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U.S. President Barack Obama hosts a bipartisan meeting with Congressional leaders in the Roosevelt Room of White House to discuss the economy, November 16, 2012. Left of President Obama is Speaker of the House John Boehner.                             REU
The House of Representatives will vote Thursday evening on House Speaker John Boehner's "Plan B," his alternative fiscal cliff curb proposal that's little more than him thumbing his nose at President Barack Obama. The vote is expected after 7:30 PM ET.

While it seems unlikely he won't be able browbeat his caucus in the end, he's running into some opposition from the fringes in his extremist caucus, losing eleven members so far. He can only afford to lose 24 Republicans. He's unlikely to get more than a few Blue Dog Democrats. The fact that the vote is coming so late in the day suggests that he has a lot of arm-twisting to do during the course of Thursday.

He's really having to work for it, according to the subscription-only Roll Call.

House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., and his team were hard at work trying to sell Boehner’s plan, but by press time, no one but Boehner had expressed total optimism that the legislation would be successful. [...]

Nevertheless, a member of the whip team said they tried to sell the plan by telling lawmakers that Obama and congressional Democrats made a political calculation to go off the fiscal cliff, allowing tax rates to go up and deep spending cuts known as sequestration to kick in starting Jan. 2, because the American public would blame Republicans. [...]

Right-wing activists added pressure by beginning to mobilize on Wednesday, encouraging members to vote against the plan B and vowing to fund primary challengers in the districts of members who back it.

Having Grover Norquist sign off on the bill hasn't been enough on the tax side for all these members. So at the eleventh hour Wednesday, he added in another sweetener, bill to add more spending cuts and remove defense cuts from the automatic spending cuts scheduled to take effect at the end of the year.

All this to try to foist the blame for the failure of negotiations onto the president, which probably won't work anyway. The American public has already made up its mind about the Republican Party, and thinks that it's the side that should be making making more compromises. When the deal falls apart, 48 percent of the people will blame Republicans no matter what, says this CNN/ORC International poll.

That's not just important for Boehner to understand; it's critical for President Obama. He's already conceded far too much, particularly considering the entirely predictable Republican reaction to his overtures. He needs to be done with making offers.

9:34 AM PT: Dueling statements: The White House says Boehner doesn't have the votes.

"Senior administration officials have been told by Republicans that the reason the Speaker turned to Plan B is that he concluded that he couldn't get sufficient Republican support for the offer that he presented to the President over the weekend," the White House official told BuzzFeed.
Cantor says they do have the votes. We'll find out by the end of the day. It's moot, anyway. The Senate is highly unlikely to take up the bill.

10:22 AM PT: Oops. The above quote from the White House is about Boehner's previous proposal, not his "Plan B," which seems to be having some trouble of it's own.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 08:37 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Between your diary and mine (8+ / 0-)

    it seems like this vote is either going to be a squeaker or not happen at all.

    Here's my question, if Norquist is OK with this bill, would he be OK with ending taxes for people making over 900k? 800k, once he's ok with this bill how can he logically and eloquently defend the 250k mark?

    well we know he can't, but I'd like to see him try.

  •  What is the over/under on (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bubbanomics

    a) when the vote occurs (meaning closes, ), if it even occurs; and
    b) when they announce that the vote has been "postponed indefinitely"?

    My guess is a) never; b) 4:45 PM, just as Boehner is into his third or fourth glass.

  •  Who is negotiating in good faith? (9+ / 0-)

    I think that is really the real question for all Americans. One side is willing to have everyone sacrifice, including the elderly, the poor, the disabled. The other side still wants to protect millionaires and billionaires.
    This is the picture that needs to go through all of America. This is the picture that all of America needs to see.

    •  Well for one, I'd suggest we concentrate our (3+ / 0-)

      well being on Congressional Democrats. The White House is an independent actor we can't trust to do the best thing for the least among us.

      Fiscal cliff politics: Dems target GOP House members

      The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is running radio and Web ads that target 21 vulnerable Republican House members for “holding the middle class hostage” during the fiscal cliff negotiations.

      http://www.publicintegrity.org/...

      Vote Tea Party Taliban! Bring the Burqa to America.

      by Pescadero Bill on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:40:01 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Wish media would hold Repubs to account (0+ / 0-)

      I wonder how many media elites truly want to see entitlements cut. Or how many just think there's some inherent virtue in seeing both sides sacrifice something important to their base regardless of what effect it will actually have...

      "Today is who you are" - my wife

      by I Lurked For Years on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:52:46 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Here is what right wing activists did (6+ / 0-)

    when they saw something the disagreed with...

    Right-wing activists added pressure by beginning to mobilize on Wednesday, encouraging members to vote against the plan B and vowing to fund primary challengers in the districts of members who back it.
    Our side...we argue on blogs and just say meh...whatever happens happens...

    Why are we not arguing for primary challenges to those willing to vote for cuts to earned benefits to pay for tax cuts to people making above 250k?

    Why are we not asking POTUS 2016 candidates their positions?

    What is the problem?   Can we get going?

    "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

    by justmy2 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 08:55:13 AM PST

    •  Cause we're smarter than that, I hope. (7+ / 0-)

      POTUS 2016 candidates?  What?
      Primarying our people less than 2 months after they win their election?

      Copying the Tea Party= Bad Idea.

      •  justmy2, I read over my comment above. It's too (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        concernedamerican

        harsh.  Sorry, I didn't mean it to be that way.

      •  We are a loyal opposition (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        blueoregon, hooper

        not domestic economic terrorists and anarchists. I hope we stay that way. Other than showing up in greater numbers, I don't see a single trait worth emulating among the voters or the elected officials that made this mess--and 2010--possible.

