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Shutdown 2013 Tag

It's unclear at this point whether there will be a short-term budget deal, or a government "shutdown." Despite the drama, a shutdown is not really a shut down. Essential services continue. It's more of a scale-back, and the government has a lot of discretion as to what gets scaled back. In a press conference today OMB Director Mick Mulvaney made the point that many agencies have reserve funds that can be used, but weren't used in the 2013 shutdown.

Congress is under another tight funding deadline. Currently, the federal government is only funded until December 11. A spending bill must be passed by Thursday to avoid a government shutdown. Thursday, John Boehner held a vote that passed legislation rebuking President Obama's executive overreach on immigration. H.R. 5759 would've refused President Obama the authority to intervene in the deportation of illegal immigrants. Harry Reid indicated he will not bring the measure to the Senate floor for a vote in his last remaining days as Majority Leader. Republicans are in a precarious situation. Obama has said, through his spokesman, that he will not sign any bill that defunds his quasi-amnesty. But Government shutdowns are ripe with contention and not the way most congressional Republicans want to wrap up 2014, after what happened in October 2013. Boehner has said he'll do everything in his power to avoid a shutdown. Currently, Boenher's plan (or at least the plan made public) is to pass a bill that would fund the federal government for a year with the exception of one agency: The Department of Homeland Security, which oversees immigration. DHS would only be funded until March when Republicans have control of the Senate and are able to pass substantive reform. (Featured image source: YouTube)...

Another conversation I had with myself on Twitter. Last time it was about The Republican Brand.  This time it's about the lunacy of Republicans -- stoked by the media -- panicking over polling last week showing Republicans dropping like a stone into a mountain crevice. Today Pew released its polling, and it found essentially no change in Republican favorability over the past year. Democrats poll better in terms of favorability, but that's been the case for a long time. Republicans actually are in a slightly better position today than a year out from the 2010 Republican landslide, and are rated better in terms of handling the economy and running government. I don't say Pew knows any better than the other pollsters, or vice versa, but that's the point.  Do what's right, and worry about the 2014 polls closer to November 2014.  For God's sake, Republicans, stop acting like bouncing Super Balls based on the latest polling. First some Pew charts:

Pew Party Favorability 10-15-2013 full

Pew Mid Term Advantage 10-15-2013

Pew More Extreme 10-15-2013

Now my conversation with myself on Twitter:

Yesterday. I'm on vacation at the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Thought you'd like this: the Park Service has closed the Wright Brothers Memorial. I took photos from my iPhone this morning. The cars parked out in front are not Park Service cars; they are people who hopped...

Dewey. He returned to Detroit last winter. and he is updating his Win The Future Theater for the shutdown scale-back with Episode 8: Shelter in Place: Cody and Skylar shelter in place in their Seattle condo on Government Shutdown Day 12. They are out of food and Trojans. ...

(Live Twitter embed at bottom of post) AP via WaPo reports:
A crowd of people has converged on the World War II Memorial on the National Mall, pushing through barriers to protest the memorial’s closing under the government shutdown. WTOP Radio ( ) reports Republican Sen. Mike Lee of Utah and Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas were among those who gathered Sunday morning, along with former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin. Cruz says President Barack Obama is using veterans as pawns in the government shutdown. The memorial has become a symbol of the bitter fight between Democrats and Republicans over who is at fault since the shutdown began. On Sunday morning, a protest by truckers converged with a veterans march at the World War II Memorial. Participants cut the links between metal barriers at the National Park Service property and pushed them aside.
Photo stream here

When it comes to, I've always wondered if they really believe all their outlandish accusations of Tea Party and Republican racism, or it's just the niche they've carved out and click bait.  Look at me, I'm not, I'm Whether it's David Sirota's rants about hoping the Boston Bombers were White Americans, Salon energizing its White Privilege Branding over the Zimmerman trial, or Joan Walsh writing that the "shutdown" (more like a scale back) is the culmination of 50 years of GOP race-baiting, do they actually believe what they write? When it comes to the "shutdown" Salon has caught a Confederate fever, and the only prescription, is more Confederate. Salon has several lead articles in recent days arguing that the Tea Party in general and the "shutdown" in particular are the fulfillment White racist Confederate dreams. By, um, Rafael Edward Cruz?  They never quite address that problem in their argument. Salon is not alone in raising the alleged rise of the Confederacy to demonize the Tea Party, but Salon has taken it to an obsessive level, once again. This would all be laughable, if it weren't so poisonous to the national political dialogue, and if so many liberals didn't actually believe this nonsense and treat it as an absolute truth (just read the comments there). (click each image for link to article, or not): Tea Party Avenging surrender of the South GOP confederate fantasies

