office. While wanting to spend over $700 billion in 2010 on the military, wars in the middle east, they lamely complain this country cannot afford to spend over $90 billion more on health care. Pax Americana is more important to Obama, Republicans, most Democrats than meeting the most important needs of human beings in this country, in the areas of health care, jobs and public safety.

Posted by: Aprogressiveindependent | February 4, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse

normal people watching the president's tete-a-tete with the Republicans only wondered why Obama always responds to imaginary arguments no one made, rather than the questions actually being asked.

That is Obama's signature move: Invent "people" who are "saying" ridiculous things and then encourage the audience to laugh at these made-up buffoons.

Since Obama's reformulations of Republican arguments are always absurd, no further response from him is necessary -- and none is ever forthcoming.

Thus, for example, Obama's description of Republican criticism of his plan to nationalize health care was that "this thing was some Bolshevik plot."

No. No one said it was a "plot," Bolshevik or otherwise.

Republicans' objection to national health care could be more accurately portrayed as follows: Obama's plan to nationalize health care was a terrible idea because it would turn over one-sixth of the American economy to Washington bureaucrats, who would run the system as competently as the federal government runs everything else, from airport security to the post office to FEMA.

How about responding to that argument? (And as long as Obama brought it up, can he explain which part of national health care the Bolsheviks would have objected to most strongly?)

This isn't how adults conduct serious political debates; it's how children argue with their parents. Don't have a cow! Liberals hide conservative arguments from the public like teenagers hide contraband from mother under the bed.

Repeatedly positing imaginary attacks by Republicans accusing him of a "plot," Obama said that "the way these issues are being presented by the Republicans is that this is some wild-eyed plot to impose huge government in every aspect of our lives."

Again, not a "plot" and certainly not "wild-eyed." The only person accusing anyone of "plotting" here is Obama accusing the GOP of plotting against him. I guess they don't teach irony at Harvard Law School.

If Obama is going to keep imagining others accusing him of "plots," could he provide just one example?

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

It would seem that the liberal "strategy" is to continue to read teleprompters, to blame bush and repubs, to spend like crazy, to lose elections, to lie, cheat and steal behind closed doors, to surrender to enemies and abandon allies, to prosecute the CIA and make deals with terrorists, to pretend that dead legislation is still viable, to lead with a majority as if you were a minority.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 12:13 PM | Report abuse

yup, now that you're here.

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 12:09 PM | Report abuse

The spiral into nasty irrelevance begins early today.

Posted by: drivl | February 4, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

Is it because of him that Kennedy was assasinated too? Seriously, what won't you guys blame on him?

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 12:00 PM | Report abuse

Obama told senate democrats this morning that he realized it was a tough time to be in Congress. What he would never admit is that it's because of him that it is such a tough time.

It's because of Obama, Reid and Pelosi that they're in danger of losing their seats next November. Democrats in the House know the same.

==

yeah and Boehner and Mitch "three chins" McConnell are such honest principled men

Posted by: Noacoler | February 4, 2010 11:57 AM | Report abuse

Obama told senate democrats this morning that he realized it was a tough time to be in Congress. What he would never admit is that it's because of him that it is such a tough time.

It's because of Obama, Reid and Pelosi that they're in danger of losing their seats next November. Democrats in the House know the same.

Posted by: thehamptons1 | February 4, 2010 11:50 AM | Report abuse

BB,

Good catch on the compounded interest. I do stand corrected. However, I noticed he used 1975 data the period in which we had enormously high inflation during Carter’s years in office those years alone will screw the data. If you take the years since Reagan took office (including 1981 his first year office in which inflation was over 10%) the average inflation is 3.37% and that average compound over 34 years is approximately 300%.

Good technical point on the tax bracket since it does adjust; however, I have seen it tied to the CPI (I may be wrong as you have pointed out in my early post). I think alternative minimum tax is a good example of something not indexed with inflation. However, with that said good catch on my early post.

Posted by: sliowa1 | February 4, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

It was more than enough coverage for me. As 37th has pointed out, Obama came off as arrogant and didn't even answer the questions.