        More madness is not the way forward.

        The choice of our lifetime: Mitt Romney, It Takes A Pillage or President Barack Obama, Forward Together.

        by FiredUpInCA on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:21:21 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Showing up in greater numbers is pretty much (0+ / 0-)

          exactly what we need, I think.  We've figured out how to win elections, with massive in-person GOTV.  But imo we haven't yet found how to push policies successfully.  We haven't figured a winning strategy for issues.  

          I suspect the solution might be similar...that we need huge numbers of us, in the real physical world.  Giant outdoor gatherings, rallies, marches, occupations, re-occupations, etc.

      •  copying the tea party is actually a good thing (0+ / 0-)

        they lost an election and are still driving the conversation...give me their tactics...our policies every day of the week (beyond the racist antics).  Grassroots principled activism?  What is wrong with that?

        The difference is they are for insanity.  We are for the public good.

        "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

        by justmy2 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:50:18 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Sorry, you aren't for the public good (0+ / 0-)

          If you envy the tea party. Remember they held the whole county hostage over the debt ceiling. Let me also remind you that the Democrats are a broad coalition so we all don't think the same or have the same priorities. Do you know what that means? It means that we have to compromise for unity of all of our causes. The tea party is a purity movement, something we shouldn't and couldn't replicate anyways.

          I think people are confusing tactics with power. The tea party are foot soldiers of the rich elite like the Koch brothers and have their backing. That is why they seem to still drive the narrative in your opinion.

          •  you are not talking about the tea party (0+ / 0-)

            you are talking about a bunch of elected idiots...

            What the tea party did was drive the  Republican party to respect their values, and stand for the principles they espoused.   That is called advocacy.  The reasons that progressives don't succeed is because they don't advocate.

            The point isn't about their insane positions.  It is about how the use the tools of grassroots advocacy to ensure that the people they elected stand up for the principles they were elected to defend.

            It doesn't matter who the tea party is or who supports them.  The point is that they changed the national conversation, elected new representatives, and even they weren't so stupid would have driven their principles into law.

            If your goal isn't to pass progressive legislation, then I am not sure why you are here.   You seem to believe the power is in the hands of politicians, and you are only there to elect them.   I could not disagree more.  And until people realize they have the power, and don't have to accept the status quo, they really have no basis for questioning the results of any legislation.  I sometime wonder if President said, we have to privatize medicare, Republicans won the house after supporting the Ryan Budget, many would literally say that is what it take to  

            compromise for unity of all of our causes
            Compromise doesn't mean ignore your core values for the sake of unity.  That isn't how you legislate, negotiate, or should live.  I am so proud of folks like Lincoln, Johnson, King, Gahndi, and the LGBT community in recent years for not accepting the idea that unity for the sake of unity was more important than progress.  Every now and then we get to a point where every realizes the status quo is unacceptable.  

            I find it amazing that one would think the Koch Bros have more power than the people, especially after the election.

            To be blunt, I reject your premise.  And I do not believe my fate is in the hands of politicians once I pull a lever for them. It remains in my hands, and how willing I am to fight, and how willing I am to attempt to identify other willing to fight for what is right...not fight for unity of bad ideas.

            "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

            by justmy2 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:52:18 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Your core values maybe aren't the same as mine (0+ / 0-)

              Which is a point I want to get across. What tools of advocacy? The tea party figuratively strapped bombs on themselves and threatened to blow everybody up, including themselves. Sorry but saying we need to be the craziest self defeating idiots in the room is not a winning strategy. Maybe if you have delusions of making some politicians in gerymandered districts step to your command but good luck convincing anybody else to join you.

              Ofcourse you'd reject the premise of compromise, it's what purists do. Purists also lose on the national scale. MLK built coalitions.

              Btw, I didn't mean unity for unity sake, I meant cooperation so we'd have a better chance of getting what we want. Obama won with a coalition. The problem with your approach is that you want to force me to follow your causes. You assume I'm already with you but that may not be the case. I may ask something from you before I'd ever lift a finger. Without people like me your causes die because purists are on their own, and they lose on their own.

              •  You keep linking the tools of advocacy (0+ / 0-)

                with the people who are executing them.  

                If the tea party was electing people that hold your core values, would you be denigrating their techniques?  Not the loons they elected and how they act in Congress.  Their techniques for getting them there.

                Finally guess what, building coalitions and not compromising even if the deal is bad are not mutually exclusive.

                George Bush built a coalition around a bad idea.   He didn't compromise while building it.

                MLK built a coalition around a set of core principles.  Please do not pretend that MLK compromised his values.  He stood by them, and to pretend otherwise is not very wise or nice.

                You see, I am for compromise.  I am not for capitulation.  That is my core. You have your own.

                I am proud of maintain a set of core values.  Call that purity if you want.   I call it moral. (I won't list the times over history where folks who went against their core values when comprising created more bad than good).

                I am not trying to force you to follow my causes.  I am trying to force politicians to stick to the core principles the espouse on the campaign trail.

                In your world, and tell me if I am wrong, if a Democrat decided in office that a worthy compromise was privatizing medicare, that would be ok.  It isn't about holding to a core.  It is about halving the baby to make sure something passes.

                Well, some things are worth passing.  

                In this case, going to 400k instead of 250k.  Thats compromise.  Eliminating the payroll tax decrease, or identifying cuts to Democratic and Republican agencies.  That is compromise.

                One side taking a hard vote that the public is against, and the side pretending to take a hard vote that the public is for is not compromise.

