Friday, December 07, 2007

QOTD (Waldmann vs. Worthless Democratic Strategists Edition)

by Tom Bozzo

Robert Waldmann, who clearly would be a higher-valued recipient of the money paid to Democratic "strategists":
I do not understand why the Democrats didn't make the Republicans actually filibuster this one. Delaying the AMT patch and the mailing out of refunds to protect the interests of a small number of hedge fund managers and private equity partners can't be popular can it ? The Democrats seem to have just decided that they will be blamed if the Republicans block them from doing what the public wants. Given the rules of the Senate, if the majority makes it clear that it is willing to cave to get things done on time, the minority can become more powerful than the majority. I really don't see why Reid caved so quickly on this one. A few days of denouncing the Republicans for blocking the AMT patch to serve the super rich who pay 15% of their income in taxes would have made the claim that "we have tried every alternative possible," a lot more convincing.

Given who pays the Republicans' bills, they may have been operating a little bit short of political suicide, but they were clearly willing to spin the barrel for some Russian Roulette. Why the eagerness to snatch the guns out of their hands?

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I don't get it either. 'Filibuster' is not a magic charm that can be uttered and automagically take a bill off the table; it's an activity. Make 'em talk - if not every time, then pretty damn close. Make it clear to folks who don't follow this stuff just who is obstructing, what they are obstructing, and how.
An additional curiosity is that in this case, unlike with war-related votes, the 'keep Lieberman notionally in the fold' motive doesn't apply; he voted for cloture.

Apparently Schumer is signaling that the Democrats intend to hammer the Republicans for obstructing popular causes in the election season. They'd better.
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