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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The Damage Is Done

Just a quick follow up to my post Bye-Bye Brown.

This analysis by Nate Silver of how Republicans may reach a "tipping point" on the Ryan budget as there begins a trickle of defections, and how damaging Scott Brown's Politico op-ed was (emphasis mine):
 More recently, Senator Scott Brown, the Massachusetts Republican who faces an intrinsically tough re-election battle next year despite his strong personal popularity, made a show of coming out against the bill with a long commentary in Politico yesterday. I don’t know why Mr. Brown chose that particular forum; it is among the most important reads of the morning for thought leaders on Capitol Hill, but is less important for the voters who will actually decide his race next year. (For some reason, candidates seem compelled to draw attention to their most challenging decisions — another example is Blanche Lincoln and her health care vote.) Even so, Mr. Brown’s announcement will make some Republican chiefs of staff very nervous.
In an editorial, the Washington Examiner notes that Brown has joined a Republican circular firing squad:
Of the three men's criticisms, Brown's are the most disappointing. They sound less like genuine objections than excuses for a "no" vote that Brown believes to be politically expedient.
I cannot emphasize enough that the issue is not that Brown will vote against the Ryan budget.  As Silver and the Washington Examiner note, the problem for Republicans is the way in which it was done, in a very a public shot fired across the bow of fellow Republicans.

While I doubt that Brown's op-ed itself influenced the loss in NY-26, it fits a false narrative that we can muddle along with just a few tweaks to the current system, and that the changes proposed by Republicans put seniors more at risk.
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  1. As always, "Republicans. They thirst for death." Evidently nothing less than utter economic implosion and collapse will make the cuts possible. Indeed, they will be the cuts.

  2. I predicted last year that Brown would eventually switch parties. It is also instructive to remember that the first call he placed after winning last year was to John McCain to thank him for his help. He never thanked the Tea Party who took him out of the gutter and enabled him to win going away. Poster boy for what is wrong with the establishment GOP.

  3. The boneheaded cowardice in the face of fiscal reality on the part of Northeast Republicans is just appalling. They're not just wimping out on a difficult vote, they're putting the nation at risk of a crippling fiscal stroke because they're afraid for their precious seats.

    I'm all in favor of a "big tent," but when you put personal electoral interests ahead of the nation -- then just get out.

  4. Yes, but these two, along with The Herminator might have something to say about it.

    1) Sarah Palin

    2) Thaddeus McCotter

  5. The damage is indeed done (to all of human civilization). Our country is destined to collapse under the weight of the entitlement mentality. By the time we collapse, all of Europe will have preceded us and there will be nobody left to bail anybody out.

    I give human civilization no more than 20 years before the total fiscal collapse.

  6. SBVOR..

    1) “Never give in, never give in, never; never; never; never - in nothing, great or small, large or petty - never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense”

    2) "For my own part, looking out upon the future, I do not view the process with any misgivings. I could not stop it if I wished; no one can stop it. Like the Mississippi, it just keeps rolling along. Let it roll. Let it roll on full flood, inexorable, irresistible, benignant, to broader lands and better days."

    3) Drink a bottle of good brandy every day.

    h/t to Sir Winston

    For my part, I think we are in for one of the most amazing eighteen months of our lives.

  7. The reason Newt hasn't a chance in the world of winning the nomination is because he squandered the Contract with America. He promised smaller government and then reneged on everything he promised.

    Scott Brown has just done the same thing. What he doesn't understand -- and the lesson which apparently has still eluded Newt all these years -- is that the voters don't appreciate being lied to. They're willing to give untried candidates the benefit of the doubt on their campaign promises, but once the election's been won, they're expected to deliver. If they don't, they've no one to blame for their impending loss but themselves.

    This isn't the mid 90s, when voters believed they had to perpetually hold their nose and vote for the least odious candidate. We've finally figured out that WE hold the electoral power. We pull the levers. And we aren't nearly as isolated and despairing as we've been in the past. We've connected with each other. We're getting active on the local and state level.

    The days of the Beltway insiders running things are over, and they don't want to admit it.

    So I'm not going to despair and give up. Instead I'm going to fight even harder; I'm going to make sure we select better candidates this time. I'm going to make sure they win the nomination at the expense of the RINOs currently occupying those seats. And I'm damned sure going to work as hard as I can to see to it they defeat the dems come November. Because if we fail now, it's more kicking the can down the road until NOBODY has any coverage, but we're still paying off the bills.

  8. Just for the record, I too will continue to fight. I just don't expect to win. Nothing will change until a solid majority of Americans indicate through one poll or another (including the voting booth poll) that they will DEMAND serious cuts in spending on the big three entitlements (Medicare in particular). At the moment, the polling data say exactly the opposite. The RINOs are merely responding to the polling data.

    Don't blame the politicians, blame the American people -- yes, even the TEA Party. Most of the TEA Party objected to ObamaCare primarily due to the associated cuts in Medicare spending.

  9. Sorry, Prof, but in the Midwest we regard anyone on either Coast as either a subversive or a suspect for same.

    Brown's just another fine example of 'why.'

  10. 1. I just got a call from the Brown organization, on whose donor list I am. I told the caller that if I'm in a position to make donations in 2012, in view of the Politico piece what I had intended to give to Brown would go to Ryan.

    2. Pasadena Phil, Brown switching parties is an interesting thought, but I question whether he'd survive a Democrat primary here in MA. Unlike Joe Lieberman, Brown doesn't have the track record to win as an independent.

    3. I completely agree with Bill. It's not primarily what Brown said; it's how he said it.

  11. It has become time for some good ol' Tenth Amendment nullification stuff. States need to reassert their supremacy and sovereignty. But they won't. The states have become slaves to federal $$$$. There is no escape.