                But that is my opinion....you have yours.  And you seem to be somewhat blinded by the policy prescriptions of the tea party, vs the success they have had in terms of electing representatives at the local, state, and national level of a short period of time.  To not want progressives in office...well that is beyond me.

                "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

                by justmy2 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 01:02:40 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

    •  Well, I called my Teabagging/Birther Congressman (14+ / 0-)

      and told him that he should vote against that awful commie/liberal/job killing/anti-god Plan B

    •  I linked to this article above, but I'll add it (0+ / 0-)

      here as well

      It's a appears to be a good start at painting the republicans responsible, at least weak ones, for the log jam in Congress.

      “It’s not really common to see much Democratic or Republican congressional spending this soon after an election,” said Michael Franz of the Wesleyan Media Project, which tracks and analyzes campaign advertising. “The permanent campaign is really here.”

      As part of its “GOP Hostage Takers” campaign, the DCCC is targeting U.S. representatives with radio and web ads called the “Holiday Cliff,” which look and sound like mock movie trailers, complete with a car hurtling off a winding mountain road.

      http://www.publicintegrity.org/...

      Congressional democrats may be learning how to play hardball.

      Vote Tea Party Taliban! Bring the Burqa to America.

      by Pescadero Bill on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:47:56 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  In light of this vote (10+ / 0-)

    Obama should immediately pull his last offer off the table.

    If you took the greed out of Wall Street all you’d have left is pavement ~Robert Reich

    by k8dd8d on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:02:03 AM PST

    •  They rejected it. (7+ / 0-)

      It vanished into the ether. That's how it works. Now he can repeat the fact that he was more than generous with his offer and the GOP was unreasonable. It was a good strategy. And all of the complaining on sites like this will likely help prove how generous his now defunct offer was.

      Impeach Norquist!

      by kitebro on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:14:37 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Agree--that offer is gone (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      concernedamerican

      Joan McCarter:

      He's already conceded far too much, particularly considering the entirely predictable Republican reaction to his overtures. He needs to be done with making offers
      .

      Seems to me that the conceding-too-much offer ended as soon as Boehner (a) said "no way" and (b) brought forward his Plan B to the House. Boehner rejected the president's offer and made a counter-offer.

      The president doesn't have to treat the counter-offer as the new starting point: it simply means that Boehner rejected Obama's proposal.

      Back to Square One.

  •  So I presume they'll vote then blow town until (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    hulibow, TomP, blueoregon, True North

    Next week

    The 1st Amendment gives you the right to say stupid things, the 1st Amendment doesn't guarantee a paycheck to say stupid things.

    by JML9999 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:02:18 AM PST

    •  Next week... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JML9999

      "Next week" is a few days between the Christmas and New Year's Eve.

      Boehner tries to ensure that the House isn't too overburdened by being required to turn up for work. Surely he won't try to make them fly back to Washington immediately after Christmas to vote on stuff?

  •  Plan B for bourbon as Stephanie Miller explains it (6+ / 0-)

    She gets spot on with just a few words.

    Every time Boehner begins speaking at a press conference, I have flashbacks to Foster Brooks, from the 1970's:

    Foster Brooks roasts Hubert Humphrey
    (Runtime 0:05:45)
    http://www.youtube.com/...

    *Austerity is the opposite of Prosperity*

    by josmndsn on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:02:23 AM PST

  •  Right. All this to shift blame to the President so (11+ / 0-)

    people won't vote for him next time.

  •  I'm dreaming here... (12+ / 0-)

    but I'd love to see a Democratic President call out Republicans and in the process, stand up for the very popular New Deal and the Great Society and explain why the Republicans hate it, and why the Democrats delivered it.

    Get your goddamned guns out of my church. This means you.

    by commonmass on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:03:37 AM PST

    •  It would be an historic move (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pescadero Bill, hester, commonmass

      and incredibly popular with the American public.

      They have to get out of the Bubble and stand up to the corporate lobbyists.  They have to realize that letting corporations run the country will be the ruin of us all.

      Democratic Leaders must be very clear they stand with the working class of our country. Democrats must hold the line in demanding that deficit reduction is done fairly -- not on the backs of the elderly, the sick, children and the poor.

      by Betty Pinson on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:51:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  He should step down. (0+ / 0-)

    He's completely ineffective and afraid of his caucus. But then again, they'll probably replace him with a crazy Teabagger.

  •  Tomorrow Obama needs to go back to $250,000 (12+ / 0-)

    ...and take Social Security and Medicare back off the table. Tell Boehner - and the American People - he had his chance and blew it.

    "Do you realize that fluoridation is the most monstrously conceived and dangerous Communist plot we have ever had to face?" - General Jack D. Ripper

    by wilder5121 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:05:34 AM PST

    •  He can't. He already fucked that up. It is either (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      DRo, Enzo Valenzetti, justmy2

      this deal or the cliff. But seeing how this has gone, it is either going to get worse or get much much better (cliff).

      •  Just wondering (0+ / 0-)

        Should Obama consider developing his negotiation strategies with someone else - perhaps Biden or any other Dem in Congress who has better skills?  

        Just a thought.  Negotiating just isn't one of his strong points.

        Democratic Leaders must be very clear they stand with the working class of our country. Democrats must hold the line in demanding that deficit reduction is done fairly -- not on the backs of the elderly, the sick, children and the poor.

        by Betty Pinson on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:55:50 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I'll take the cliff (0+ / 0-)

        I am tired of hostage taking.

