The bombshell CBO report and why Obama should be worried

posted at 12:05 pm on February 2, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

Today, Politico’s Jim VandeHei reports that economic indicators should have Barack Obama worried about his re-election prospects, not more sanguine.  VandeHei relies heavily on this week’s economic and deficit projections from the CBO, but perhaps not heavily enough:

A new CBO report grabbed lots of headlines for projecting the deficit will top $1 trillion this year — making Obama the first president ever to pile up $1 trillion or more every year in office. That’s not great politics. But it’s not even the worst news contained in the CBO report. The unemployment number is.

The CBO projects unemployment will rise, hitting 8.8 percent in the third quarter of the year, the heart of the campaign. That’s terrible politics. Obama advisers have told us repeatedly on background that if unemployment is above 8.5 percent in the final months of the campaign, it will be extremely hard, if not impossible, to win. The advisers say independents will not return to Obama if it looks like economic growth is anemic and uncertain and it looks like his policies did little, if anything, to create new jobs under his watch.

Economists seem divided on the question of whether robust enough economic and job growth can happen in time for Obama to benefit. Some see signs of possibility in holiday sales and consumer spending in some parts of the country. Others see more of the same: a slow slog back. The CBO sees 2.2 percent growth in the quarter ending in September, essentially the same sluggish pace of a year earlier.

All of this is true — and more.  Barack Obama will claim that the same report shows America entering a more rapid pace of economic growth after 2013, with deficits falling to $200 billion and 1.5% of GDP, which is what the CBO report claims … under the assumption that current policies will remain in place.  I walked through those scenarios for The Fiscal Times in my column today, and explained the fantasy that would involve:

The report does project that annual budget deficits will “decline markedly” in the next ten years after this budget cycle, to as little as $200 billion a year and 1.5 percent of GDP, both very manageable levels of deficit spending. How will this miracle occur?  According to current law, which is the only guide that the CBO can use, the Bush-era tax rates will expire across the board, and the Alternative Minimum Tax will not be restrained from reaching far into the middle class.  The latter change will increase the number of American households subject to the AMT from four million in tax year 2011 to thirty million in tax year 2012. If readers can imagine any Congress subjecting middle-class voters to that kind of a tax shock in a single year, then this will sound like very good news indeed. Otherwise, this is an exercise in irony.

That gives one measure of just how seriously Washington takes deficit control. Here’s another: the automatic cuts passed in last year’s Budget Control Act would only deduct $105 billion from the deficit in 2015, while keeping the AMT and rate changes would add $395 billion to the federal government’s coffers.  By 2020, the BCA’s budget cuts only reduce the annual deficit by $137 billion, while the extra taxes add $685 billion to the kitty.  However, if Congress indexes the AMT as expected and extends the 2001/3 tax rates, the deficit picture looks bleak indeed.  It would get only as low as $664 billion in 2015 before nearing a trillion dollars again in 2020, and exceeding it by 2022, even with the minimal cuts in place.

What happens to the economy if Congress allows these massive tax increases to take place?  The CBO expects the economy to grow at a 2.0 percent rate in 2012, about the same stagnation rate we have seen for the past two years.  In 2013, though, with the capital sucked out of the market, the economy will slow even further to 1.1 percent, and for the economy to remain below its potential – until 2018.  Taxpayers and investors will lose ground on taxes and economic opportunity while Washington does nothing to curb spending – the real driver of these deficits.

The rest of the column reviews the track record of the Republican candidates to determine which might do best at accomplishing actual spending reductions in the next four years, so be sure to read it all.  However, the big story from the CBO is just how badly the taxpayer-contribution approach to deficit control would hammer the middle class — from both ends.  Economic growth at stagnation levels means fewer jobs, continued slow demand for housing and a resulting further decline in home values, and an erosion of retirement options.  Heavy taxation, especially through the EMT, means a lot less disposable income and ability to save and spend.  If the middle class thought they were getting squeezed before this, they won’t have seen anything yet.

This is the result of Obamanomics, the result of out-of-control spending from both parties, and the reason that actual spending cuts — not just a reduction in the rate of spending growth — needs to be the central economic argument in this year’s election.  Republicans need to start charting these numbers in digestible form now and start hammering them all the way to the general election no matter who wins the nomination, and activists have to focus on Senate and House races more than ever.


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Ladies and gentlemen: why we should rejoice no matter who the nominee is, this fool’s going down.

The War Planner on February 2, 2012 at 12:06 PM

The War Planner on February 2, 2012 at 12:06 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

Green Shoots!

