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The Democrats are not refusing to negotiate. They are refusing to RE-Negotiate. Big difference.

We are where we are because the Republicans are incapable of accepting a win. Even when they clean our clocks, they cannot simply take their victory lap and reap the glory. Instead, they all get together and decide it would be really great to drive their winning car into the grandstand.

For background

Please watch this video of All In with Chris Hayes:

All In: Governing Stunt to Stunt
The ugly truth about the 'Clean CR'
The "clean CR" is astoundingly close to the 2014 Ryan budget.

If you don't feel like watching the video, you can read this, uses a similar phrase to describe the "clean" CR:

The Dirty Truth About Boehner's Clean Continuing Resolution

But no one should mistake the speaker’s plan for anything other than an attempt to shift the ground in his favor. Consider that the House’s original proposal for discretionary funding was $967 billion for FY 2014. The Senate’s proposal is $1,058 billion, the same as the president’s preferred levels and the original Budget Control Act levels. If Congress accepts Speaker Boehner’s “compromise,” it will be setting the temporary level just $11 billion above the original House proposal but $70 billion below the Senate Democratic leadership and the president’s shared proposal. That hardly seems like a fair compromise.
No, it doesn't seem like a fair compromise, does it? But the Dems took it! They struck an agreement with Boehner that they would accept his number for the budget even though it is basically catastrophic Austerity/Paul Ryan level funding. And this was all done under the radar of most Americans and especially Democrats. Did you know about this?

Reid: Bohner Backed Out of Deal

 I will confess that I didn't. But what Brian Beutler warns about here in a Salon article happened

Obamacare’s largely a distraction here. But the fear, according to Michael Linden, fiscal policy expert at the liberal Center for American Progress, is that if Boehner manages to pass his spending bill in the House, weary Senate Democrats will strip the Obamacare defunding piece from it, and decline the fight over spending levels.

“They wouldn’t accept 988 [billion] for the year-long. Why would they accept anything in the short run that they wouldn’t accept in the yearlong?” he told me. “They might be willing to fight to prevent future cuts. They would find it tough to move from the lower levels they just endorsed.”

The Right's New Dirty Trick To Hold Government Hostage

He's right, of course. This is the Democrats setting themselves up for a return to rational spending in any future budget bill being called an "increase" because they allowed themselves to accept these lower levels on a temporary basis.

But, lucky for us, Boehner and his Party reneged on the deal because even though they had just scored monumentally and even though he got the insane budget numbers he asked for, ridiculously close to the Ryan budget that had been pilloried and ridiculed throughout the entire Presidential election, IT WASN'T ENOUGH!

Now this speaks to what is essentially a character flaw of the Republicans - the inability to stop themselves.

Reflect, they won on the budget numbers. What is a budget but allocating from a starting point? They set the starting point - there is no greater budget victory than that! They should have shouted it from the rooftops. They could have embarrassed the President and demoralized rank and file Democrats and caused us to turn to our typical internecine wars that we specialize in between the "disappointed Progressives" and the "pragmatists".

But they didn't. They weren't sated by the fact that they had collected enough figurative budget antlers to decorate Republican dens with until the next millennium. No, they wanted the head that came with the antlers - the Presidents. Which is why they asked for the defunding of Obamacare in the first place. And when they were denied the head that went with the antlers, they decided they needed to kill the whole damn animal, the government, and have it put on display, stuffed and inanimate.

Currently, John Boehner says over and over "They won't negotiate" - that's his mantra.

The Democrats need to say "We did negotiate with you John and then you screwed us.We had an budget agreement using your own numbers and then you reneged. So, no, we will not RE-Negotiate the agreement we already had about the CR.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (8+ / 0-)

    “Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.” FDR

    by Phoebe Loosinhouse on Sun Oct 06, 2013 at 09:10:48 AM PDT

  •  I think this is a great interpretation of events.. (4+ / 0-)

    Good diary, T&R!

  •  Well, I'll just talk to myself (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    psyched, ActivistGuy, 3goldens, Bisbonian

    This shutdown as devolved to Democrats fighting for what is pretty close to Paul Ryan's budget to be accepted by the Republicans even if only for the short term - and the Republicans aren't taking us up on it!

    Where and what is the endgame? What is "Victory"? What would the President and Reid define as a victory?

    What would you define as a victory?

    Right now, we (the Dems) are united in fighting for Austerity! Does anyone but me think that this is just out and out crazy and that the biggest losers in all of this is the country and the people?

    Exactly when do the Dems begin to fight for a budget that represents the country and the needs of the people? Why are rolling over in the preliminaries? When does the Main Event occur and what happens when it does?

    What the hell is going on?

    “Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.” FDR

    by Phoebe Loosinhouse on Sun Oct 06, 2013 at 09:57:43 AM PDT

    •  They're doing their job (3+ / 0-)

      as the hegemony of wealth dictates it.  Following corporate orders is what 21st century Dems call "pragmatism".  Any slightest deviation from strict corporate dictates is denounced and ridicule as "purism".  If we choose to remain locked inside the game as the political unipolar force of capital has defined it means this is as good as it can possibly ever get.

      Clap On, Clap Off, The Clapper!

      by ActivistGuy on Sun Oct 06, 2013 at 11:06:42 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  It appears that little pressure was (0+ / 0-)

        required to get Boehner's number accepted -  Harry Reid himself described it as "a little arm twisting" because I guess he had to show some reluctance.

        I have to wonder if the easy roll didn't embolden Boehner to renege and up the ante, since that is human nature when we obtain something too easily - "Sh*t! I should have asked for more!"

        Meanwhile, Boehner's public wish list for serious budget talks is:

        Means testing of Medicare, generalized cuts to Medicare, some cuts to the ACA, and chained CPI.

        So far, the President is on the record as being for "entitlement reform" and specifically chained CPI. So, based on the negotiation history so far, who will be surprised when we "compromise" and GIVE ALL OF THIS and then they still aren't satisfied?

        “Human kindness has never weakened the stamina or softened the fiber of a free people. A nation does not have to be cruel to be tough.” FDR

        by Phoebe Loosinhouse on Sun Oct 06, 2013 at 11:33:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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