        President Obama, January 9, 2012: "Change is hard, but it is possible. I've Seen it. I've Lived it."

        by Drdemocrat on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:06:55 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  A $50 Billion Bribe (6+ / 0-)
    Mr. Boehner’s statement suggested confidence that Republican leaders would have the votes to pass his plan. But lawmakers who were counting votes for the leadership said the tally was short, and House leaders were adding provisions to the speaker’s bill to mollify dissidents.

    Some Republicans, for example, objected that the plan would do nothing to prevent the automatic military cuts, about $50 billion, from taking effect in January. To satisfy Republican hawks, leaders will hold a separate vote on legislation, nearly identical to a bill passed earlier this year, that would cancel those cuts and instead shift them to domestic programs, a decision likely to amplify Democratic opposition.

    NY Times 12-20

    Resist much, obey little. ~~Edward Abbey, via Walt Whitman

    by willyr on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:05:41 AM PST

  •  Obama has already promised to veto (8+ / 0-)

    Plan B, has he not?  That being the case, why does Boehner want this vote?  Does he think he can shift blame back to the president?

  •  Boehner seems to be a lot smarter than his caucus (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DownstateDemocrat

    If no deal is reached, both sides will be judged by what they've put on the table in concrete terms for all to see.

    The most "out-there" members of the GOP can talk primaries all they want, but going over the fiscal curve with what appears to be a cavalier indifference to the effect it has on the American public is a great way to render all of those primaries moot, and to set up an election that could forever after be known as "The Great Slaughter of '14".

    Remember guys:

    Pigs get fat.
    Hogs get slaughtered.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:08:35 AM PST

  •  At first I thought Boehner was crazy like a fox, (5+ / 0-)

    but now I am wondering if he is just crazy. Or floundering. Perhaps it's time for someone to pry the Speakership from his cold almost-dead hands.

    For if there is a sin against life, it consists perhaps not so much in despairing of life as in hoping for another life and in eluding the implacable grandeur of this life. - Albert Camus

    by Anne Elk on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:08:40 AM PST

    •  Boehner (0+ / 0-)

      can at least say he acted to prevent the expiring tax cut provisions, which is better than being accused of holding them hostage for "millionaires and billionaires."  He'll still be accused of that, of course, but at least Plan B gives him some room to weasel.

      Things work out best for those who make the best of the way things work out.

      by winsock on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:25:58 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Welcome to the United States of Michigan (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mcmom

    Of course we can depend on the President to Veto it.   Right?  RIGHT?

    Oh wait, this doesn't have anything to do with Notaries.  or a continuing budget....

    sooo.... yeah...

    I don't blame Christians. I blame Stupid. Which sadly is a much more popular religion these days.

    by detroitmechworks on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:08:47 AM PST

  •  If... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DownstateDemocrat

    This doesn't pass, then can we all say that the GOP isn't open to ANY tax increases?  And if we say that, can we agree that any further negotiations with them are fruitless?

    'Goodwill' between the GOP and the President is as abundant as unicorn farts - Me'

    by RichM on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:10:33 AM PST

  •  HAHAHAHA! (22+ / 0-)

    HAHAHAHA!

    The good news is it looks right now like conservatives will succeed in defeating this bill. Based on the best intelligence I’ve been able to gather there are 34 Republicans who will vote against raising taxes and 12 others still thinking about it. Please call the good guys up and urge them to stay strong and resist the pressure from the leadership team to cave. And call the members on the fence and urge them to stick with their conservative principles and oppose the tax hike.
  •  But...but...but...Obama was "whining", Obama is... (5+ / 0-)

    as "sell-out"...Obama is a "terrible negotiator"...

    How can the American people blame Republicans for "failure to avoid the fiscal cliff"?  I mean really?  Don't they read D. Kos?

    Go figure.  Maybe Obama knows Republicans better than we do?

    Tax and Spend I can understand. I can even understand Borrow and Spend. But Borrow and give Billionaires tax cuts? That I have a problem with.

    by LiberalCanuck on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:13:13 AM PST

    •  Rob Nabors (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BlackClouds, kefauver
      “It’s Nabors, who is Obama’s chief congressional liaison, who’s in the closed-door negotiations...

      He’s our Congress whisperer,” says David Plouffe, a senior Obama adviser, of the famously soft-spoken Nabors. “Rob’s got a great instinct for where the deal lies, what Democrats are willing to do, what Republicans are willing to do. He’ll say, ‘Here’s what’s going on, here are what the odds are of success.’ He doesn’t ever paint a rosier picture than exists.”

      http://www.washingtonpost.com/...

      It's possible that President Obama and Rob Nabors know what's going on in the room and what votes are available for various scenarios.

      They may actually know more than diarists and commenters at Daily Kos.

      The choice of our lifetime: Mitt Romney, It Takes A Pillage or President Barack Obama, Forward Together.

      by FiredUpInCA on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:30:08 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  R U Questioning the Best Psychics on the Internet? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        FiredUpInCA
        They may actually know more than diarists and commenters at Daily Kos.

        When President Obama actually signs Social Security and Medicare cuts into law, then I'll agree with you that he is a "sellout."

        by kefauver on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 12:45:33 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Your lack of sarcasm (0+ / 0-)

      on an issue that is far from put to bed is just absolutely inspiring.

      I think if you dial the tone up a bit on how much smarter you are than the people you disagree with in an even smarmier way, you'll really be doing something positive here.

  •  I've been a defender of some blue dogs before (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MKinTN, TheLizardKing, ferg

    Especially those in districts that they are essentially the best democrat we could get, but I don't see any reason at all for any democrat, blue dog or not, to vote for this. The bill won't pass the senate and won't be signed into law, plus is opposed by several antitax groups, what reason could a blue dog have to vote for it? If you call yourself a democrat you have to vote against it.

