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Hullabaloo


Monday, July 11, 2011

 
Eat Our Peas

by digby

Dday has the rundown on the press conference this morning, which I missed. It sounds to me as if everything's where it was last week --- he wants a Grand Bargain and the Republicans are refusing to give an inch while he's pretty much willing to give away the store. (I haven't seen him draw a line in the sand, but perhaps I missed it.)
On cutting entitlements, he made his pitch thusly. “Medicare in particular will run out of money and we will not be able to sustain that program… If you’re a progressive who cares about the integrity of Medicare and Social Security and Medicaid, then we have an obligation to make sure we make those changes required to make it sustainable on those terms… We won’t make progress on the values we care about without getting our fiscal house in order. If you care about those things, then you’ve got to be interested in figuring out how we pay for all that in a responsible way.” As for Social Security, which he acknowledged is not the source of any deficit problems, he basically said that, as long as we’re doing a big deal, we might as well throw that in. “The reason to include that in this package is, if you’re going to take a bunch of tough votes, you might as well do it now,” Obama said. He did not specify the changes.

So tactical or not, he’s certainly committed to a big deal that includes trimming benefits and some revenues, in a ratio massively tilted toward cuts. “I would want more revenues, and fewer cuts to programs for middle class families,” he said. “But that’s the point. I’m willing to move in their direction to get something done. And that’s what compromise entails.”

He concluded that getting the deficit conversation out of the way would enable the country to move with a laser focus to jobs and investment. I don’t know why anyone would think that deficits could be taken off the table forever, but that’s his argument.


The accusation that those of us who are upset about cuts to Medicare, medicaid and Social security don't care about the programs is especially clever, I have to admit. That will prove to be quite useful I imagine. For Republicans.

"I think it would give the American people enormous confidence that this town can actually do something one in a while," Obama said.

I think the President's goal is exactly what he says it is: to do Big Things.I just don't think it matters much what the substance of those Big Things is.

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