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

Lets see how the media is reporting any of this come August before saying obozo should worry. Bogus numbers come out to great fanfare all the time, only to be readjusted quitely a few months later.

Flange on February 2, 2012 at 12:09 PM

If Obama gets reelected I am going to worry about the sanity of this country.

Smedley on February 2, 2012 at 12:09 PM

This is the result of Obamanomics, the result of out-of-control spending from both parties, and the reason that actual spending cuts — not just a reduction in the rate of spending growth — needs to be the central economic argument in this year’s election.

Good thing Romney has a history of cutting government spending.

Oh. Wait.

Doh.

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:09 PM

America is back!” -Barack H. Obama, SOTU Address.

profitsbeard on February 2, 2012 at 12:09 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

Well, Romney probably won’t nominate Eric Holder for a vacant Supreme Court seat.

Betenoire on February 2, 2012 at 12:10 PM

According to current law, which is the only guide that the CBO can use, the Bush-era tax rates will expire across the board, and the Alternative Minimum Tax will not be restrained from reaching far into the middle class.

I mentioned this the other day. Yes, the CBO does have to score what’s put in front of them, but anyone who thinks the Bush tax cuts will expire across the board is on crack. Obama might be crazy enough to let them expire(it would be after the election, so what does he care?), but his party will never allow it to happen.

Doughboy on February 2, 2012 at 12:10 PM

What happens to the economy if Congress allows these massive tax increases to take place?

If those things happen, its a moot point what happens to the economy. There just won’t be one, other than Bartertowns and Obamavilles all over the place.

Bust a deal, face the wheel.

BobMbx on February 2, 2012 at 12:10 PM

We are so screwed.

search4truth on February 2, 2012 at 12:11 PM

But.. but Joe said it was “the summer of recovery”

acyl72 on February 2, 2012 at 12:11 PM

I repeat: Why should he worry? He can just lie about everything, as he always has. The media will continue to cover for him and repeat the lies. The current numbers are fake, anyway – it doesn’t take much to fake them even more in his favor.

The Rogue Tomato on February 2, 2012 at 12:11 PM

The CBO is obviously racist.

They didn’t even mention this was all Bush’s fault.

acyl72 on February 2, 2012 at 12:11 PM

Which is why PBHO won’t talk about the economy and the media jackals will protect him at the debates. Expect a lot of questions about Bin Laden being dead and the personal life of the the GOP nominee.

Bishop on February 2, 2012 at 12:12 PM

The Dems should have sent Obama back to Chicago and run another candidate because anybody can beat Romney. However, according to George Soros, Romney is not that different than Obama, so the Dems are probably fine with either one. Only America loses.

lea on February 2, 2012 at 12:12 PM

The case for Newt? Also, I have an idea. If we can scrape up a million bucks, we can bid on Senator Obama’s used gas guzzler and have him drive it out of Washington.

bloggless on February 2, 2012 at 12:12 PM

Well somehow bho will see to it Bush gets the blame? bho never takes the blame for anything.
L

letget on February 2, 2012 at 12:12 PM

If Obama gets reelected I am going to worry about the sanity of this country.

Smedley on February 2, 2012 at 12:09 PM

This country kept re-electing FDR.

yhxqqsn on February 2, 2012 at 12:13 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

Wellllll-He’s nottttttt-Obamaaaaaaa

gerrym51 on February 2, 2012 at 12:14 PM

but anyone who thinks the Bush tax cuts will expire across the board is on crack.

Lets put this in perspective:

but anyone who thinks we’ll be forced by the government to enter into a private contract is on crack.

It really is happening, whether you smoke crack or not.

BobMbx on February 2, 2012 at 12:14 PM

Ladies and gentlemen: why we should rejoice no matter who the nominee is, this fool’s going down.

C’mon, if we can’t raise a drink to that here on Hot Air, what CAN we agree on?

Esoteric on February 2, 2012 at 12:14 PM

Good thing Romney has a history of cutting government spending.

Oh. Wait.

Doh.

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:09 PM

Even the Romney/Mormon hater angryed admitted such.

He (Romney) cut funding back to $600K.

angryed on January 31, 2012 at 6:46 PM

Just sayin.

Gunlock Bill on February 2, 2012 at 12:16 PM

President Romney.

Bammy and Mammy with their bags packed, taking a DC cab to the airport on January 20, 2013.

Good times.

Keep your eye on the ball.

NoDonkey on February 2, 2012 at 12:16 PM

Well, Romney probably won’t nominate Eric Holder for a vacant Supreme Court seat.

Betenoire on February 2, 2012 at 12:10 PM

There is that.

