QOTD: President Obama
According to Bob Woodward:
“I’m a blue dog. I want fiscal restraint and order.”
Woodward says he also tells people " “I don’t want to cut entitlements in any way that would hurt vulnerable populations.” So that's good. He'll only cut "entitlements" a bit. I feel so much better.
Read the whole interview (published in Pete Peterson's Financial Times, by the way) if you want to see some Village conventional wisdom. I particularly like this:
TFT : Americans are still “left with a struggling economy,” you conclude, because things could not be worked out. We’re approaching the fiscal cliff –
BW: Not just the fiscal cliff. We are approaching a time when the congressional authorization to borrow more money will be exhausted. We’re going to be back in the soup with the same problem of not having enough money to pay the bills.
Both the question and the answer are 100% prime cut bullshit. But you knew that, right?
And for those who still wonder if the President is serious about a Grand Bargain, this might clear that up for you:
TFT: So it’s your belief that Obama was sincerely looking for that commission to produce ideas and solutions that could be implemented?
BW: Yes, I think so. He told me he’d “willingly lose an election” if he could solve these fiscal and spending and tax issues in the right way.
If Boehner hadn't balked and the cuts to Social Security and medicare had passed in the summer of 2011, we might be seeing that willingness tested. He's just lucky the Tea Party saved him.
The only good news in the article is that Woodward doesn't think the Democrats will go along with "entitlement" cuts. Unfortunately, so far, we only have 28 Democratic Senators willing to stand up and say no. That's not enough. It will all hinge on Reid and I'm not sure he'll defy his newly elected president. The Republicans will still control the House in the lame duck session (and probably beyond.) Let's hope the Tea Party doesn't wise up in the meantime.
h/t to ms