==

yeah how uppity of him. Some of these nigras just don't know their place. Time to get out the white sheets and the rope and have us a good ol' lynchin', right, Jake?

Posted by: Noacoler | February 4, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

...and I thought I had too much time on my hands.
It's a witty idea (not impressed with the execution), but again, why is it just with this president that people suddenly are obsessed with the teleprompter?

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

Now that it's an election year, congressional democrats are scared to lead. Why? Because their leading the nation in a direction that people don't want. As American's, we don't want socialized medicine, an ever bloating deficit and higher taxes. When Republicans were in charge, we didn't get a balanced budget either. Obama promised change, but a change in rhetoric and a press conference with Republicans isn't change in substance at all. Democrats will not have a leg to stand on in these elections and that's why their really afraid to lead.

Every time that a sitting President expends political capital on a particular issue, the oppossing party uses it as a campaign tool and bashes the Pres and his party. The downfall of President Bush was when he tried to reform Social Security in 2005. Democrats ran back to old people and said "Bush is trying to take away your SS checks. Vote for us and we will protect your much needed money that you always worked so hard for." Now Obama is trying to reform healthcare and Republicans ran out to old people saying "Barack Obama wants to ration your care and kill you off! Vote with us to stop Obama the old folgie killer." Come on, Barack Obama is no Thomas Malthus (Don't know who he is, look him and his theories up.). That being said, I don't agree with the way Obama wants to reform healthcare, as I think it will increase taxes, decrease care and decrease personal responsibility that makes this nation great. Those are the reasons I opposse the healthcare deal. But political parties are using our seniors as oppossition to any change they don't want. This has to stop at some point, lies that irrate seniors to revolt. We must get past this for a better nation. Not the current healthcare plan, but we do need to revise it a bit.

Posted by: reason5 | February 4, 2010 11:30 AM | Report abuse

http://baracksteleprompter.blogspot.com/

(I read the entire transcript of the House GOP retreat appearance)

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 4, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

TO: JakeD2 @ 9:01 a.m.

"That young FBI agent" should receive the Congressional Medal of Honor.

In the six years this journalist has been extrajudicially targeted and subject to heinous electromagnetic assault and various constitutional rights abuses at the hands of my government, only "that young FBI agent" gave me faith to believe in the American system of justice.

Yes, the abuses of Bush-legacy "multi-agency coordinated action" programs of personal destruction do continue -- to this day. But, as someone once said, I now can see the promised land... and I credit "that young FBI agent" with giving me the reason to believe.

NOW IT'S OBAMA'S (AND NAPOLITANO'S) GESTAPO USA. WHEN WILL TEAM OBAMA ACT?

• Bucks County, PA MAGLOCLEN/RissNet Mid-Atlantic "fusion center" -- "Ground Zero for Homeland Domestic Torture, Community Watch Domestic Terrorism and Gov't-Enabled Financial Sabotage

http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america
OR NowPublic.com/scrivener (see "stories" list) OR poynter.org/subject.asp?id=2

Posted by: scrivener50 | February 4, 2010 11:21 AM | Report abuse

You haven't read the funny TOTUS blog?!

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 4, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

HAH! I'm sure it was, Jake.

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 11:16 AM | Report abuse

Greg, are you of the impression that the teleprompter has a mind of its own, and tells the President what to say? Do you think he is the first president to use a prompter? I dont get this obsession with the prompter in regards to President Obama. Who was the last president to give a speech of any importance without pepared notes of some type? have we ever had one?

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

elijah24:

It was more than enough coverage for me. As 37th has pointed out, Obama came off as arrogant and didn't even answer the questions.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 4, 2010 11:11 AM | Report abuse

Given that socialism would imply state ownership and an auction block would imply a private purchase (of what?), it would seem difficult to do both.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 4, 2010 11:10 AM | Report abuse

The simple fact is that even if berry gives 400 or more TelePrompTer lectures this year, the result will be mostly the same as last year, despite the overwhelming majority in both houses.

The reason is simple. Berry is a failure and no one is buying. Even libs are desserting him in droves.

