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Should Republicans Take Obama Seriously Or Not?

By now, we have all heard the rumor that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell laughed out loud when President Obama’s Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner laid out his proposal for “solving” the issue of the fiscal cliff. From what I can gather about the proposal, it is certainly laughable. $50 billion in new spending, $1.6 trillion in tax hikes, and only promises of addressing spending in the future. And don’t forget, Obama also wants to tie this all to an increase of the debt ceiling, as well as taking that authority from Congress and into his own hands. Oh, they would be able to override his decision, but only with a two-thirds majority. Surely, he is jesting.

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Some observers believe a deal has already been struck. Read Sentry Journal for more on that. I’m not sure I agree, but one can not help but wonder at the ridiculous proposal put forward by the Obama administration. I realize some Republicans have signaled they are ready to break ranks and abandon their pledge to not raise taxes, if the right deal is offered, but surely the Obama administration does not believe the Republicans would not be stupid enough to agree to something this silly. It would be the equivalent of going to the negotiating table and giving our opponent everything they asked for and expecting nothing in return. I don’t care if the media does castigate the GOP for causing untold suffering and giving the middle class a lump of coal for Christmas, they should not agree to anything that remotely resembles this proposal.

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To the question at hand, should we Republicans take President Obama seriously on the fiscal cliff? I would be interested in hearing what you think about that. Should we call his bluff and force his hand? I have read varying opinions on that. They range from Obama not wanting a real compromise because he has every intention of driving America off the fiscal cliff, to how careful we need to be to make sure we negate the blame that will be assuredly thrown in our direction. Personally, considering Obama’s first proposal (I know I keep coming back to that, but it’s just so obviously overboard), we should break out our poker face and see just how far he is willing to push the mandate he thinks he gained from the election.

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Let me put it this way. I am tired of the political games Obama is playing and the campaign of rhetoric he is using to push the idea that raising $1.6 trillion in taxes is the only possible solution to solving our financial issues. I am coming to the opinion that it would not be an entirely bad idea to refuse to even negotiate with Obama until he comes up with a credible proposal to cut spending. Any deal that may be struck between now and the end of 2012 has to include spending cuts that are in the here and now, not years in the future. Unless that happens, I’m not willing to take Obama seriously when he talks about solving America’s fiscal problems.

About LD Jackson

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LD Jackson has written 2053 posts in this blog.

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Founder and author of the political and news commentary blog Political Realities. I have always loved to write, but never have I felt my writing was more important than in this present day. If I have changed one mind or impressed one American about the direction our country is headed, then I will consider my endeavors a success. I take the tag line on this blog very seriously. Above all else, in search of the truth.

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  • “… but surely the Obama administration does not believe the Republicans would not be stupid enough to agree to something this silly.”

    Maybe I am too much of a cynic, Larry, but it may be that Obama wants them to call his bluff. He may think going over the cliff and blaming it on the GOP would destroy them for years to come. He could believe that in January they could pick things up and do what has to be done and there will have been no long lasting harm to the economy. Risky? Yes. But Obama has the GOP in a tough position and he may think it is an opportunity too good to pass up.

    • You may be a cynic, but it is born of experience. You have seen a lot of human behavior in your life time. I wouldn’t be surprised if you turn out to be correct, but given the loaded circumstances we are facing, I’m not at all sure we shouldn’t call his bluff and let it play out.

  • Steve Dennis

    I don’t take his proposal seriously, but I do take him seriously because I do think he is willing to take us over the cliff. It might be that he wants to, but it might just be that he knows Republicans will take the blame and just like everything else this wouldn’t stick to him so he has nothing to lose and everything to gain.

    • I have came to that same opinion. I do not believe it will cause Obama to lose a lot of sleep if we go over the fiscal cliff. He will surely be in campaign mode, making sure America knows how evil and mean-spirited the Republicans are, but his concern will probably be mostly for public consumption.

      I am beginning to think we should stand our ground and insist on not one cent in higher taxes, at least until we see some kind of substantive spending cuts in today’s dollars, not ten years down the road. That may sound like a drastic measure, but we have to force the issue sometime, preferably sooner, rather than later.

  • Larry, put me in the camp of Obama wants us over the cliff. I’m not sure he has the political capital to pull it off though. But it fits his ideology to a tee. Across the board tax hikes, military cuts and a 2013 recession with rising unemployment. He gets to blame the GOP and then push through his proposals on the board right now. The GOP will have no leverage at all. The media helped to make sure he never owned his first 4 years, so he’ll escape this as well.

    • I wouldn’t put it past him. It does fit the description of what he would most like to see as his policy accomplishments.

  • Dragonconservative

    I don’t think Obama really cares if we go over the cliff or not. I think he’s primarily concerned with taxing the rich, who he sees as a negative influence in America. He just wants to expand the size of government in order to create social justice.

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  • Democrats are eager to go over the cliff because it gives them everything they want. Repeal of the tax breaks and the military gutted.

    I take Obama and the democrats very seriously.

  • The GOP is going to get the blame — no matter what.

    I myself take Obama and his agenda very seriously because the agenda will touch every one of us — and I’m not speaking only of the “fiscal cliff,” either.

  • Just to be clear, I do take Obama and the agenda he is trying to implement very seriously. With the title of this post, I was referring to the offer he sent to Capitol Hill, specifically.