Making Them Pay (And Making A Better Bill...?)
by Todd Beeton, Thu Jan 29, 2009 at 09:29:48 AM EST
I'm under no illusions that the Obama administration was somehow caught flat-footed by the lack of Republican votes for the stimulus bill yesterday but I am a bit (pleasantly) surprised by the retaliatory tone of some statements coming out of the administration in the wake of the vote.
"It's clear the Republicans who voted against the stimulus represent constituents who will be stunned to learn their member of Congress voted against [saving or] creating 4 million jobs," the aide said.
White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said the lawmakers will have to answer to their constituents.
"I do believe that there will be people in districts all over the country that will wonder why, when there's a good bill to get the economy moving again, why we still seem to be playing political gotcha," Gibbs said.
And as an "unnamed Democratic official" put it clearly:
"We will run ads in their districts."
Of course, the vote isn't over, the bill still needs to get through the Senate. That debate is scheduled to begin next week. So, in the meantime, I give you the vast leftwing conspiracy:
Amid a worsening economic crisis that resulted in 2.6 million American jobs being lost last year, and with layoffs accelerating in the early part of 2009, Americans United for Change, MoveOn.org Political Action, AFSCME and SEIU announced a robust television advertising campaign today as part of the Campaign for Jobs and Economic Recovery.
The ads will target moderate Republican Senators Olympia Snowe and Susan Collins in Maine, Chuck Grassley in Iowa, Judd Gregg in New Hampshire and Lisa Murkowski in Alaska.
Watch the ad below:
Speaking of the Senate vote, we just may see a much better bill emerge there. John Kerry is making an awful lot of sense.
Sen. John Kerry says Democrats should ignore Republicans demands about the stimulus plan if theyre going to vote against it anyway.
Reacting to Wednesday nights vote in the House -- where not a single GOP member supported the stimulus package -- Kerry told Politico that if Republicans arent prepared to vote for it, I dont think we should be giving up things, where I think the money can be spent more effectively.
If theyre not going to vote for it, lets go with a plan that we think is going to work.
See, was that so hard!?
Update [2009-1-29 14:42:48 by Todd Beeton]:H/t to Art3 for this update from HuffPo. While the House "isn't there yet" when it comes to the prospect of stripping Republican measures from the stimulus if they're not going to vote for it anyway, it's nice to see House Dems at least acknowledge the absurdity of conceding anything if they're getting nothing in return:
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was asked Thursday by the Huffington Post why the business tax cuts, whose purpose was to garner Republican support, would be left in the bill if no Republicans supported it regardless.
"That's what my members ask me," said Pelosi. "It wasn't something that was suggested [by Democrats]. It was a heavy lift for our members, but they understood that it has a benefit and were willing to support it."
So far, she said, she has been resistant to removing the cuts from the package. "It's something that we can live with," she said. "I can't answer why they wouldn't vote for this even though their main net-operating-loss carry-back suggestion was part of the tax cuts."
Majority Whip James Clyburn (D-SC) said that Democratic leadership was still willing to work with the GOP. "I've heard that discussion," he said of the push by Democratic members to take back the business tax cuts and include provisions, such as funds for family planning, that were eliminated due to Republicans objections.
Update [2009-1-29 14:42:48 by Todd Beeton]:Updated title.