His pack of lies is catching up with him and those videos are mocking him daily. The sheer volume of the deception is inescapable.

Posted by: Moonbat | February 4, 2010 11:07 AM | Report abuse

In his State-Of-The-Union teleprompter recital, Obama vowed "to fight on for his stated agenda". TRANSLATION: "The voters in Virginia, New Jersey and Massachusetts were simply to ignorant to appreciate the merits of his Socialist agenda that has put our Nation on the auction bloc."
As a canard to deflect criticism of his economically crippling energy policies, Obama declared his support for oil & gas exploration; clean coal technology; and, an expansion of nuclear power while ignoring the fact the his Interior Department is vigorously obstructing the development of America's mineral resources; and, his EPA thru governmental edict, at his express direction to counter the failure of Congress to pass his commercially destructive Cap & Tax legislation, is in the pursuit of crippling our coal industry. A long time declared Obama vendetta to "bankrupt" America's coal producers in spite of the fact that 50% of our electrical energy generation is dependent on the coal industry. And,concurrently, his Energy Department Secretary is deliberately slow-rolling funds already budgeted for nuclear plant loan guarantees.
In my own county, the EPA has declared our county to be a region of "excess OZONE pollution". TRANSLATION: "We're coming after your coal fired electrical energy generation plant". Hold on to your wallets for a major increase in your power bills. In "ObamaSpeak", it's called "a middle-class tax cut".
Can there be any doubt that we do in fact have a delusional narcissist in the White House!
The greatest impediment to a Democrat Party mid-term course correction to avoid a certain 2010 electoral tidal wave is that their anointed "Standard Bearer" , Barack "ACORN" Obama , is narcissistic to the point of being delusional. An exceedingly dangerous characteristic to have in a President. In Obama's Marxist mindset, it's simply not plausible that his Socialist agenda is anathema to the American public; and, destructive to our economy. Perhaps not surprising when one scrutinizes Obama's past radical associations; and, complete lack of any familiarity with America's private sector. The latter being the reason that he constantly derides the concept of "profit", which of course is the catalyst for free-enterprise job-creation. When listening to Obama reading a prepared text from his ubiquitous teleprompters, it's essential to IGNORE what Obama's teleprompter says, and to give very close scrutiny to what he actually does. Greg Neubeck

Posted by: gneubeck | February 4, 2010 10:59 AM | Report abuse

Surprising to me, but elme1 had it about right. Accumulated inflation is about 380% from Jan. 1, 1975 to Jan. 1, 2010. Or 2009 for that matter as prices were stable last year. That's an average inflation rate of 4.4%, though, not 11%. You've gotta remember that interest compounds, so it's (1+R)^n, not 1+n*R.

My understanding is that rates aren't indexed to inflation, but brackets are indexed.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 4, 2010 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Right Jake. Then about the time it became apparent that it wasn't an act, that the President really was the only grown-up in the room, they cut away to their biased pundits talking about how combative he seemed. Meanwhile, CNN and MSNBC (real news networks) showed the news, instead of just people trying to spin it. If Fox were a real news network, i would think they could show the news, and save the spin for afterwords.

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

Libs seem to think that even with an overwhelming majority in both houses, and the repubs completely left out of negotiations, that the voters are stupid enough to think the repubs can be blamed.

Posted by: Moonbat | February 4, 2010 10:48 AM | Report abuse

elme13,

You have major problems with your argument. While the top tax rate was cut, it was not made up technically from increased SS tax since that is suppose to fund a separate system. The SS trust fund itself is not a sustainable system and back then the tax increase was used to prevent the system from going bankrupt sooner. However, the federal government does use the increased revenue in the SS trust fund to fund the federal budget expect for Al Gore who had devised the “lock box” to keep the money safe. I would also note that businesses pay equally on any increase in SS tax with self employed people being doubly hit so its not a tax that is only a burden to the average Joe worker.

” One 1975 dollar is worth about four 2009 dollars. 4 x $34,000 = $136,000.
Do you make less than $136,000? How much are you paying in taxes this year?”