Gunlock Bill on February 2, 2012 at 12:17 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

Well, Romney probably won’t nominate Eric Holder for a vacant Supreme Court seat.

Betenoire on February 2, 2012 at 12:10 PM

Well, if one follows the “logic” of some of the RDS folks here on Hot Gas, Romney would do just that.

As Governor, Romney had to deal with a 9-person panel who approved or vetoed his Judicial nominations. 8 of them were Democrats.

His final record showed that 40% of those he nominated were Democrats, 35% Independents, and 25% Republicans. But considering what he was up against, that’s a pretty balanced list.

Del Dolemonte on February 2, 2012 at 12:19 PM

You have to hand it to Ed. He sure knows how to scare all the liberal trolls away.

Kataklysmic on February 2, 2012 at 12:20 PM

No reason to worry. The unemployement rate will be “reported” as less than 8.5% by the election. I’m sure the reported numbers have already been determined by O’s re-electon committee.

E. Kiefaber on February 2, 2012 at 12:20 PM

According to current law, which is the only guide that the CBO can use, the Bush-era tax rates will expire across the board, and the Alternative Minimum Tax will not be restrained from reaching far into the middle class. The latter change will increase the number of American households subject to the AMT from four million in tax year 2011 to thirty million in tax year 2012.

So Obummer can blame Bush for not closing the deficit, although he signed a bill in late 2010 extending the Bush tax cuts?

The Bush tax cuts were passed in 2003–funny that we didn’t have any trillion-dollar deficits, or even half-trillion-dollar deficits, until 2009, when Obama came to town!

Steve Z on February 2, 2012 at 12:20 PM

Barry would indeed be very worried about the CBO report on our incredibly lousy economic condition and future propects — if he thought that the public would ever actually hear about it. But Barry’s not worried at all, because he knows the MSM, as always, has his back.

AZCoyote on February 2, 2012 at 12:21 PM

The rest of the column reviews the track record of the Republican candidates to determine which might do best at accomplishing actual spending reductions in the next four years

Stop, please stop, you’re killin me

Bat Chain Puller on February 2, 2012 at 12:22 PM

and the Alternative Minimum Buffet Tax will not be restrained from reaching far into the middle class.

Fixed, for morons who get their tax policy knowledge from photo ops.

MNHawk on February 2, 2012 at 12:22 PM

I would not put it past obama to massage or re-write the employment numbers enough that it dips below 8 in october.

Luckily for the country, reality may trump obama.

From here:
http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2012/01/gdp-on-recession-track-real-gdp-28.html

“the latest YoY real GDP, at 1.6% is up from last quarter’s 1.5% (to two decimal points it’s 1.56% versus 1.46% for Q3). At 1.6% the YoY number is below the level at the onset of all the recessions since quarterly GDP was first calculated — with one exception: The six-month recession in 1980 started in a quarter with lower YoY GDP (at two decimal places it was 1.42% versus today’s 1.56%). And only on one occasion (Q1 2007) has YoY GDP dropped below 1.6% without a recession starting in the same quarter. In that case the recession began three quarters later in December 2007.

In contrast to popular belief, recessions typically start with GDP in positive territory. As you can see, Real GDP vs. a year ago is +1.6% and that is consistent with a recession track.

It is highly likely Bernanke was aware in advance that a full 1.9 percentages points of that 2.8% rise in GDP was inventory replenishment when he pledged on Wednesday to “Hold Rates near Zero “At Least” through Late 2014″ and opened the door for another round of Quantitative easing as well.”

>>what this means is unless more quantative easing comes, and even if it does; it is highly likely a recssion starts between now and december.

if it starts before october, which should happen as the US is inlfated more on artificial growth than it ever was in 2008; the US will be shedding more jobs and the stock market will be falling on election day and the one thing people will be doing is voting against 4 more years of obama.

cougar on February 2, 2012 at 12:23 PM

I remember a story about how all the “W” keys were removed from WH computer keyboards back in 2001. I wonder what pettiness we can expect this time around. I’m guessing it won’t be pretty…

Kraken on February 2, 2012 at 12:23 PM

“This is the result of Obamanomics, the result of out-of-control spending from both parties, and the reason that actual spending cuts — not just a reduction in the rate of spending growth — needs to be the central economic argument in this year’s election.”

But Newt had three wives and is an insider and worked for Freddy Mac and had ethic issues and is mean and fat and wants to go to the moon and has a funny name and…

/Mittbots

Seven Percent Solution on February 2, 2012 at 12:24 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

He’s eligible for the job and actually loves this nation. Mittens would still suck but he’s not even in the same ballpark as the Indonesian Imbecile.