  •  So any Obama deal would have required House (0+ / 0-)

    Democrats to go it alone again.

    I mean- reading between the obvious lines- if the GOP can't even pass the more extreme bill of the two extreme bills, that tells me they expected to use just House Democrats with the Obama bill.

    Says a lot.

  •  How many Democrats will vote for Plan B? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DownstateDemocrat, Heftysmurf

    Ok, so some of the Teabaggers vote against Plan B, but what about our DINOs?   With our President all worried about doing the Thelma and Louise act, I am getting where I cannot trust Pelosi to herd her cats away from the stinky cheese Bonnerhead dropped on the House floor.

    Elizabeth Warren 2016!

    by windwardguy46 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:16:26 AM PST

  •  If Boehner loses this vote... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DRo, True North

    he's done as speaker. He's just trying to save his ass at his point.

    Which leads me to believe the vote will never happen.

    News & views about the 2012 Elections and the 2012 National Conventions at Democratic Convention Watch

    by Oreo on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:21:40 AM PST

    •  I don't think he'll lose the vote (0+ / 0-)

      If he doesn't think he has the votes then he won't bring the bill to a vote. I mean that's what a competent Speaker would do right?

    •  Not necessarily (0+ / 0-)

      It's more important to Boehner that a vote is taken, not that it passes.  He doesn't want to be seen as doing nothing.  I guess we'll see if the vote actually happens.

      Things work out best for those who make the best of the way things work out.

      by winsock on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:47:14 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  When the two principals are stumbling as much (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    MKinTN, citizenx

    as these two principals are, it has to be extremely frustrating for the staff.

    •  I am not convinced Boehner is stumbling (0+ / 0-)

      I think he believes the President will fold on the debt ceiling, so he wants to get over the cliff.  The President actually doesn't.

      So while we may think going over the cliff is fine, it may not be if the President decides that means he has to rush into a deal post new year.

      Doesn't this play like Obama is in a rush and Boehner is wasting time?  Shouldn't it be the other way around?

      "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

      by justmy2 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:57:54 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not to me. It looks to me like Obama wants to (0+ / 0-)

        get a bipartisan deal the, more than anything, avoids a fight over the debt ceiling. Not because he thinks he will lose that fight but because he doesn't want to fight it at all. What he really wants to do is get immigration done because, lets face it, if we don't it is going to hurt the Democratic Party for sure. Not getting something done on immigration is leaves a wide opening for a Republican to step into the breach.

        As far as Boehner is concerned, he's mainly up against the fact that Republicans are going to take the heavy weight of the damage from their own base if they don't cut spending that makes Democrats squeal. So he's just maneuvering for more pain on Democrats. That's how he stays in power. That's what this plan B is all about...forcing the president to go up to a million on the tax side so that revenues drop, and then forcing the president to cut spending more in order to maintain balance. The thing he doesn't seem to see is the President doesn't have as much control over the Democrats as Boehner thinks he does.

        So once this passes, the president has to have the balls to just take the hit from calling off negotiations and just moving on. Otherwise, he's going to get negotiated down into a fuck of a deal just to get "something" done. And knowing him, that's exactly what he will do. Then he will have to browbeat Democrats into submission which will mean all the damage from this will be on the side that lost the election. But my thinking is that this is a miscalculation and that ultimately enough Democrats will abandon the president late in the day as they start looking out for themselves.

        •  Actually...i think you just agreed with me? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          brooklynbadboy

          I may not have articulated it well..but this was my main point..

          Not to me. It looks to me like Obama wants to (0+ / 0-)

          get a bipartisan deal the, more than anything, avoids a fight over the debt ceiling. Not because he thinks he will lose that fight but because he doesn't want to fight it at all.

          Thus, my point that he seems to be the one pushing for a deal.

          "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

          by justmy2 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:29:44 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  I commented before I read the entire comment (0+ / 0-)

          but I actually don't disagree with a single thing you wrote?

          What were you  disagreeing with above?

          Other than maybe him caring about how much control the President has over Dems...

          "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

          by justmy2 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:32:06 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Well, on the Boehner not stumbling part. (0+ / 0-)

            He didn't need to do the Plan B thing to box the president in. He merely needed to keep negotiating on the tax side of things to get the president up to a million and then cut a deal.

            Now, the president has every incentive to dig in for a while to give him time to rally Democrats. He could have really snookered the President by waiting and keeping the negotiations going.

            Boehner doen't care about the cliff. More than anything, he cares about making Democrats hurt other Democrats because that's how he stays in power. But he stumbled by doing the Plan B because that only unites Democrats.

            •  I think Boehner thinks he needs protection from (0+ / 0-)

              the media, thus the plan B.   Remember, the President has been running around saying "I have a pen right here ready to sign" a bill with no spending cuts.  Now he saying he won't sign because it doesn't have spending cuts.  It seems to me that if they pass it, Boehner will start getting some media cover that we are not planning for.

              But we agree on where we think he is in terms of the cliff.  Regardless of plan B, my main point and I think your is Obama wants the deal now, Boehner is in no rush, and after the election and the state of play/polls one wonders how this is remotely possible.  

              "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

              by justmy2 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:56:37 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Nah, wont go down like that. (0+ / 0-)

                The bill will never see the light of day. No way the media is going to do Boehner's work for him.

                What is more likely is that media is going to start pushing Boehner to take take a step towards the president by coming down off the million bucks to 500,000. Much more likely.

                Then the president will take that, and have to offer more spending cuts to compensate for the lost revenue. That's a deal that is just shitty enough to piss off everyone and then the corporate push from big business will come to seal it in law.