Since when has the tax code been indexed to inflation? I have not seen D running to index taxes to inflation. Also let me see if I get this, one 1975 dollar is now worth four 2009 dollars which suggests that inflation is running at 400% over 34 years which comes out to approximately 11.8% annual increase. The only time our inflation was above 10% was during that interval Carter was in the White House and the D controlled congress. Do we really want to go back to double digit inflation? I guess Reagan was not that bad after all.

Posted by: sliowa1 | February 4, 2010 10:38 AM | Report abuse

Fox News covered it for over an hour.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 4, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

I'm actually with him on that, Jake. I just wish certain (obviously biased) networks wouldn't cut away their coverage of it, when one side is starting to look bad.

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 10:28 AM | Report abuse

Why Hippie? Does Mitch McConnell not have enough plans in which to refuse to participate?

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 10:24 AM | Report abuse

McCain campaigned on submitting to MONTHLY Question Time.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 4, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Obama need to lay out a strategy to the entire Senate, not just Democrats.

Posted by: OldHippie | February 4, 2010 10:20 AM | Report abuse

There was an interesting discussion on C-SPAN today calling for question time in the U.S. Their website is www.demandquestiontime.com. I'd co-sign on that.

For anyone who cares to hear what it's like, C-SPAN broadcasts Prime Minister's Question Time Sunday evenings. William Hague is a hoot.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | February 4, 2010 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Government has and will continue to take over an ever greater portion of health care spending whether or not the health industry's money explosion bill of 2009 passes (and it won't).

A single payer system is inevitable and the payer is the taxpayer. Already the looting and profiteering embedded within the entitlement system is what is posing as private sector health care.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/02/04/AR2010020400006.html?hpid=moreheadlines

Posted by: shrink2 | February 4, 2010 10:17 AM | Report abuse

Obama - "I know these are tough times to hold office," he said. "I'm there in the arena with you."

Close, but he erroneously added the "with you" part. It sure seems like he's fighting these battles on his own. Dems really need to start fighting back. They need to start hammering the Republicans for their obstructionism. This isn't a shared responsibility. Republicans are alone in preventing progress and Dems need to make this clear. If they go down, it absolutely needs to be going down swinging.

Posted by: DDAWD | February 4, 2010 10:11 AM | Report abuse

Andy, it's a major coup because Dan Coats is a name in Indiana. With Mike Pence giving the old "thanks but no thanks" it looked like Bayh would again be essentially unchallenged. Coats is at least a familure name and can attract funding and support from some moderates.

Galt, just because you don't like the song, doesnt mean the performer is tone-deaf.

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 10:09 AM | Report abuse

But Larry, don't you think that after all of the political capital that has been expended on Health-care, to not get a bill passed would spell catastrophe for Democrats? How can they go back to the voters who put them in office, in large part because of their support of then-Senator Obama's/Clinton's plans to bring health-care to the masses, only to then say, "well we tried for a year, forsaking all else, and wasted our year-long power-play on this and didnt get it done"?

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 9:45 AM | Report abuse

What Republicans can count on to re-gain the Senate is that Obama will keep making tone-deaf speeches,

will keep making outlandish straight-faced misconceptions of the truth, and will keep denying statements and policy advocacy that he repeated time and time again but that have gone terrible wrong.

In his latest speeches - in the State of the Union and the Budget Proposal and what ever speech d’jour - Obama has overwhelmed the system with doubtful claims, flimsy premises, and assertions that are doubtful, to say the least, or outright lies, to be frank. All while emphasizing his determination to have more of the same coming.

So to know what is in store for this unusual, and straight-faced, speech-maker, just ask the American people one simple and fair question:

What Recent American President Has The Most Capacity and Ability to Distort the Facts?
Reagan; Clinton; W. Bush; Obama.
Vote at: http://www.robbingamerica.blogspot.com

And the loser is?

Posted by: JohnGalt9 | February 4, 2010 9:33 AM | Report abuse

CC, how is it that Coats entering the race was a "major coup" when he is facing a sitting senator with 13 million in the bank, but Chris Coons isn't even though he is facing a non-incumbent with 1.3 million in the bank?