We could impeach Mittens pretty easily if he really got out of line.

ThePrimordialOrderedPair on February 2, 2012 at 12:25 PM


Bammy and Mammy with their bags packed, taking a DC cab to the airport on January 20, 2013.

Leaving a trail of scorched earth behind them. If he loses, and given the stupidity the put him in office in the first place I would not be surprised if he wins, I predict his last two months in office will see some truly frightening things happening in America.

clippermiami on February 2, 2012 at 12:25 PM

I am old enough to remember that the Carter people were insistent that they could “frame” the 1980 election as a “choice between 2 futures,” the same nonsense that the Obama people are peddling, day after day, TV show after TV show.

It won’t work and it ain’t gonna sell. No matter how much Obama has the MSM in his pocket, it won’t matter: the reality of people’s lives will dominate the election, and Obama will be given a pink slip from the American people.

matthew8787 on February 2, 2012 at 12:26 PM

I predict his last two months in office will see some truly frightening things happening in America.

clippermiami on February 2, 2012 at 12:25 PM

Mitch better not agree to ANY sort of recess after the vote.

Kraken on February 2, 2012 at 12:27 PM

Clearly the CBO is…..wait for it…
.
.
.
You know what’s coming…
.
.
.
Almost there…
.
.
.
Just about…
.
.
.
RACIST!!!!111!!!!eleventy

jukin3 on February 2, 2012 at 12:27 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

..it is not polite to mock the afflicted. I suffer from terminal ABO; that’s my prime animus.

The War Planner on February 2, 2012 at 12:28 PM

“President Obowma is just a little bit over his head…

… other than that, he is pretty nice guy!” – Mitt Romney

Mittens campaign strategy…

/

Seven Percent Solution on February 2, 2012 at 12:28 PM

Thought I’d like to remind everyone that Mitt pledging to support increases in the minimum wage will only kill unemployment even further, and Rush is currently delivering an epic monologue on this very topic.

Aizen on February 2, 2012 at 12:29 PM

We still have a little over eight months to go, so anything can happen in that time. But I just can’t imagine Obama changing course substantially, despite all his glowy speeches, as I believe he is both incapable of change, and is under the thumb of the Valerie Jarrett machine.

RebeccaH on February 2, 2012 at 12:30 PM

This is more than incompetence. This is criminal and should be treated as such. Impeach this SOB now.

Shiny_Tiara on February 2, 2012 at 12:31 PM

(Reuters) – Gvernment spending for Medicare, Medicaid and other healthcare programs will more than double over the next decade to $1.8 trillion, or 7.3 percent of the country’s total economic output, congressional researchers said on Tuesday.

In its annual budget and economic outlook, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office said that even under its most conservative projections, healthcare spending would rise by 8 percent a year from 2012 to 2022, mainly as a result of an aging U.S. population and rising treatment costs. It will continue to be a key driver of the U.S. budget deficit.

Medical entitlements will double in 10 years. That’s the projection but we all know the reality, economic growth will undershoot and entitlement growth will overshoot. We are being killed by our debt now, so what happens when we double entitlements? It’s the end. This is hard proof that if we do not fundamentally change Washington then it all falls down within 10 years. Do you really think the GOP is going to take care of this? Consider this your wake up call. You’ve got at most a decade to prepare.

DFCtomm on February 2, 2012 at 12:33 PM

clippermiami on February 2, 2012 at 12:25 PM

I don’t.

That would take effort.

Not like he really likes the job anyway.

He’ll begin doing what he’s actually good at.

Jetting around to 5 star resorts, making speeches, getting six-figures each night, badmouthing America.

NoDonkey on February 2, 2012 at 12:33 PM

When Obama claims that economic growth should accelerate after 2013, we all need to chant,

“Nope. Too long. We can’t wait!”

matthew8787 on February 2, 2012 at 12:33 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

For one, Paul Ryan took Mitt’s plan to address entitlement reform and worked with Wyden to write a bipartisan plan that could be passed into law. Have you seen Obama work with anyone (Dem or Republican) to come up with a credible plan to address entitlement reform?

msmveritas on February 2, 2012 at 12:34 PM

But.. but Joe said it was “the summer of recovery”

acyl72 on February 2, 2012 at 12:11 PM

this’ll be Summer of Recovery v.3.0 this year, won’t it???

ted c on February 2, 2012 at 12:34 PM

It’s a trap!!!

If and when that Q3 GDP gets revised up – even .001% – that will be the narrative “Obama is outpacing the CBO estimates” or IF unemployment unexpectedly goes down .1%… yup you guessed it.