                Or, Democrats begin to abandon the president in equal numbers that the GOP does, and we end up going over the cliff. That's how I see things going.

            •  And on cue (0+ / 0-)
              Washington (CNN) -- A scheduled showdown vote Thursday evening ... [is reported to include a] second proposal would change the automatic spending cuts set to kick in next year under the fiscal cliff, replacing cuts to the military with reductions elsewhere. ... While considered a negotiating tactic to pressure Obama to make more concessions, the vote also seeks to turn public opinion that now backs the president over Republicans in the talks. ....
              Boehner is going for optics...and he knows the President doesn't want to go over the cliff. He thinks it this passes...he will be able to say our job is done, and ask for concessions if the President doesn't want to go over.

              The question is whether Boehner's read is right. And President's offer and presser makes it seem like Boehner may be on to something...but we shall see.

              "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

              by justmy2 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 11:15:59 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  I have to believe Boehner can get the votes for (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DRo, miracle11

    Plan B.  If he somehow is unable to and has to delay or table the measure or take it to the floor and lose, that would be an "emperor has no clothes" moment for the Speaker.  

    Obama should not attempt again to give Boehner a helping hand.  If Boehner cannot get his caucus in line, then he has no business being at the negotiating table because nothing he says matters.  Boehner has to be pushed to agreeing to a deal that has a minority of GOP votes.  The end result should be an end to Boehner's speakership.  He has been a terrible Speaker.

    Maybe Cantor should lead the GOP House.  The only thing we need from the Republicans is clarity on what they are willing to agree to and what they will oppose.  I would rather have Cantor say to the President "no deal under any circumstances" than to have this Kabuki dance that goes nowhere.  

    Alternative rock with something to say: http://www.myspace.com/globalshakedown

    by khyber900 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:25:26 AM PST

    •  How will Cantor make things better? (0+ / 0-)

      Just curious !!!

      •  He might (0+ / 0-)

        Cantor would probably be able to get the votes for whatever deal was struck. With Boehner, that's an open question.

      •  Cantor has the support of the teabaggers (0+ / 0-)

        He can improve on Boehner by just telling us what he can deliver and what he can't. Given Cantor's closeness to the tea party, if he says he can deliver 100 votes for something, then it probably is a firm statement.

        Boehner's problem (and Obama aids and abets this problem because of his needy desire for compromise and for everyone to get along) is that he makes statements that he can't back up.  

        All I ever want to know from Republicans in Congress is how much of an asshole they intend to be on any piece of legislation.  I don't need any games.  With that clarity, one can strategize better and cease the internal debates, including the ones that Obama appears to have with himself.

         

        Alternative rock with something to say: http://www.myspace.com/globalshakedown

        by khyber900 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:49:13 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Please tell me KagroX is joking...... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    winsock, KingTag

    The 1st Amendment gives you the right to say stupid things, the 1st Amendment doesn't guarantee a paycheck to say stupid things.

    by JML9999 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:29:05 AM PST

    •  Ahh (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JML9999

      so the "B" in Plan B stands for Burma.

      Things work out best for those who make the best of the way things work out.

      by winsock on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:34:05 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  He's not joking (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JML9999

      But I think that is misstating it a bit. The Burmese bill is being used as shell to carry the Plan B legislation.

      Unless, I'm mistaken both sides do that a lot.

      •  It's a shell, yes. (0+ / 0-)

        But the way you get it into that shell is by offering an amendment to the Senate amendment to the resolution. It's a Joint Resolution they're using for this.

        This doesn't get done a whole lot, actually. It's been done, but it's usually done by agreement between the two houses, and I'm not sure that's the case here. The House is using this vehicle so that they don't have to offer the House minority any amendments, or a motion to recommit, either one of which would almost assuredly be used to offer a substitute amendment with the Senate-passed tax cut language in it, pegging the threshold to $250K, and it might just pass that way, with Republican defections.

        Then, if it were to pass the House, the message would be privileged in the Senate, and the motion to proceed to its consideration wouldn't be subject to filibuster, though the bill itself would be. So while this sort of maneuver is sometimes used by both sides, it's usually by agreement, to get something both houses want done moved quickly. The Senate doesn't want this thing, and nobody's really even sure the House does, either.

  •  This (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JML9999, thomask
    That's not just important for Boehner to understand; it's critical for President Obama. He's already conceded far too much, particularly considering the entirely predictable Republican reaction to his overtures. He needs to be done with making offers
    Cannot be said often or loud enough.
  •  crazy logic (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jj32

    If the Plan B fails then there is no chance of a compromise. So the fiscal cliff would happen.

    If the Plan B passes then it indicates that Boehner has some control and some compromise is possible. So that's a good thing for Democrats.

    However, Democrats should vote against Plan B and argue against it. Because it would be a pretty bad result.

    Obama 2012...going to win it with our support!!!

    by mattinjersey on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:33:24 AM PST

    •  or maybe (0+ / 0-)

      maybe it's a good thing if the Plan B fails and then the fiscal cliff happens. On the other hand it's not entirely clear what would happen then.

      some pretty skewed-up logic here!

      Obama 2012...going to win it with our support!!!

      by mattinjersey on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:34:32 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Questions is: DO the teahadists hate Pres Obama (0+ / 0-)

    Enough to vote this plan in?

    •  Democrats+moderate Republicans can work (0+ / 0-)

      Democrats + moderate Republicans can give the President's plan the majority in the house. That's the hope anyway. But any Republican that goes with the President will definitely be primaried.