Feingold will be just fine no matter who the RSCC gets to run against him. He is a true independent voice in the senate and the people of Wisconsin know that.

Posted by: AndyR3 | February 4, 2010 9:13 AM | Report abuse

Here's the problem: instead of getting with the dems and figuring out how to correct the situation, they have to strategize to get re-elected. Guess what, create jobs, fix the economy, stop giving money to banks/wall street/AIG without rules and allowing them to give enormous bonuses with taxpayers money. Come up with better ideas. Health care is not number 1 priority. If you can improve the economy, you'll get elected. What don't you understand? This goes for both parties. Give the money back to the taxpayers through lowering their mortgage rate by 2-5% for 3 years. This in turn will put more money into the taxpayers pocket, which they will turn around and spend, which will create jobs. The problem is now, people are afraid to spend their money for fear of layoffs, higher taxes and who knows what else. Banks aren't lending the money. Majority of the taxpayers played by the rules and have been hurt by the ones that over extended themselves. Hunt down the people that lied about getting mortgages(mtg lender, Realtor, home buyer) using false information. We know who they were. Fine them and put them in jail.

Posted by: larry40 | February 4, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

Did I miss something? What FBI agent?

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 9:05 AM | Report abuse

That young FBI agent should be suspended immediately.

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 4, 2010 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Until Obama acts to restore justice and the rule of law, all of his good intentions will come to naught. A job without justice is slavery by another name.

U.S. SILENTLY TORTURES AMERICANS WITH CELL TOWER MICROWAVE 'DIRECTED ENERGY' WEAPON SYSTEM, LOCAL COMMUNITY WATCH VIGILANTE TERRORISM, FINANCIAL SABOTAGE: VETERAN JOURNALIST

• Regional Homeland Security- administered fusion centers use a nationwide microwave/laser pulsed electromagnetic radiation "directed energy" weapon system to silently torture, impair, subjugate unconstitutionally "targeted" Americans and their families -- an American genocide hiding in plain sight.

• Victims' own cell phones may be used to target them.

• How a young FBI agent's 'I believe you' gave victim the faith to go public.

http://nowpublic.com/world/u-s-silently-tortures-americans-cell-tower-microwaves

NOW IT'S OBAMA'S (AND NAPOLITANO'S) GESTAPO USA. WHEN WILL TEAM OBAMA ACT?

• Bucks County, PA MAGLOCLEN/RissNet Mid-Atlantic "fusion center" -- "Ground Zero for Homeland Domestic Torture, Community Watch Domestic Terrorism and Gov't-Enabled Financial Sabotage

http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america
OR NowPublic.com/scrivener (see "stories" list) OR poynter.org/subject.asp?id=2

Posted by: scrivener50 | February 4, 2010 8:52 AM | Report abuse

dem4life1:

You are aware that R E C O N C I L I A T I O N can only be used ONCE per year, right? Sen. Byrd (Mr. Parlimentarian) has already ruled it was inapplicable to Hillarycare. I wish I could wish you "good luck".

Posted by: JakeD2 | February 4, 2010 8:43 AM | Report abuse

#2: For the record: Nobody in Indiana calls themselves "Indianans". Ever. They go by the term "Hoosier" (hence the name of the Indiana University sports teams). I realize that to the rest of the country, that term is usually reserved for hicks, trailor trash, and people who generally have no class at all, but in the "Hoosier State", it's not considered an insult. That said, having lived there for 30 years, I'm glad that I no-longer do, for reasons that can best be explained by the outside of Indiana definition of the word "Hoosier".

Posted by: elijah24 | February 4, 2010 8:15 AM | Report abuse

Obama's pep talk is just another indication that the Dem's don't "get the message" that they had better start listening to their constituents. This business as usual and dam the torpedoes,full speed ahead even though the people have said NO guarantees a lot of new faces in Congress next year. Can't happen soon enough.

Posted by: sandynh | February 4, 2010 8:00 AM | Report abuse

The question is whether Obama can contonue this momentum for more than a few weeks and if Democrats benefit from it at all. Obama is shaming Republicans and bolstering his own support, but Dems still seem clueless on how ton win in the fall.