If the blatant fraud and lying from the CBO concerning Obamacare wasnt an indicator of where their bread is buttered… good luck with that.

Reps love stats, Dems love narratives – and in todays America – narratives win.

Odie1941 on February 2, 2012 at 12:35 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

Enough already with the “Mitt is the same as Obama” stuff. None of the remaining Candidates are anything like Obama.Get real here..

sandee on February 2, 2012 at 12:36 PM

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

..but if you’re fine with ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY no repeal of ObamaCare (versus the distinct possibility of it getting 86′ed) and ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY having the SCOTUS stacked with two or three more uber-liberal justices, then please sign on for four more years of golf-playing, vacations, strangling bis regulations, union favortism, Eric Holder, the lobster-sucking, $500-sneaker-wearing WIDE LOAD FLOTUS, separate AFOne flights for B. O., M. O,. and BO., date nights on our nickel, and..and..

..I could go on, but you get the idea.

The War Planner on February 2, 2012 at 12:37 PM

And even if the unemployment rate surpasses 9%, who’s to say what the number released for public consumption will be at the time? It could still be publicized as “8.3%” and then “readjusted upward” retroactively a couple of months later with much less fanfare.

Right Mover on February 2, 2012 at 12:38 PM

5 bucks and a CBO report will almost buy you a bad haircut.

But yeah- unemployment has to go up sharply before it starts going down for good. The record amounts of people left out of the employable numbers will start looking for work again, driving up the jobless rate

Chuck Schick on February 2, 2012 at 12:40 PM

Heavy taxation, especially through the EMT, means a lot less disposable income and ability to save and spend.

EMT? Is that the initialism for Obama’s new Emergency Michelle Tax? You prefaced it by referring to heavy taxation.

BuckeyeSam on February 2, 2012 at 12:40 PM

Mittens campaign strategy…

/

Seven Percent Solution on February 2, 2012 at 12:28 PM

..with the greatest of respect, how would you handle running against the FIRST BLACK PRESIDENT without having all of the bleeding heart MSM come out and paint you as a vicious, sheet-wearing racist.

As such, expect them to roast him for virtually anything he says remotely bad about their beloved savior.

The War Planner on February 2, 2012 at 12:41 PM

Makes you wonder how long the liberal media will give a Republican President time to turn things around or if they will let them blame the previous administration as the current one has done.

Wagthatdog on February 2, 2012 at 12:42 PM

Well, Romney probably won’t nominate Eric Holder for a vacant Supreme Court seat.

Betenoire on February 2, 2012 at 12:10 PM

“Governor Mitt Romney, who touts his conservative credentials to out-of-state Republicans, has passed over GOP lawyers for three-quarters (75%) of the 36 judicial vacancies he has faced, instead tapping registered Democrats or independents – including two gay lawyers who have supported expanded same-sex rights.”

..and ya, it’s Massachusetts, but with politicians what do you have besides their record? Their word? rotfl

ElectricPhase on February 2, 2012 at 12:42 PM

Gold, silver, guns, ammo and food…need i say more?

PatriotRider on February 2, 2012 at 12:42 PM

Gold, silver, guns, ammo and food…need i say more?

PatriotRider on February 2, 2012 at 12:42 PM

And beer. Lots of beer.

BacaDog on February 2, 2012 at 12:44 PM

When the elite start bugging out to New Zealand, and buy 2,600 acre working farms, you know somethings afoot…

PatriotRider on February 2, 2012 at 12:44 PM

Ladies and gentlemen: why we should rejoice no matter who the nominee is, this fool’s going down.

The War Planner on February 2, 2012 at 12:06 PM

I hope so, I hope so, I hope so!
WP-I don’t trust the media to not go out of their way to help him…nor do I trust the attention spans of 1/2 of Americans.
I think of these “Man on the Street” interviews…and hold my head!

KOOLAID2 on February 2, 2012 at 12:45 PM

Those tax increases go thru, Barry and the rest of the politicians in Washington will all be looking for a new job.

GarandFan on February 2, 2012 at 12:46 PM

Romney is nothing like Obama at all and those of you comparing the two are way off base. Romney earned what he has and never gained a position based on race or affirmative action. Romney has a solid sucessful business background where a huge net gain of jobs and stronger companies were created.

You fix the financial problems within the US government and most other problems will improve right along with it. Whoever in the GOP wins the Presidency this fall will have a GOP-controlled Congess and possibly the Senate as well or at least a very close margin of control. Checks and balances will once again be honored by the Executive branch…unlike we’ve seen the past few years.