      •  No such thing. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        ferg
        moderate Republicans

        "I'm totally pro-choice in the matter of abortion. But of course I'm also so radically pro-life that I think every person from birth onward must have full and affordable access to healthcare." - Gail Collins

        by gritsngumbo on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:49:24 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  "conceded too much," a sad, familiar refrain. (0+ / 0-)

    The president still thinks he can reach some kind of agreement with the Rethugs. Why does he keep on this path? Is it the community organizer in him? Or does he think maybe they will like him more? They show the contempt they feel for him by their continual rudeness, especially Boner.

    I think, therefore I am. I think.

    by mcmom on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:33:58 AM PST

  •  Hey, Elected Officials! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DRo

    What the hell happened to the mandate of the people?
    Who was elected president, Obama or Boehner and his Caucus of Fools?

    Stand strong Mr. President, compromise is in order but not from you.

    You take the blue pill, the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill, you stay in Wonderland, and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes. -Morpheus/The Matrix

    by Kaos on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:34:09 AM PST

  •  sorry, I must absolutely recommend (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DRo

    an article by Bill Black over at Huffpo:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

    Speak of critical.

    "To recognize error, to cut losses, to alter course, is the most repugnant option in government." Historian Barbara Tuchman

    by Publius2008 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:37:20 AM PST

  •  The Deal'in is Over, Let the Blame Game Commence (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    thomask

    Its clear the dealing is over, Boehner is not going to offer up a new deal with Republican concessions and President Obama is saying he has already gone far enough towards the GOP (too far as many of us have pointed out).  In fact, it could be argued that Boehner was never going to sign on to any deal that would be even remotely tolerable to our side before next years Speakership vote.

    Anyway, Plan B is all about trying to shift the blame for going over the "curb" from Republicans (where polls show it is now) to Democrats.  Now Democrats need to prevent that from happening by:

    1. Making sure the public understands that Plan B is simply a gimmick to try to get Republicans off the hook.  It does not make most of the upper 2% pay more in taxes as the voters wanted, and does nothing to solve all the other fiscal curb issues.

    2. Making sure in speech after speech and in every media appearance, that the public understands that President Obama made a comprehensive offer to solve the entire "curb" thingy that went (more than) half way towards what Republicans asked for, and that the real reason for going over the "curb" is that Republicans rejected this more than fair proposal.  

    "Some men see things as they are and ask, 'Why?' I dream of things that never were and ask, 'Why not?"

    by Doctor Who on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:39:07 AM PST

  •  Guess "Plan B" Stands for Plan Boehn-Head! (0+ / 0-)

    What an idiotic scheme- waste days on pieceof legislation that is guaranteed to go nowhere, look like you are fiddling while Rome burns, and then not even be able to deliver the votes because your caucus is worshiping at the alter of Norquist. Brilliant! Could not have drawn it up any better!

    Now, we need Obama to toughen his negotiating stance and squeeze!!!

  •  Bohener needs to pass something. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    DRo, hester

    It's crucial for optics. He has to be able to say "We passed X and they wouldn't act on it. They're the ones to blame."

    That's all this is.

    "I'm a dweller on the threshold ..."

    by thresholder on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:41:32 AM PST

  •  I dont think WH is talking about plan B (0+ / 0-)

    when they say Boehner doesnt have the votes.

    They are referring to whatever bill Boehner presented to the president over the weekend.

    But I guess it remains to be seen whether Boehner has the votes for Plan B or not.

    •  Yep. WH is saying if Boehner had votes (0+ / 0-)

      for final offer he made to WH last weekend they'd be voting for that - and that would be real pressure.  However with Boehner's plan B which is full of far right pots of gold to win over his teabagger caucus it shows that his proposal to Pres Obama couldn't even pass his own caucus.

      The NRA is the Gun Manufacturer Lobby. Nothing more. Their pontification about the second amendment is nothing more than their ad jingle. They're the domestic version of the Military Industrial Complex.

      by Jacoby Jonze on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:21:21 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  The two statements in the update are not dueling (0+ / 0-)

    the white house says Boehner doesn't have the votes for what he proposed to Obama, so he resorted to Plan B, for which he does have the votes. There is no contradiction there.

  •  Defense has so much waste! Need to CUT (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    windwardguy46

    They never have to account for what they spend and human nature being what it is, they spend like drunken sailors because who is going to say anything?

    •  Sum total of US Defense greater than worlds budget (0+ / 0-)

      for defense.  If you add the budget of the Defense Department, the Nuclear Weapons Budget in the Energy Department, the Black Ops budget, and Homeland Security all together, the Sum Total is greater than the military budgets of the rest of the world.  Imagine what we could do if we just had half of that amount:  Medicare for All, Free tuition for all, job programs like CETA in the 70s or CCC in the 30s, real global warming solutions...We could do these progressive programs.

      Elizabeth Warren 2016!

      by windwardguy46 on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:14:36 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Not dueling statements, actually (0+ / 0-)

    The White House is speaking about R votes for a potential fiscal cliff deal; Cantor is speaking about Plan B.

    Note, too, that Cantor's language seems to have changed a bit. Two days ago, it was "we have the votes," now it's "we will have the votes."

  •  All this sausage-making (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    hester

    is enough to turn the electorate vegetarian. Which might at least help lower carbon emissions.

  •  Wasn't "Plan B" a Contraceptive? (0+ / 0-)

    And weren't Republicans opposed to it?

    This aggression will not stand, man.

    by kaleidescope on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 09:59:08 AM PST

  •  Plan B stinks & the Repugs lost their best chance (0+ / 0-)

    Here is my e-mail to my Tea Party representative, designed to rub his nose in his party's intransigent stupidity.

