Tax Cuts for Top 2% Extended. Democrats Wish They’d Voted for Hillary.

It’s official, and Obama has bowed to President McConnell  and extended ALL of the Bush tax cuts for two years in exchange for an extension of unemployment benefits and a payroll tax cut to encourage hiring.

For a second, put away the outrage.  I would like to suggest that the President has something else in mind long-term.

The tax cuts will now expire on December 31, 2012.  If the world hasn’t ended already, this will give the Obama campaign several strong angles from which to hurl talking points during the election. 

  • He will have a popular position in wanting to extend tax cuts to the middle class only, and raise taxes on the rich, who have received bailout after bailout and not given back.  This will be the polar opposite of the Republican candidates position.
  • If the economy is still in shambles, he can say - Look, after a decade of doing it their way, we gave it yet another try and it still failed.  It’s time to stop listening to these clowns.  He can point out, legitimately, that he tried to do it his way and the Republicans blocked him until he did it their way again.  He can make an appeal to the people to give him a mandate to throw these idiots to the wolves.

I understand that I am grasping at straws here.  This is a huge defeat for this administration and, as one of the Democratic base I am extremely disappointed.  As one moderate Democrat told me today, “For the first time I regret my vote for Obama.  Not against McCain, but against Hillary.”

Before you decide to withhold your vote in 2012, consider the Republican alternative and the ramifications thereof.  But do me a favor and drop Hillary a note.  Let her know a 2012 primary challenge might scare Obama enough to give him a spine and actually force him to govern like a Democrat the rest of his term.


  1. doug says

    Kel…you want to replace one corporate centrist (Obama) with another??(Hillary)
    I believe their policy positions were virtually identical going into the 2008 primaries.
    I say it over and over and over again, but THAT is the thing that matters. I’ve seen NO BETTER PREDICTOR for how a politician turns out governing, that what they were like BEFORE they got elected. Not their rhetoric, but their POLICY POSITIONS. How they voted, who they took money from e.t.c. It’s not very hard to figure out.
    Now Kucinich, Alan Grayson, even Russ Feingold would be worth a gamble for change I could believe in. I understand these are all males, and can understand the desire to have our first female president, but…guess what?..females don’t necessarily govern more progressively than males. (See Maggie Thatcher, Michelle Bachman)
    Let’s not let the same thinking that got democrats to choose Obama over Kucinich in the primaries, continue now.
    Isn’t the point to have learned something? Anything?

  2. RockheadedMama says

    No way Jose! I’m voting for a Progressive next time. I’d say Flaming Liberal if I thought one would run.
    I am also calling both Senators tomorrow and telling them to allow ALL the tax cuts to expire. Why should the poor and middle class do without or less Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid benefits just so a millionaire can get $108,000 back a year in taxes the government is willing to forgive? I’m also writing Senator Bernie Sanders to request he filibuster this nonsense. If he does, I think any vote by the Dems to overcome the filibuster will give us a great deal of information.
    BTW, where are all the Tea Party “deficit hawks” who only two months ago were so concerned about the deficit? What? McConnell and “main stream republicans” already knew the Tea Party crowd were liars about “deficits” and “job creation”? Here’s where the rubber meets the road, Tea Party people – you either are very angry about the extra $300 billion added to the deficit with no job creation (and this money makes it impossible for any job stimulus bill in the next two years too) OR you are liars. I’m guessing I already know the answer and am also guessing none of you even understands the consequences you and your children will pay.

  3. Scott Barzilla says

    Your battle will always be saddling up with someone that can get you some of what you want but not all or none of what you want, but will fight the good fight. Centrists can be distasteful for progressives, but I’m not sure a true progressive wins in this current political climate. Maybe I am pessimistic.

  4. AstrosGirlKel says

    You had me at Russ Feingold.
    I don’t believe Hillary would have rolled over and taken this compromise. She voted against the tax cuts in the first place.
    I don’t ‘want’ a corporate centrist, but our options are either ‘corporate centrist’ that is electable or ‘crazy right wing nut job’. I do not like this compromise but I’ll be damned if I sit back and watch Democrats usher in another 8 years of Reagan/Bush Jr. governing.

  5. alienHunter says

    I knew I should have taken those 3 people up on their offer to vote for me.
    Seriously, I gave up playing by the rules when I was ten years old. It just doesn’t pay…
    It occurred to me that we all are in a vice-like grip held by what all conventional wisdom would describe as LOSERS! Fear of Failure! What human being has ever accomplished anything that couldn’t allow themselves the option of making a mistake. That’s the very definition of the reactionary. It also occurred to me that is the appeal of the Tealiban candidates. It’s not their politics, their politics are insane, what has enamored the independent is the Tealiban’s “throw caution to the wind” and let the chips fall where they may attitude. If a sane President would saddle a little bit of that attitude he could ride into Washington a conquering hero!

  6. carguy says

    Kel wrote: “I understand that I am grasping at straws here”.

