Archive for July 20th, 2011

by lizard

Rachel Maddow’s piece on the debt ceiling showdown tonight was very interesting, because it again hinted at the last ditch effort of a constitutional end-around theoretically possible for Obama to pull off if the Tea Party persists in holding the house hostage.

If Obama wants some advice from the guy he’s doing a bad job of emulating with his economic team (or who’s left, considering how many already jumped ship), he should just go ahead and do it:

Former President Bill Clinton said Monday he wouldn’t hesitate to raise the debt ceiling without congressional approval–a fraught political course that President Obama has been reluctant to follow as he seeks to broker a deal on spending with Republican leaders.

Clinton told The National Memo he would invoke the constitutional option “without hesitation, and force the courts to stop [him]” if Congress and the White House fail to reach an agreement to raise the debt ceiling by the Aug. 2 deadline when the U.S. Treasury says the government will begin to default on its debts.

Who knows how this whole thing will play out. Maddow mentioned that markets may not wait for the “self-imposed” date of August 2nd to reek havoc.

How ironic would it be if Obama was “forced” to expand the power of his office because of alleged small government extremists who have successfully snatched control from the near-extinct species of sensible Republicans?

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By JC

If you’ve been paying attention to all the hoopla, you’ve heard by now that the House passed a draconian bill to address the looming crisis over the debt ceiling. I’m not going to go into details. Pogie put up a nice summation of what is going on over at ID, and I’ve got some comments about what’s going on there.

As part of the discussion over there, Steve W. mentions that there will be a protest at Rep. Rehberg’s Missoula office at high noon on this friday in front of Rehberg’s office at 301 E. Broadway.

While showing solidarity against Rehberg’s vote is a good thing, I still feel that everybody left of center should be aware that part of the right wing strategy here is to suck democrats into some kind of vote against Medicare and/or Social Security and Medicaid so as to blunt the effects of them having gone on record as wanting to privatize Medicare with their budget vote in the spring.

Republicans would love nothing better than to be able to turn the tables on dem candidates by showing them to have voted against Medicare, S.S. and/or Medicaid on the debt ceiling vote.

And of course, we have no way of knowing what will be in the final debt ceiling bill, and how our two dem senators will vote. Which is why I’d like to suggest that folks turn out in droves to the protest at Rehberg’s office and carry signs telling Baucus and Tester to keep their hands off of Medicare, S.S. and Medicaid cuts.

For those who want a bit more meta on the debt ceiling story from the left, George Ochenski has a great article “Dear Democrats” over at the Missoula Indy. And he puts my sentiments very clearly:

“When I hear Obama say Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid are all part of what might have to be chopped in his secret deal-making with Republican leaders, deep resentment wells up in me. And I am not alone.

…there are a handful of Democrats, including former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, who say they will never renege on Social Security. But it’s a very tough thing for Democrats who want to keep faith with the party’s working-class base when their President is so obviously willing to give in to outrageous Republican demands…

So here’s the simple message to Democrats: We are watching and we are fed up with you selling us out. Your choice at this juncture is equally simple: Listen up—or lose.”

I’ve appended a version of the email alert that went out in Missoula today about the rally after the jump.
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