    "You and your party will truly regret the failure to accept 'cliff' legislation that included the chained CPI offer from the President. He made that offer in the spirit of compromise. Your rigid Tea Party-supporting and anti-tax ideology prevents you from compromise, and subsequently from any hope of effective governance. You damage our great country by failure to compromise and govern."

  •  I HATE the Bush tax cuts. I personally (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ferg, lina

    would rather go over the cliff.

    I think it is time to sunset all the Bush tax cuts.  I personally would pay a little more in taxes just to end the debacle that was the Bush tax cuts.

    President Obama, January 9, 2012: "Change is hard, but it is possible. I've Seen it. I've Lived it."

    by Drdemocrat on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:05:29 AM PST

  •  Predict (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Jerry056

    Boehner will pass his Plan B, then the House will adjourn for Christmas.

    Leaving the Senate with the choice of cliff or what Boehner wants, with Christmas and families in the back of their minds.

    This was always the plan.

    •  They've tried that before and it doesn't work. (0+ / 0-)

      Senate won't take it up, Pres already gave them cover with the veto threat.  So GOP House will look silly in that they try to force their way and then run home saying "If you don't take our far right bill, you're to blame".  

      This is amateur shit.

      The NRA is the Gun Manufacturer Lobby. Nothing more. Their pontification about the second amendment is nothing more than their ad jingle. They're the domestic version of the Military Industrial Complex.

      by Jacoby Jonze on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:23:30 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  let's stop underestimating our opponents (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    bepanda, Jerry056

    They may be stupid knuckle-draggers but they are still kicking our ass.  The time for gloating is when we defeat them which we have not done yet.

    It IS an achievement of some kind of political skill to hold a caucus together for an unpopular position.  Clearly they are leveraging every other asset they hold (funding superiority, statehouse control even in blue states) to maximum effect.  So for Chrissakes let's hold the gloating now.  As they say, any salesman can sell a good product, but a guy who can sell a piece of shit, that's a real salesman.  He may be an asshole, but you can be one and still be a helluva salesman.

    I am going to assume that Boehner, Norquist et al., are going to pass Plan B in the House and then try to use it to bash Obama for going over the fiscal cliff (assuming he doesn't cave).  They will bash him for insufficient bipartisanism and the useful idiots in the media will not call them out on it.

    What then is our response?  Gloating over the stupidity of Boehner is not going to cut it except for preaching to the choir.

    Instead we need to flip this narrative by blasting Boehner and the GOP with a powerful message.  Not empty gloating.  

    That message is that it is the Republicans who killed any bipartisanship by refusing to allow a vote on anything that couldn't be passed by Republicans alone without any Democratic votes.

    Democrats need talking point about why they aren't considering this.  Not just Obama, if he vetoes it, but every Democrat needs to be able to explain this and explain it clearly

    We must rip the bipartisan mask off any Republicans daring to make that argument.  They have obviously forfeited the right to make that claim.

    But our imprecision diffuses our arguments into bland statements only of interest to those who already agree.

    Our side must do better than this.

    sTiVo's rule: Just because YOU "wouldn't put it past 'em" doesn't prove that THEY did it.

    by stivo on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:21:39 AM PST

  •  Proceed, Mr. Speaker (0+ / 0-)

    It will be fascinating to see how concrete they will be on the Spending side, after fighting past hope to get the President to "go first."

    The President's plan was calculated to lead to this, with no risk that any of his concessions would actually be made.  Time will tell.

  •  Plan B From Outer Space.... (0+ / 0-)

    sorry, can't help it, because it seems like a silly plan to me.
    Doesn't accomplish anything meaningful to solve budget problems.
    It may have the good effect of pushing us to the fiscal bump and over it so that the Republicans and Democrats take responsibility under pressure for doing what needs to be done, responsibly.

    - returning tax levels to at least the Clinton level for incomes over $250,000
    - protecting middle and low income earners
    - reducing the spending on military for profit contracts for unneeded military hardware.
    - providing social and medical resources for those who need it

    and moving the country away from a state of affairs where a Princeton graduate thinks nothing of running a hedge fund (http://www.cerberuscapital.com/) where his shareholders fatten themselves with an expanding investment in the gun industry.
    Why, oh why, do we keep seeing wealthy young and pampered individuals with an ivy league education without an iota of public conscience regarding how they make their oodles of money?
    And without any concern over how a they profit from, in this case, a paranoia driven customer base and a catastrophic culture of violence.

    Finally people have gotten sick and tired of being had and taken for idiots. Mikhail Gorbachev

    by eve on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:38:14 AM PST

  •  Boehners Plan B needs a Plan B pill n/t (0+ / 0-)

    "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

    by Andrew C White on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 10:46:57 AM PST

  •  WH and Dems can come out after this vote... (0+ / 0-)

    and say "The Plan B vote proves that we agree completely on extensions to all $250,000 and below - Since we agree on that why not pass that now?"

    The NRA is the Gun Manufacturer Lobby. Nothing more. Their pontification about the second amendment is nothing more than their ad jingle. They're the domestic version of the Military Industrial Complex.

    by Jacoby Jonze on Thu Dec 20, 2012 at 11:31:16 AM PST

  •  The Curb (0+ / 0-)

    Its time to not only say no but to sa FUCK NO loud and clear. No chained CPI but an increase or elimination to cap on Fica. All income including dividends and cap gains counted for FICA purposes, Let sequestration hit Defense in full, tax full dividends and cap gains as ordinary income. eliminate carried interest. raise the FICA rates to 10% for all inluding gross revenue of corporations since, after all, they are people too. Democrats are such pussies it makes me sick.+

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