We might not have everyone’s ‘perfect’ candidate but ANYONE is better than who is in control now.

BO, Holder, Geitner, Jarrett and Michelle should be sent home in January….and make them fly Southwest!!

JetBlast on February 2, 2012 at 12:47 PM

Read the CBO report and look at the graphs. Want to get out of the hole? It paints a pretty. Lear picture of how to do it.

Boomer_Sooner on February 2, 2012 at 12:47 PM

“. Lear” should be read “clear”.

Boomer_Sooner on February 2, 2012 at 12:48 PM

Gold, silver, guns, ammo and food…need i say more?

PatriotRider on February 2, 2012 at 12:42 PM

..got my Lee reloading press working overtime — .30-06 and .223 for a start. The 9mm dies are in the mail.

The War Planner on February 2, 2012 at 12:52 PM

Okay — serious question. This seems like a slam dunk to us. But when Obama inevitably lies and twists these numbers to show how he IS reducing the deficit, and how he IS getting jobs created, and if it weren’t for him things would be a gazillion times worse — how do we fight back to that?

I have a lot of unapologetic liberal friends and they believe every word that comes out of his mouth. Sometimes I don’t know how to get through to, otherwise logical people, who are just under the man’s spell. They want to believe him SO badly, they just ignore the mountain of evidence right before their faces.

Violina23 on February 2, 2012 at 12:54 PM

Reps love stats, Dems love narratives – and in todays America – narratives win.

Odie1941 on February 2, 2012 at 12:35 PM

You understand of course that this explains Obama low approval ratings ?

Oh wait…no you didn’t ….
Bwahahahahahahahahahahahah

DevilsPrinciple on February 2, 2012 at 12:55 PM

Our nation has lost its sanity. In a sane version of our nation, no candidate who did not have a sensible plan for cutting more than $1 trillion annually from our government’s budget would even be considered a plausible candidate for President.

Then again, in any sane version of our nation, we would never have run a $1 trillion deficit in the first place. And Barack Obama would never have come within 8 light years of the White House.

philwynk on February 2, 2012 at 12:56 PM

Where do I pick up my kosher meal?

bloggless on February 2, 2012 at 12:57 PM

I guess I’m in the minority believing that Obama is doing exactly what he wanted to do all along and that is take the US economy down to the crisis level like Greece and Italy and then step into the fray riding the white horse of the federal gov. to the rescue. That would assure that the US would become a socialist government and many more people would be on the gov teat. This puts much more power into the hands of DC and especially the WH where Obama has wanted the power all along. I wonder what the right wing conspiracy nut Naomi Wolf thinks of her boy now? She had written that GWB would never allow the 2008 elections to take place and that he would take over the gov by martial law. It looks like she may have been off by one president.

inspectorudy on February 2, 2012 at 12:59 PM

..with the greatest of respect, how would you handle running against the FIRST BLACK PRESIDENT without having all of the bleeding heart MSM come out and paint you as a vicious, sheet-wearing racist.

As such, expect them to roast him for virtually anything he says remotely bad about their beloved savior.

The War Planner on February 2, 2012 at 12:41 PM

Just tell the truth…

… Use his own words and policies against him.

Highlight the results of his failed ideology and contrast it with
American exceptionalism and freedom, but be relentless…

… Obowma has a billion dollars, his race, the bully pulpit of the Presidency of the United States, the Democrat Party, the media, the union goons, academia, Hollywood, the entire Left, all of the STIMULUS and TARP recipients to contribute to the Super PACS, let alone Europe, who Bernanke has been staying up nights to print more money for that will attack the nominee like we have never seen before.

That is why attacking Obowma now is so important, especially with four different voices and campaigns…

… but Mittens wants to play nice and only wants to go after Newt.

Seven Percent Solution on February 2, 2012 at 1:00 PM

Romney is nothing like Obama at all and those of you comparing the two are way off base. Romney earned what he has and never gained a position based on race or affirmative action. Romney has a solid sucessful business background where a huge net gain of jobs and stronger companies were created.

***

JetBlast on February 2, 2012 at 12:47 PM

Yeah, Romney is right out of a Horatio Alger novel. No connections whatsoever. He’s named after his dad’s best friend, J. Williard Marriot, the hotel magnate. Romney went to high school at Cranbrook Academy in Bloomfield Hills, MI. Talk about exclusive. My suburban Cincinnati public high school played them in a home-and-home baseball series years ago. They stopped to play us on their way to FL for a spring tour of sorts. We traveled up there to play them on a Sunday after getting rained out in Ann Arbor the day before. I’ve never played on a plusher diamond in my life. And their pitcher was a black guy named Rupert.

