Yesterday, after reading about the split between Lindsey Graham and Jim DeMint on the tax cut deal, I Tweeted this:
So I see Jim DeMint is siding with the most liberal Democrats on the tax cut deal. No surprise there: Extremes are extremes…
Today, I get this release from Jim Clyburn:
WASHINGTON, DC – House Majority Whip James E. Clyburn (D-SC) released the following statement on the vote before the House on Obama’s tax cut package.
“While I am pleased that the tax package approved by the House tonight extends important tax cuts to middle-income families and unemployment insurance for millions of Americans, adding $25 billion to the deficit to give a major tax benefit to the estates of the richest 6,600 families in America made it impossible for me to vote for the final package. This measure does not create a single job or stimulate the economy in any way.
‘I hope that as we move forward and our economy continues to recover, we will restore some fairness to the tax code and reduce the burden we are putting on future generations.”
As I said…
Lots of people go through life thinking of Republicans as “the other side” if they are Democrats, and vice versa. Me, I tend to think of the ideological True Believers as the “other side,” the folks with whom I tend to have a knee-jerk disagreement.
The fact that DeMint and Clyburn are both against this deal that President Obama made with (some) Republicans makes me predisposed, on a gut level, to like it.
Of course, that is in some ways irrational, akin to a partisan response. Only with me, I’m being reflexively, emotionally UnPartisan. There is much to dislike in this deal. Such as what? Well, take a look at the national debt. How am I supposed to feel great about a “compromise” that means MORE spending and LESS tax revenue (unless, of course, it has a stimulative effect on the economy and leads to MORE revenue, which I sincerely doubt at this point, since we’re mainly talking about simply continuing current practices)? Not that I’m against continuing unemployment benefits, or against continuing the tax cuts (and I truly could not care less that rich people also get the tax cuts — this obsession some people have with what other people “get” is most unseemly). It’s just the sum total effect that concerns me. (To paraphrase something Tom Friedman famously said about George W. Bush, Just because the Tea Party believes it doesn’t mean that it’s not true. The “it” here being the idea that ever-deeper deficit spending is something to worry about.)
But when you have the pragmatic Obama on one side of an issue, and DeMint and Clyburn locking arms on the other side, my gut pushes me to go with Obama. It’s just a little quirk I have.