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Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Boehner Pitches Plan B- Proves Senate Dems And Obama Won't Take Yes For An Answer

By Susan Duclos

Political theater is rarely truly entertaining and Speaker of the House John Boehner and Barack Obama's political posturing and side show antics are also not entertaining, but Speaker Boehner's latest volley in the fiscal talk negotiating process, proves without a shadow of a doubt, to the American public, that Senate Democrats and Barack Obama don't know how to take yes for an answer.

Boehner's latest: Propose a House bill that would raise taxes on income above $1 million and keep the Bush-era tax rates on income under $1 million.

Pitch it to House Republicans and to make sure his pitch is reported on by all major media:

Boehner made a simple argument to House Republicans that tax rates will go up on everyone come Jan. 1. “The question for us is real simple: How do we stop as many of those rate hikes as possible?” Boehner told House Republicans. Quite simply, the vote is one way House Republicans will avoid blame if the nation goes over the cliff.

“For weeks, Senate Republicans — and a growing number of you — have been pushing for us to pivot to a ‘Plan B,’” Boehner said. “I think there’s a better way. But the White House just can’t seem to bring itself to agree to a ‘balanced’ approach, and time is running short. Taxes are going up on everyone on Jan. 1. They’re baked into current law. And we have to stop whatever tax rate increases we can. In the absence of an alternative, as of this morning, a ‘modified Plan B’ is the plan.”

Okay, the stage is set. The audience is engaged. No taxes on Americans earning under $1 million, increased taxes on those earning $1 million and more.

Message to the American Public: We said yes to what Obama and Democrats said they wanted and now the ball is in Obama and Senate Democrats' court.

Enter Democrats to the stage and Senate Majority leader Harry Reid:

But Democrats reacted angrily to Boehner’s move, blasting the speaker for failing to reach an accord with Obama and asserting that Ohio Republican knows his bill can’t get through the Senate or get Obama’s signature.

“Speaker Boehner’s ‘plan B’ is the farthest thing from a balanced approach,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) in a statement. “It will not protect middle class families because it cannot pass both Houses of Congress.

Well, if Boehner's evil plot works, it can get passed the Republican controlled House because they have the majority, so what Reid is saying is that he and Senate Democrats won't pass it through the Democratically controlled US Senate.

[Update] Even if Boehner and Republicans cannot pass it, if he garners enough Republican votes in the House and no Democratic votes, then the message given is that Democrats killed it. [End update]

Message to the American Public: Obama and Senate Democrats won't take yes for an answer and would rather see all taxes hiked for everyone.

It is all political theater and while most conservatives are making it very clear to their elected Representatives that raising taxes on anyone and killing jobs in the process is unacceptable, we all know how Washington works, the games they play, the public discussions versus the private discussions which happen to get "leaked",  meant to garner support for one side or the other, and that any final deal agreed upon is going to include options that party supporters from both sides are going to pitch a fit over.

Our elected officials still work for us, we should still make our voices heard, we should still send daily polite messages to Speaker Boehner reminding him that Republicans won the House majority again in the 2012 elections and conservatives did that expecting them to represent fiscal responsibility.

We should also understand that until a deal is reached and agreed upon, it is all political theater.