Mandate — With the GOP Taking the Blame for Failure

Filed in National by on November 14, 2012

I’m talking about the fiscal cliff discussion — which I’ve decided to call the fiscal con, from a renaming effort that NPR had for this thing. The WaPo and Pew took a poll asking people what their expectations are on the outcome and who would be at fault for the failure of any talks. By a margin of 51% to 38%, those polled do not think that the fiscal cliff discussions will be productive. And if they fail, the folks polled will point the finger at the GOP 53% to 29% (10% blaming both sides equally).  Even better — majorities seem to understand what is at stake for themselves and for the country.

This poll didn’t ask people about potential solutions, but this certainly looks like the GOP should be quite ripe to be pushed into some reasonableness here.  And it looks like the Democrats shouldn’t have to compromise much for a deal.  President Obama met with his progressive and labor supporters today to talk about this, and the consensus seems to be that the commitment to hold to letting tax cuts expire for all income over $250K is firm.  I haven’t seen anything else useful out of this meeting.  We’ll see what the meetings the rest of the week bring, but while the President keeps talking about a balanced deal, it looks to me that the people who should be most motivated for a “balanced” narrative ought to be the GOP.

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  1. jason330 says:

    I hope John Carney and Tom Carper style Democrats don’t undermine the President by trying to give the GOP too many outs.

  2. Liberal Elite says:

    Obama should let us go over the cliff. It’s a much better negotiating position.

    Also, if he raises taxes now, it will always be the “Obama tax increase”.
    If he lets the Bush tax cuts expire and replaces them with DIFFERENT tax cuts, then this will always be the “Obama tax cut”.

    The Dems who run in 2014 will thank him.

  3. bamboozer says:

    Obama and the Dems look to be in good shape, the GOP plays the worship the rich game at thier peril. If thier smart, big if, the Republicans will use this as an opportunity to rid themselves of Grover “Poopyhead” Norquist and his plague of a pledge.

  4. Dave says:

    My opinion is that the best strategy is to let the tax cuts expire and then replace them (with cuts based on a slightly higher number than 250K). I recognize that there are 2014 political considerations to the strategy, but some measure of tax reform needs to consist of both cuts and increases. He might as well own it all. However, I would suggest caution about trying to bite off more than he and the nation can chew. While the Affordable Care Act was pretty comprehensive, it was also pretty contentious. Massive sudden change often results in a tailspins, derailment, and other transportation metaphors for disaster. Incremental change aids digestion, even if it seems too slow.