    You know I like and respect you. And, I understand what Obama did and why. But we elected him for “change”. “Change” in the way Washington and our government operates. “Change” in the way the rich get the proceeds from the well and the middle class ALWAYS get the shaft. “Change” from the way republicans obstruct government. Right now, those despicable bastards are holding up BOTH the START treaty and DADT. And, responsible spending. We “told” hime wew wanted to end the war in Afghanistan. Now, we are told it weill be 2012-2014 before we can “safely” exit the conflict. IF THEN.
    Will I vote republican. NEVER! But I am like most here, exstremely disappointed and disenfranchised.

  7. doug says

    Business as usual (electing an electable corporate centrist) is not going to get it done. This is a time in history, when we cannot afford slow change.
    The best guess is that around 2050/2055 the entire continental United States is going to be in a permanent drought, without extreme reductions in greenhouse gases.
    A Marshall plan, combined with Las Alamos, combined with the New Deal, combined with the Apollo program effort, is required to deal with that NOW.
    2050 is only 40 years away.
    Slow change equals death.

  8. carguy says

    I DO think that Hillary would have received the same “lack of respect” Obama has received from the “rich white guys club”. But, I suspect, although I am not sure, she would have been less likely to put up with it. But, we’ll never know.
    My only experience with Hillary was what she did with health care reform back when. I was temporarily out of work so I saw every minute of her appearance before congress. She was feisty, but diplomatic. I full expect that, just like Obama being the fiurst black president, she would have had the same roadblocks as the first woman president. OTOH, I’d bet she would not have had any reluctance to “knee these despicable republicans in the nads” if it was called for.
    You can’t draw a line in the sand if you don’t have a sword.

  9. alienHunter says

    This one is for you…
    When did April 1st and April 10th occur on the same day.
    hint: It didn’t involve physical time travel… :)
    Another one:
    Scottish Highlanders have a history of oil work. Why?
    hint: Kenneth Mackenzie

  10. carguy says

    You’ve got me there, on both.
    BREAKING NEWS! Both house and senate democrats are talking about altering Obama’s “negotiated” deal with the GOP. That COULD be interesting.

  11. alienHunter says

    You’re not even gonna try…okay.
    another hint for the 1st one: Julian/Gregorian
    another hint for the 2nd one: The Brahan Seer
    Sounds like Obama is crying a river…as we speak!

  12. carguy says

    I figured it had something to do with the calendar “switch”.
    But, #2 is way beyond my area of expertise. Sorry.
    I WILL return the favor. Who was the VERY unlikely person who caught Brett Favre’s FIRST pass as an NFL quarterback?

  13. alienHunter says

    Y.A. Tittle?
    no, not really…let’s see…I cheated. That is pretty unlikely. Let’s see if any fair players can take a shot??

  14. alienHunter says

    I’m only ‘passing’ good at sports trivia…Nyuk! Nyuk! Nyuk!
    Who was the 1st multiple sport professional athlete…not counting Jim Thorpe!

  15. carguy says

    WTH…..YOU don’t know the answer??? I was just guessing.
    Who was that NFL defensiuve lineman with the big handlebar mustache who became a professional wrestler???? Ben something????

  16. doug says

    Hi AstrogirlKel,
    Did you hear that Clinton (Bill) met with Obama a couple of days ago, and endorsed the tax deal? Do you still believe that Hillary would not have??
    I don’t think I’m aware of Bill and Hillary ever being apart on an issue.
    Again, the general point being that they were largely identical in their political views coming into the 2008 election, and I think there is every reason to believe that had she been elected she would have had very similar policies to Obamas.
    Don’t know if you saw my comment before but this is NO TIME to play around with business as usual in politics.
    We are on the edge of environmental apocalypse.

  17. WindorSolarPlease says

    Hi Doug,
    Quoting You: We are on the edge of environmental apocalypse.
    Let me count the ways that we are environmentally in trouble.
    Health Care
    Senior Benefits
    And So On
    I think that edge is behind us, and we are falling.
    The rich had their bail out, now this.
    It feels like they are grabbing what they can.
    What happens when you know a storm is heading your way, you grab what is important to you.
    Feels like they are grabbing what they can before the storm.

  18. doug says

    Hi Astrogirlkel,
    Listen, I know we feel the same way about things and want the same things, but my disagreement with you is just on the matter of how we get there.
    There is NO TIME TO WAIST, and voting for Hillary to me, seems like a total waste, and a lateral move, because she would not be all that different from Obama.
    In your list you did not mention global warming among your environmental concerns. It’s a hard issue to wrap your mind around, but I have read the equivalent of about 30 books on the subject and have followed the back and forth among the climate scientists as they talk to each other.
    I cannot overstate how important it is that humanity focus on this subject and if we do so gradually, we will do so at our own peril.
    I have used the analogy before and it still stands. If I am standing in the road, and global warming is the truck that is coming down the road towards me, the Republican politician will just let me stand there and be killed, whereas the corporate democrats will do me the favor of pushing me a few feet towards the side of the road, but not quickly enough to get out of the way of the truck.
    In the end, it didn’t matter much which politician was in charge.
    Get it?
    It’s time to fight for the only change that will save us.

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