October 22, 2013


Methinks the Establishment Republicans (boo! hiss!) might be walking back the absolutism of their attacks on Senator Ted Cruz (HOSS TX). I offer, as Exhibit A, the following headline:

Fred Barnes: The Upside of the GOP Shutdown Defeat

I love the WSJ Ed Page and I like Fred Barnes, but one must admit that the combination is about as establishment as it gets. Yet the "defeat" suddenly enjoys an "upside."
Now across-the-board cuts go into effect annually without the need for a fresh vote in Congress or the president's signature. Nor are Republicans forced to offer Democrats the sweetener of tax increases. The sequester is cuts and only cuts. As a result, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell noted proudly last week when announcing the end of the shutdown that "government spending has declined for two years in a row [for] the first time in 50 years."

Mr. McConnell negotiated both the 2011 agreement, known as the Budget Control Act, or BCA, and the shutdown deal. He's not about to let go of either, unless Mr. Obama and his Democratic allies offer a serious slate of money-saving entitlement reforms. A special Senate-House conference has been given until Dec. 13 to reach still another budget agreement that theoretically could restrain entitlements and soften the sequester. But Mr. McConnell doesn't expect this to happen. Neither does Mr. Reid.

All we need are a few more defeats, n'est ce pas?

Tea Party Posted by John Kranz at October 22, 2013 12:36 PM

Oui, c'est bon!

But what about this:

"For Republicans eager to corral federal spending - and that's most of them..."

Some would argue that "most" Republicans deserted the 'wacko birds' who actually attempted to corral federal spending. But I'll not do that - I'd just like to ask if it is acceptable to have, as a goal, a congress wherein ALL Republicans are eager to corral federal spending? Or is that too "extreme?"

Posted by: johngalt at October 22, 2013 3:28 PM

Barnes (and Strassel and Kudlow) would say that all Republicans wish to cut spending but differ on tactics. Do you risk an unpopular ploy close to important midterms?

I find that argument compelling, but would like to see all three of them discover what Barnes begins to limn. All accept rather generic poll data on "likeability of GOP Congress" as proof of defeat.

Posted by: jk at October 22, 2013 3:54 PM

Who says the wacko bird tactics are unpopular, generic polling data? I don't for a second believe that McCain or Graham would ever cut any pentagon spending. Ever. And the Dems know they'll sell their souls for DoD, so they never get to cut any other spending in any other department. Ever.

I, for one, am fed up with business-as-usual in Washington D.C. I'm beyond ready to attempt other tactics, even ones that some may malign as "unpopular."

Posted by: johngalt at October 22, 2013 7:20 PM | What do you think? [3]