Romney is about as plugged in as anyone can possibly be. The guy was born on third base, and you and he are trying to convince me that he hit a triple.

I’m not buyin’ it.

BuckeyeSam on February 2, 2012 at 1:01 PM

Well, Romney probably won’t nominate Eric Holder for a vacant Supreme Court seat.
Betenoire on February 2, 2012 at 12:10 PM

Yeah, because Romney has never nominated or appointed a democrat to a judgeship.

OH… Wait…

Nevermind.

LegendHasIt on February 2, 2012 at 1:05 PM

Reps love stats, Dems love narratives – and in todays America – narratives win.

Odie1941 on February 2, 2012 at 12:35 PM
You understand of course that this explains Obama low approval ratings ?

Oh wait…no you didn’t ….
Bwahahahahahahahahahahahah

DevilsPrinciple on February 2, 2012 at 12:55 PM

Are you talking about the artificially constructed and unscientific polls that heavily lean Dem and so-called Indy voters to artificially increase Obama’s numbers???

No, you didn’t.

Thats a direct reult of a manipulated narrative by Dem’s, MSM and the so-called “independent polling centers”… like CNN/ABC/IPSOS/MSNBC/WAPO/ZOGBY… etc, etc.

But let me point out the one stat the fools in America lap up… Obama always has had a net + likeability factor.

Odie1941 on February 2, 2012 at 1:07 PM

Romney was named after a hotel magnate? Well that does it then, I’m not voting for him. /s

JetBlast on February 2, 2012 at 1:08 PM

Ed, from your piece in The Fiscal Times:

Gingrich was Speaker during the period that arguably produced the last balanced federal budgets through flat spending

Ron Paul already exposed that to have been a product of accounting gimmickery. But Newt was working under the system that was in place so I guess it’s OK, right?

The only candidate I trust to do anything serious about our deficits and national debt is Ron Paul. I just wish he were a little more moderate with his foreign policy.

ncconservative on February 2, 2012 at 1:09 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

He’s simply NOT Obama…

stacman on February 2, 2012 at 1:09 PM

Ladies and gentlemen: why we should rejoice no matter who the nominee is, this fool’s going down.

The War Planner on February 2, 2012 at 12:06 PM

agreed… but at what cost? As it stands it looks as if there we are not going to be the benefactors of a fiscally prudent leader and its attending turn of the economy, looooong slog thru mediocrity is what its looking like, no matter the R nominee.

NY Conservative on February 2, 2012 at 1:10 PM

“The CBO projects unemployment will rise, hitting 8.8 percent in the third quarter of the year, the heart of the campaign.”

Well they got the trend right, they’re just waaaaay off on their starting point.

Unemployment isn’t going to RISE to 8.8 percent. Real unemployment (U6) was at 15.2% for December. And it didn’t get better in January, with layoffs of holiday season workers.

President FAIL is in deep doo doo, if even 3 or 4% of the voting populace get the teensiest idea of just how staggeringly incompetent he is. And despite the MSM’s best efforts, that news is getting out.

GrassMudHorsey on February 2, 2012 at 1:12 PM

Manpower

Schadenfreude on February 2, 2012 at 1:19 PM

Obama has nothing to worry about.

Holder is teflon.

Axelrod and Obama have angels and gods with them. Their opposition is incredibly stupid.

Schadenfreude on February 2, 2012 at 1:20 PM

The CBO is just setting low expectations so that Obama can outperform. On Wall Street the game is called “beat the numbers”. Companies like Microsoft have been playing it for decades.

Wigglesworth on February 2, 2012 at 1:28 PM

Axelrod and Obama have angels and gods with them.
Schadenfreude on February 2, 2012 at 1:20 PM

Demons, more like.

Their opposition is incredibly stupid.

You got that part precisely right

LegendHasIt on February 2, 2012 at 1:34 PM

Leaving a trail of scorched earth behind them.
clippermiami on February 2, 2012 at 12:25 PM

Scrotched earth.

Lanceman on February 2, 2012 at 1:43 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

100% caucasian?

BobMbx on February 2, 2012 at 1:56 PM

… but Mittens wants to play nice and only wants to go after Newt.

Seven Percent Solution on February 2, 2012 at 1:00 PM

..not to dispute you but to dispute you, why is it every time I see a Mittens speech, 75% of it is devoted to deconstructing Obama? Oh but wait, you mean those evil PACs that are taking down Gingrich? What will those orgs do when Newt’s out of the game? Retire? Tone down their rhetoric? Play paddy cake with The Pantload?

