Obama stands firm as Republicans back down

“Now is the time to lance the boil of Republican extremism once and for all. Since Obama became president, the extremists who have taken over the Republican Party have escalated their demands every time he’s caved (when he extended the Bush tax cuts through the end of 2012, offered spending cuts and then a Super Committee and sequester to get the debt ceiling lifted in 2011, permanently extended the Bush tax cuts for incomes up to $400,000 to avoid the fiscal cliff of 2012, offered a “chained CPI” and Medicare cuts in 2013). This time, though, Obama didn’t cave — at least, not yet. And now, with the government shuttered and the nation on the verge of defaulting on its debts, public opinion has turned sharply against the Republican Party. And the GOP’s corporate and Wall Street backers are threatening to defund it.

Suddenly the Republicans are acting like the school-yard bully who terrorized the playground but finally got punched in the face. They’re in shock. They’re humiliated. They’re trying to come up with ways of saving face. With bloodied noses, House Republicans are running home, abruptly turning negotiations over to their Senate colleagues. Their demand to repeal or delay the Affordable Care Act has vanished. Now, it seems, negotiations over the federal budget deficit are about to begin once again. But keeping the government running and paying the nation’s bills should never have been bargaining chits in the first place, and the President and Democrats shouldn’t begin to negotiate until they’re taken off the table. The question is how thoroughly President Obama has learned that extortionist demands escalate if you give in to them.”

Quote from Facebook page of American economist Robert Reich.


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