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | February 4, 2010 7:58 AM | Report abuse

Thank you elme13.

I am still trying to figure out what it means to be an outside, versus inside, political group. Presumably outside means not directly affiliated with (funded by or funding)any particular elected or party. So is the Tea Party outside, the CfG, Acorn? It seems like all the inside groups are outside.

If the only inside groups are the Party committees and the campaigns themselves, especially in light of what the SCOTUS has done, then to be "outside" does not mean much.

Posted by: shrink2 | February 4, 2010 7:57 AM | Report abuse

R E C O N C I L I A T I O N

The dems are going to take a bath in November regardless. They should spend the next 11 months passing everything with a 51 vote majority. It wont be pretty but it will produce real results. The republicans can try to undo it if and when they regain the white house and congress.

Posted by: dem4life1 | February 4, 2010 7:51 AM | Report abuse

R E C O N C I L I A T I ON

The dems are going to take a bath in November regardless. They should spend the next 11 months passing everything with a 51 vote majority. It wont be pretty but it will produce real results. The republicans can try to undo it if and when they regain the white house and congress.

Posted by: dem4life1 | February 4, 2010 7:51 AM | Report abuse

Moodys has warned berry's policies are about to lower our AAA rating. Typical lib.

Posted by: Moonbat | February 4, 2010 7:41 AM | Report abuse

"President Obama spoke to -- and took questions from -- his former Democratic Senate colleagues on Thursday,..."

Wednesday, no? Hope you can correct this early, CC.

Margaret, vets are very rich and have $2M lying around for targeted ads. Why would you cynically yell astroturf? :-)

#1 is an indication that the Prez will be involved in midterms, perpetuating the problem that nothing gets done in an election year except window dressing and positioning. We have elections every other year, so that, along with the Senate's cloture rule, the cycle itself is a structural impediment.


Posted by: mark_in_austin | February 4, 2010 7:32 AM | Report abuse

Liberal plan to reduce Your taxes. Lose your job.

Posted by: Moonbat | February 4, 2010 7:28 AM | Report abuse

Present ident obimbo has ordered all Cspan cameras out of congress. They are to be installed over at the CIA.

Posted by: Moonbat | February 4, 2010 7:19 AM | Report abuse

Beginning with 1980's "Reaganomics" working people have been steadily & stealthily robbed by the biggest tax cut & tax shift in the history of the world:

> 40+% income tax cut for the wealthy; (top tax rate cut from the 70%'s to the low 30%'s) - while raising social security taxes a whole lot (for working people) & cutting future benefits in half - resulting in a huge tax shift from the wealthy -to- everybody else: (THE REASON the rich have been getting richer and everybody else has been getting poorer -ever since).

>A second way Republican Economic Policy (Reaganomics) has been used for the past 30 years to shift taxes from the wealthy to everybody else is by use of the "standard deduction and personal exemption". (which is; the amount of money Congress decides it probably should have cost you that year to live indoors, eat, get to work, and take care of any dependents). You get to subtract that amount from your income, then pay taxes on the remaining amount.

By the early 1980's the standard deduction & personal exemption had become so out of step with reality, so ridiculously low, that Time magazine published this fact:

-If the standard deduction and personal exemption of today (early 80's) was the same in constant dollars as it was in the 1970's, a family of 4 would pay no income taxes until their income exceeded $34,000. By that 1970's standard, when would your income be high enough -today- to begin paying taxes?

One 1975 dollar is worth about four 2009 dollars. 4 x $34,000 = $136,000.
Do you make less than $136,000? How much are you paying in taxes this year?

Starting to get an idea of the Massive Proportions of this 30-year-grand theft?
Its negative effects on you, your children, grandchildren, your country and your world?

What are you going to do about it? I don't know about you but I am going to do the same thing I have been doing for the past few decades: Work to Throw Republicans out of office.

Posted by: elme13 | February 4, 2010 7:11 AM | Report abuse

Votevets sounds like astroturf to me.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | February 4, 2010 6:34 AM | Report abuse

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