Who could have seen this coming? Senate Republicans undercut the House proposal for a 6 week debt ceiling extension by proposing a longer extension: Senate Republicans Look To Jam Boehner Obama sided with the Senate Republicans, rejecting a short term extension.  Via Keith Koffler, Obama Reverses, Opposes Short-Term Debt Ceiling Hike:
Perhaps sensing Republican weakness, President Obama reversed himself and is pushing back against short-term debt ceiling hike, stressing in his weekly address released this morning what a bad idea it would be.
It wouldn’t be wise, as some suggest, to just kick the debt ceiling can down the road for a couple months, and flirt with a first-ever intentional default right in the middle of the holiday shopping season.
After the GOP was offfered earlier this week what I described as a cave-in by Obama – a willingness to accept a short term debt ceiling increase while negotiations Obama has previously rejected kicked in – Republicans failed to act, dithering for days and failing to forge a unified position between their House and Senate caucuses. Instead, sloppy Republican leadership allowed competing proposals to emerge from the House and Senate, with a Senate plan that would extend government financing for six months and raise the debt ceiling through January 2014. House Republicans sought to raise the debt limit until the week before Thanksgiving. As any general knows, when your opposition is divided, you win. Obama acted smartly to abet the divisions among Republicans by inviting them separately to the White House. At his meeting with GOP senators, Republicans were reduced to asking Obama what was in the House plan. What a joke. Republicans should have gotten their act together and insisted on a meeting between House and Senate GOP leaders and the president. This would have made sense unless, of course, House Speaker John Boehner was never serious about the House position to begin with . . .
Paul Ryan recognizes that the Senate Republicans undercut the House: You know what I say? Primary them. Update: It's not as if undermining the House even got Senate Republicans anything:

A conversation I had with myself on Twitter this morning. Just because I could. (added) Be sure to read Anne's study on how embarrassed Republicans were of the Republican Brand long before the current "shutdown," New study sheds light on why Republicans won’t call themselves Republican. Also available on Storify.

We have noted before the extreme eliminationist rhetoric directed at Republicans and the Tea Party by the most senior Democratic politicians, who portray the House's exercise of its constitutional power of the purse as terrorism. That rhetoric has also moved into mainstream liberal publications. What was once expected only of DailyKos or crazy fringe left-wing websites, now is mainstream liberal media. Here's a partial screenshot (full here) of a Google search this morning for "Republican extortion" -- note the mainstream liberal publication that show up on the first page parroting Obama's rhetoric: Google News Search Republican Extortion 10-10-2013 915 am - partial But The Atlantic outdid just about everyone with this image on its story by Philip Bump, How Obama Can Deal with the Irate Republican Army (via Ed Driscoll h/t Instapundit): Boehner Arrest The Atlantic Smitty had it right: As startling as the image may seem coming from a mainstream publication, consider that the source of the image was a photo of an Irish Republican Army terrorist, Colin Duffy, who was charged with the killing of British soldiers (he later was acquitted): HuffPo AP Colin Duffy Arrest Notice the photo of Colin Duffy is the exact same photo The Atlantic used as the source for the photoshop. I'm sure the author and editors at The Atlantic knew exactly what they were doing, even if most of the readers didn't pick up on the Boehner being equated to a specific accused murderer.  Bump made sure to invoke the Irish Republican Army in the text of the post:

are-you-talking-to-me So which will it be: catastrophe or no? And if it's catastrophe, how soon will that happen? People on the left are ramping up the fear, and people on the right trying to minimize it, both for obvious tactical purposes of their own. But failure to raise the debt ceiling is uncharted territory, and the best opinions are just guesses---although if it fails to be raised by the October 17 deadline, I guess we'll find out whose prognostications were right and whose wrong. Even that will not be completely clear, though, because predictions can function as a self-fulfilling prophecy, and fear is contagious. One thing that is clear is that Paul Ryan is correct when he writes in the WSJ:
The president says he "will not negotiate" on the debt ceiling. He claims that such negotiations would be unprecedented. But many presidents have negotiated on the debt ceiling—including him.
Obama would like the public to think he can't negotiate on this and that to do so would be unheard of. But what is actually going on here is that past presidents who have had to deal with divided government (which is what Obama faces; the House is in Republican hands right now) have always known that in such a situation they must negotiate. Whichever party they have been affiliated with, and whether you think they were good presidents or bad ones, they have kept faith with the basic gentleman's/woman's agreement on which our government has always run, and that is that if the other side was duly elected to be in control of another branch of government, that group has some legitimate power and must be negotiated with. Obama is different.