So, the House Democratic caucus — you know, the group that’s about to become the House minority party — approves a (non-binding) resolution not to even hold a vote on the tax deal President Obama struck with Republicans. Which leads me to ask Democrats, and their sympathizers on this blog, a few questions.
1. If this is mere posturing — and Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank suggests that, while he won’t support it, the deal still has the votes to pass if it’s brought up — does your base think more or less of you for standing up to the (Democratic) president, only to cave in the end?
2. If this isn’t mere posturing, and the paychecks of those lower- and middle-income workers — the ones whose interests you claim to be guarding — are suddenly a great deal lighter come January because no tax deal is struck, do you think those workers will appreciate the gesture? (Hint: That gesture is going to look an awful lot like a middle finger.)
3. If Republicans in the House are tasked with crafting a retroactive tax-rates extension when they take over the majority in January, do you think it will look more or less attractive to you?
4. Finally, and maybe most important: If you cut out the legs of your (again, Democratic) president now, right after your (and his) party’s disastrous showing in the midterm elections, how much juice do you expect him (and you) to have after the GOP takes over the House and strengthens its position in the Senate? How well do you think he’ll be able to push your interests then?
Bonus question: When does the widespread derision of Democrats as “obstructionists” and the “Party of No” begin?
– By Kyle Wingfield
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