Where to put the emphasis? On Republican efforts to “avoid a showdown”? Obama’s efforts to “resolve fiscal fights” by calling the “opposition”? Or Dems abandoning “strong opposition” to the “GOP spending bill”?
Can anyone even pretend to be surprised at any of this? Obama being Obama. Republicans being Republicans. Democrats being Democrats. We the People being screwed.
From Reuters: (emphasis added throughout)
Budget crisis eases as Republicans seek to avoid shutdown
Tension over the fiscal crisis eased on Monday as President Barack Obama called more opposition lawmakers to find a way to stop $85 billion in damaging budget cuts and congressional Republicans announced a plan to prevent a government shutdown.
Obama spoke with Republican Senators over the weekend, including Maine Republican Senator Susan Collins and Oklahoma Republican Senator Tom Coburn, “eager to resolve fiscal fights.” He raised the possibilities of “cutting entitlement programs,” including “Medicare, the healthcare program for the elderly and disabled, and Social Security retirement benefits.” In a Monday Cabinet meeting, he said:
‘I will continue to seek out partners on the other side of the aisle so that we can create the kind of balanced approach of spending cuts, revenues, entitlement reform that everybody knows is the right way to do things.’
Comment from Lambert at Corrente:
Oh, ‘everybody’? ‘Everybody’ who is anybody, I suppose.
Now, about the Republicans “seek(ing) to avoid a shutdown,” in the House they
… turned their attention to avoiding a crisis around the next fiscal deadline: the March 27 expiration of funding for government agencies and programs.
A Republican bill announced on Monday would give some relief to the Defense Department, the Veterans Administration and military construction.
Democrats aren’t happy with the lack of similar attention to domestic programs, for which automatic spending cuts would remain.
So, what are the House Democrats doing? Here’s one thing, from The Hill:
Dems back down from strongly opposing GOP spending bill
House Democratic leaders have decided against uniting their party’s rank and file in opposition to a Republican spending bill that would fund the government.
House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) said the GOP’s continuing resolution (CR) both threatens the economy and violates the spending levels agreed to under the 2011 Budget Control Act (BCA). But in an acknowledgment that the Democrats are all but powerless to block the CR on the House floor, Hoyer said leaders would not pressure their troops to oppose it. …
‘We’re not whipping at this point in time,’ Hoyer told reporters in the Capitol. ‘We don’t want to shut down the government.’
When the Duopoly paints itself in a corner, one indication of how the two are different seems to be, rather often, in which one blinks first. Although at times, probably also rather often, it may be less of a “blink” and more of a wink.