4:37 PM, Feb 27, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Radio host Hugh Hewitt makes the case that the GOP is "suicidal." In a piece with the headline, "The Tone-Deaf, Insulated, Suicidal D.C. GOP," Hewitt writes:
Dave Camp is by all accounts a wonderful guy. But he has orchestrated another pratfall for the Beltway GOP, another display of loser-thinking, elite favor-currying, and desperately bad politics eight months before crucial elections. And he has done so when even party leaders have said his grand plan has zero chance of succeeding. No one is even sure what is in the proposal because Representative Camp is attempting to bend public opinion by talking about what is in it before we get to see what it is in it, just like Obamacare.
This has become a habit of the D.C. GOP. Again and again some sect of the D.C. GOP develops a sweeping policy proposal –in secret– unveils it to great expectations and the nods of Beltway elites, and then are shocked to find their base voters are adamantly opposed. Again and again the chief sponsors of legislation refuse to listen to anyone not already inside their circles, and every time big Beltway interests distort the desires of party regulars. Again and again, shocked D.C. elites who were expecting acclaim get hit with a tidal wave of disdain.
Every time the chief sponsors refuse to talk to the base via talk radio, key cable shows, or social media. Every time they refuse to answer tough questions and engage the base in conversations before they unveil the New Coke. And every time they pull a dead rabbit out of their hats and are shocked when talk radio and cable news audiences are appalled and angry and erupt on Twitter or other forums.
This session of Congress this sequence has already happened with immigration reform and with the repeal of the COLA for career military. Now it will happen again with Dave Camp’s “tax reform” proposal, which of course will slash deductions held dear by base GOP voters in “exchange” for cuts in the corporate rate, capital gains and dividends rates. Such cuts matter to the wealthiest of Americans and to large business interests. They matter little if at all to homeowners, donors to churches, para-church organizations and schools, residents of high tax states, and the rising upper class –those with large salaries but few assets– get hammered under Camp’s third bracket, which he attempts to deny exists by labeling it a “surcharge” and not a bracket, thus combining deceitful packaging with a new and sure-to-be-abused avenue for future tax-hikers.
Whole thing here.
Same as the old farm bill.Feb 24, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 23 • By DAVE JUDAY
The president just signed into law the Agricultural Act of 2014, a multiyear, comprehensive agricultural, rural, and nutrition policy measure. As legislation goes, it was rather unremarkable. What was remarkable was the path it followed to approval. Unlike most farm bill debates, which tend to be festivals of bipartisanship and comity, this one split lawmakers—rural from urban, House from Senate, Republican from Democrat—along every political fault including between the Tea Party caucus and the rest of the GOP.
10:01 AM, Feb 11, 2014 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
I understand House Speaker John Boehner has just announced to his conference that he intends to bring the floor of the House a clean debt limit increase. Conservative members of the conference had argued for this course. Conservatives will vote against "Obama's debt increase," but expect it to pass with mostly Democratic votes, and some Republicans. This should take the prospect of government default or shutdown off the table, and with it one of the few Democratic talking points that might help save them this year.
11:13 AM, Feb 10, 2014 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
New York Democratic senator Chuck Schumer, an author of the Senate immigration bill, may have succeeded in helping Republicans kill his own bill.
11:15 AM, Feb 7, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Jeb Bush will not be at next month's Conservative Political Action Conference. Instead, he'll be going on a "business trip."
7:56 AM, Feb 6, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
The boss joined Morning Joe this morning to share his predictions for the 2016 Republican field:
'Democrats tend to take it personally; Republicans think it’s funny.'7:24 AM, Feb 3, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
In an interview with Vulture.com, Saturday Night Live executive producer Lorne Michaels concedes that mocking Republicans is easier than going after Democrats.
"Republicans are easier for us than Democrats," says Michaels. "Democrats tend to take it personally; Republicans think it’s funny."
7:10 PM, Jan 30, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Senator Jeff Sessions says that House Republicans should "expose" President Obama's immigration plan, and not join it.
3:45 PM, Jan 30, 2014 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
National Republican Congressional Committee chair Rep. Greg Walden told reporters at the House Republican retreat that immigration votes are "probably months out" and will be after the congressional primaries are mostly over.
3:06 PM, Jan 30, 2014 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
Included in the political news of the morning (flash, bulletin: Hillary Clinton is still the front runner for the Democratic nomination) is an interesting item suggesting that Democratic party insiders, fat cats, and such have all but decided that reinstalling Nancy Pelosi as speaker of the House has become a forlorn hope and that it is time to deploy all available resources and energies into keeping the Senate.
Offers a better way forward.11:18 AM, Jan 29, 2014 • By DANIEL HALPER
Yesterday afternoon, before President Obama's State of the Union Address, Senator Jeff Sessions' staff hand-delivered to each Republican member of the House an important memo on the so-called immigration reform bill being debated on Capital Hill. The 3-page document, written by Sessions, argues that pushing the current immigration legislation forward is bad politics, bad policy, and that there's a better way for Republicans.
8:40 PM, Jan 27, 2014 • By JAMES C. CAPRETTA
As Bill Kristol and Jeff Anderson noted earlier today, the introduction by Republican Senators Burr, Coburn, and Hatch of an Obamacare replacement plan is an important milestone in the health care debate. This is a serious and practical replacement proposal, offered by three prominent legislators. It could easily serve as the starting point for a legislative effort, perhaps even next year if Republicans regain control of the Senate, to undo Obamacare and replace it with something far better.