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Mitch McConnell Sets The 2012 Narrative

Mitch McConnell Sets The 2012 Narrative

I have praised Mitch McConnell before, when he was fighting an almost impossible battle to hold the line in the Senate on a variety of issues when the Democrats had a filibuster-proof or near filibuster-proof majority.

Now McConnell may have set the narrative for 2012 on the most important issue facing the nation, the national debt. That narrative is that no real deal is possible so long as Obama is President, as reported by The Wall Street Journal:

A “real solution” to U.S. fiscal problems isn’t possible as long as President Barack Obama remains in office, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday, heightening the rhetoric surrounding the debt-ceiling debate.

Mr. McConnell, the Senate’s top Republican, and House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio), both blamed President Obama for the stalemate in the debt-ceiling and deficit-reduction talks, and urged the White House to break the impasse. Negotiations were to resume for a third-straight day Tuesday afternoon.

Mr. McConnell said he had gone into negotiations in good faith over how to formulate a deficit-reduction package to accompany an increase in the statutory borrowing limit….

Mr. McConnell said he concluded after the latest negotiations that the administration had “expressed a fundamental unwillingness” to agree to significant spending cuts.

“But after years of discussions and months of negotiations, I have little question that as long as this president is in the Oval Office, a real solution is unattainable,” Mr. McConnell said in a Senate floor speech.

Update: Did I sing his praises too soon? McConnell has issued a proposal which I don’t fully understand, but which is meeting with much derision. When I understand it better, I’ll comment on it.


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It canot be said better, more clearly, and more succinctly. Mitch McConnell may be the most intelligent, articulate, decent, accomplished, politician in America today. He has managed this while swimming for years in waters infested with sharks, blowfish, minnows, and plankton. MSM worm-fisherman have trolled for him unsuccessfully for years.
Mitch McConnell for President.

16.40 minutes of truth……love it 🙂

The truth hurts and McConnell is speaking the truth. The Democrats have been negligent on the debt issue for more than forty years. Obama has been sitting on his hands on this issue for months. He has recommended and proposed nothing of substance. The entire Senate voted his joke of a budget proposal down 97 to 0. The Harry Reid Democrat controlled Senate has passed no budget for 800 days. They failed to do so even when they had a filibuster-proof majority. It’s their job and they punted. There is a vacuum of adult leadership in the executive branch and the Senate. Now this joke of a President tries to spin his way out of this mess with this transparent posturing as if to say “I’m the adult in the room.” He’s the big buffoon in the room challenged only by the presence of Harry Reid. He’s been voting present for years now as evidenced in one obvious case by his failure to submit (as required by law) a proposal to fix the funding shortfall in Social Security for three successive years. The “adults in the room” are McConnell, Ryan, Cantor, and Boehner.

LukeHandCool | July 12, 2011 at 1:48 pm

Get down which’d yo bad self, Mitch!!

LukeHandCool (who would be happy to translate that as, Good on you, Mitch!!)

I am very glad McConnell finally seems to be getting it. Obama is simply not negotiating in good faith – thank you!

I believe it is important to understand exactly why Obama wants to demonize wealthy people. The truth is that he is envious, resentful and jealous of people of accomplishment. America has grown strong through its history because we admired and gave credit to people who went out into the free enterprise system, took risks, exhibited creativity and initiative, and became successful. We have always admired people of accomplishment whether it was in business, sports, entertainment, science, or any other field.

Now Obama wants to change the paradigm. He would like everyone to forget that we already have a progressive tax system in which the more people make, the greater the percentage of their income they pay in taxes. Obama wants to fire up all of the have-nots and bring them together so that he can build up the constituency of the Democratic Party and increase the size of government as we collect mountains of debt and promulgate unsustainable social Ponzi schemes.

Obama is not a Robin Hood who is taking from people that have amassed fortunes through unearned privilege and birthright. He is simply a shallow person of ineptitude and his actions are motivated by his deficiencies. The more we frustrate him and render him ineffective – the sooner our nation will return to economic health and greatness.

LukeHandCool | July 12, 2011 at 2:07 pm

Slightly off topic Professor, but I was wondering if, seeing as it’s summer, you’re going to feature any surf music before we sadly leave the greatest season of all, summer.

From what I understand, Rhode Island is not land-locked. Surely you spent some summer nights dancing at parties in your pre-blogger youth, doing the “surfer’s stomp” until your date could no longer stand the waves of sweat crashing down upon your salty, sandy, sunburnt face.

LukeHandCool (who would settle for some Don Ho … and who, for the botanical record, goes dormant when the temperature dips below 75).

    William A. Jacobson in reply to LukeHandCool. | July 12, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    I’ll take it under consideration (from LukeHandCool who is getting quite demanding).

    turfmann in reply to LukeHandCool. | July 12, 2011 at 4:22 pm

    Rhode Island is certainly not landlocked, but do we really want to bring up The Cowsills?

      LukeHandCool in reply to turfmann. | July 12, 2011 at 4:59 pm


      See that scar, turfmann? Sometimes I think the Cowsills travelled all the way from Rhode Island to L.A. just so Susie Cowsill could break my 10-year-old heart.

