Was the Pres. taken to the cleaners by the Republicans in 2011?
If you read Bob Woodward’s Price of Politics, you can learn the byzantine negotiations that went on between multiple parties in the summer of 2011, attempting to find a Grand Bargain, then a Pretty Big Bargain, then a Meh Bargain, and ending with the Sequestration Bargain.
As is pretty clear, sequestration was suggested by the Obama team as a way to reach some kind of deal. And Republicans eagerly accepted.
For Obama, the theory was that the cuts in defense and discretionary spending would be so onerous that no one would allow them to happen.
As of right now, Monday morning, the cuts are happening.
And many Republicans couldn’t be happier.
For some, the cuts are just what the Big Government Doctor ordered: The only way to control our spending is by cuts, dramatic, semi-across the board cuts (no entitlement cuts in the deal). If it hurts, these Republicans argue, it should. That’s the only way to start to get the budget under control.
But there’s another advantage Republicans see in sequestration: Put the Pres on the hotseat. How? By passing legislation that would give him more discretion on how much and where the cuts would take place.
Meaning any pain we’d feel would come — at least immediately — from where the Pres ordered the cuts.
So the Pres and Republicans have four days to make a deal, to stave off the beginning of sequestration (Key word? ”Beginning.” The dramatic cuts don’t really take place in one fell swoop, no matter what the Pres would like us to believe).
And I have a feeling that it ain’t gonna happen.
On Friday, we’ll awake to the wonderful world of sequestration.
The awful deal too good to take a pass on.