Thursday, October 10, 2013

Who, me?

It seems no one wants to take the blame for the current government shutdown, no longer even the Tea Party, which manufactured this current crisis with a little help from their friends.

As this graph shows, Pres. Obama has already come down quite a bit from his original proposed 2014 budget of $1.2 bil to $986 bil, which is only $19 bil different than Paul Ryan's 2014 budget.  As I see it, Obama and the Democrats have met the Republicans much more than half way, but here is the GOP quibbling over 2 per cent when they got the President to shave off 18 per cent off his original budget.

Since sequestration, we have seen spending cuts across the board.  A sequestration the Republican party refuses to own up to, much like their current shutdown.  In their minds, it is Obama's "intractability" that is the cause of these actions.  It really defies all credulity, especially when you look at the numbers.  Yet, the blame game persists.

The polls seem to have swung in favor of the Democrats with even the Wall St. Journal reporting that this shutdown is costing the Republicans dearly.  Yet, Ted Cruz believes his filibuster galvanized Republicans, even as 20 or so House Republicans contemplate jumping ship and voting for the Senate clean resolution, if only Speaker Boehner would bring the CR to a vote.  Of course, this would undermine his tenuous position as he tries to hold the party together in the face of a Tea Party coup, which more and more would like to see him out.

The amazing part is that the Tea Party Caucus numbers less than 50 persons in the House and only 5 in the Senate, making it roughly 20 per cent of Republican Congresspersons.  Yet, here it is calling the shots with Ted Cruz the de facto Senate Leader and Bachmann the de facto House Speaker, as she is head of the House TP caucus.

Biden already called GOP Senate leaders out for allowing themselves to be run by junior senators, but it didn't seem to make any impact.  As much as ranking Senate leaders have chastised Cruz and Rand, the junior senators are still allowed to get away with their antics, and usually lauded for it in the end.  It seems what the GOP fears most is a revolt from within, and this is exactly what is happening to their political party.

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