LukeHandCool | July 12, 2011 at 2:27 pm

Sorry, Professor. The summer sun often bring on a euphoric manic-episode. Please don’t ever think I’m being demanding … but simply annoyingly full of unsolicited suggestions. Feel free to ignore them.

LukeHandCool (who has already posted too many comments for one day and, in fear of looking like a brash, loud-mouthed, know-it-all Rutgers economics professor with too much to say, will stay quiet and just read. And who, when his wife said to him, “You’re too much sometimes. Ask the doctor if you are manic-depressive,” responded, “How does a Japanese girl like you know a big English word like that?”

Today Mcconnell said what needed to be said and it did it very eloquently. Tomorrow they may go along with O and raise taxes. I think that the Tea Party has made a difference; otherwise, Boehner probably would have agreed to some kind of underhanded plan devised by the left long before now.

“We’re going to have to cave, sorry.”

I refrained from commenting on McConnell’s comments so far because I just can’t accept anything this guy says at face value. Now the other shoe has dropped:

He wants to give Obama special powers to raise the debt ceiling unilaterally. Typical McConnell. He is NOT a fighter and he certainly is NOT a conservative.

    MaggotAtBroadAndWall in reply to Pasadena Phil. | July 12, 2011 at 4:28 pm

    He’d rather cede Congressional authority to the President to unilaterally raise the debt ceiling, effectively giving Obama a blank check, and in return the Republicans don’t have to vote to raise the debt ceiling? Do I have it right?

    Is McConnell effectively blowing up the Republican Party with this move?

One of my favorite liberal blogs, which is staunchly pro-Hillary, has been saying this since 2007:

“Obama simply cannot be trusted. Obama cannot be trusted on any issue. Obama cannot be trusted by his friends. Obama cannot be trusted by his enemies. Obama cannot be trusted.”

I’m glad some congress critters are catching on.

Ironclad tax increases and vaporware spending cuts. That’s the Democrats’ game and always has been.

I’m still trying to figure the ‘last’ McConnell move; the one where allowing Obama to raise the debt ceiling at his discretion is a plan.
I’m a bit stunned but the ‘plan’ may be to allow the Democrats to run helter-skelter into oblivion spending like the proverbial drunken sailors. Give them the charge card and turn ’em loose.
Come 2012 the voters will decide who the adults are and if they wish to continue on this path to destruction/socialism they cannot say they were not warned.
Just trying to think of all the possibilities here. I’m as confused as the next guy.

I don’t think there’s a chance in hell of the Democrats getting any kind of tax increase passed to pay for their ‘drunken sailor’ binge either. My apologies to sailors. My uncle was one and he loved the profession.

I expect to see tax deductions for mortgages and other small benefits for the middle class to be phased out. It will be spun as holding the line on tax increases in exchange for raising the debt ceiling.

And both sides will claim victory….

DINORightMarie | July 12, 2011 at 4:35 pm

I heard the above, while Rush was on. Then, during Sean Hannity on the radio just a minute ago, I heard the McConnell “Pontius Pilate Act” clip. No one has that video imbed. Michell Malkin, Red State, NRO all have the gist of his proposal. But no video.

My request: would you post that video, as well? I can’t believe that he would say such clear, correct things as he did in this video, then do such a STUPID thing! It would NEVER pass the House. What in the heck was McConnell thinking?!?! Supposedly he is going to “clarify his statements” shortly, because of the immediate uproar. But unless he has totally been misquoted, then it’s over for him.

McConnell is done. Toast. He will be primaried and removed, next election. DeMint will be the Majority leader in 2012, after this unbelievably insane proposal.

Professor back in the Storming the Senate thread
you asked about choices: Post 2008 Election I discovered an obscure Congressional bit of information – The Senate Classes
Mitch is in Class 2 ie 2014; everyone in “Class 1” is up in 2012. Every Rep is up every 2 years including 2012. The DC Talking heads figured 50 tops in November 2010, but RNC could have attempted a sweep like the 1894 at 124 seats:,_1894

Best writeup on 2012 for me was from Maggies Notebook at

What I’ve put up with for a decade before 2008 is the ‘yo-yo-ing” between “D” and “R”. What I really want to avoid is a duplicate of the contentious disaster to the constitution that was the 4-way 1912 Presidential Election and also note

What I’m hoping for is a 1920/1894 election reviewing every candidate, including Senator McConnel at the Primary and General Election phase. Oh and no Third Party – if Taft had won that one the whole Twentieth Century “Hundred Years War” might have been avoided………

BTW where is the “Herman Cain” search tag again? In SPITE of the finest Jon Stewart insults I WOULD DEARLY like to see the complete Federal Tax Code Or Obamacare for that matter reduced to the side of a box of Cereal! In the meantime I’ll satisfy myself re-reading the last 4 pages of

Thaks, Kobe

[…] Lane and Fox Nation (That should make for some interesting reading this evening!)Update: Prof. Jacobson believes McConnell is setting the narrative for 2012 – as long as O is in office zero will get done. google_ad_client = […]

[…] The book should be a very interesting read.Mitch McConnell confuses me. Two days ago, he said no serious debt ceiling deal was possible while Barack Obama remained President. Last evening, he tossed out a deal that pretty much gave all […]