Somehow, I do not think so, Seven.

The War Planner on February 2, 2012 at 1:58 PM

And their pitcher was a black guy named Rupert.

BuckeyeSam on February 2, 2012 at 1:01 PM

Close the internets. We’re done.

This is HA Comment of All-Time.

BobMbx on February 2, 2012 at 1:58 PM

If Obama gets reelected I am going to worry about the sanity collective intelligence of this country.

Smedley on February 2, 2012 at 12:09 PM

FIFY

MidniteRambler on February 2, 2012 at 2:04 PM

Ron Paul already exposed that to have been a product of accounting gimmickery. But Newt was working under the system that was in place so I guess it’s OK, right?

The only candidate I trust to do anything serious about our deficits and national debt is Ron Paul. I just wish he were a little more moderate with his foreign policy.

ncconservative on February 2, 2012 at 1:09 PM

Gingrich is the only candidate who has actually succeeded at achieving any part of the conservative agenda, including the balancing of the budget. Yeah, there was a social security/Medicaid gimmick in play, but it was a significant reduction in government spending, achieved against a hostile President, with the opposing party in control of the Senate, and in the face of the headwind called “The Clinton Slime Machine.” So you’re a damned fool if you discount it. It was a significant achievement in the right direction.

For that matter, you’re doubly a damned fool if you consider Ron Paul a serious candidate even for a millisecond. Paul is a loon. Even on the topics about which he knows something — national finance and the US Constitution — his positions are studded with factual missteps. His foreign policy is a patchwork of policies that made sense in 1790 woven together with brainless progressive sound bites. And if, by some dark miracle, he became the Republican nominee, the exposure of his newsletters from the 1990s would not only settle the election by mid-September, but would saddle the Republican party with a reputation for racism that would not be erased for a generation.

PLEASE get Ron Paul out of your vocabulary. He’s worse than the worst plausible disaster this year.

philwynk on February 2, 2012 at 2:11 PM

If unemployment creeps up to nearly 9%, I just don’t see how Obama wins reelection, even if Romney wore an ascot for the rest of the campaign and accepted the Republican nomination on the deck of a yacht.

BradTank on February 2, 2012 at 2:14 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

He’ll not appoint a criminal as Attorney General, and he’ll not throw billions of dollars in the direction of public employee unions.

No, he will not come within 3 light years of addressing the real problems that underlie America’s decline, and he will barely slow the slide into Stalinism. If we were sane, his name would not even be in consideration. But just the possibility of having an Attorney General who cares what the law is is an improvement.

philwynk on February 2, 2012 at 2:18 PM

The War Planner on February 2, 2012 at 12:06 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

So you’ll be pulling that lever for Zero then, huh?

We’ll so how four more years of that works out for ya…
TIME TO QUIT B*TCHING….

litebeam1 on February 2, 2012 at 2:19 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

Well, Romney probably won’t nominate Eric Holder for a vacant Supreme Court seat.

Betenoire on February 2, 2012 at 12:10 PM

Please see ‘Souter, David’.

especially with the (purely coincidental I’m sure) presences of one John Sununu in the Romney camp.

Sorry, but the potential of Romney’s SCOTUS appointments don’t have me all warm and fuzzy.

Lost in Jersey on February 2, 2012 at 2:21 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

So you are in full agreement with George Soros?

There are clearly problems with Romney, but to suggest he is the same as Obama is foolish, and if it inspires people to not vote, that attitude is destructive. Grow up.

iurockhead on February 2, 2012 at 2:24 PM

And Mitt will be different than Obama how, exactly?

lorien1973 on February 2, 2012 at 12:08 PM

Well, Romney probably won’t nominate Eric Holder for a vacant Supreme Court seat.

Betenoire on February 2, 2012 at 12:10 PM

Please see ‘Souter, David’.

especially with the (purely coincidental I’m sure) presences of one John Sununu in the Romney camp.

Sorry, but the potential of Romney’s SCOTUS appointments don’t have me all warm and fuzzy.

Lost in Jersey on February 2, 2012 at 2:21 PM

And Reagan gave us Sandra Day O’Connor and Anthony Kennedy.

Look, it’s very hard to know what a judge is going to do decades from now, and it’s even harder when you have to go through a Democrat Senate for approval. Bush Sr. gave us Souter, but also Clarence Thomas.

I genuinely think even moderate Republicans TRY to get conservative justices. That’s a big improvement over Democrat Presidents that TRY to give us left-wing judges.

If you think Obama’s judicial nominations will be better than Romney’s, you need to get back to your padded cell before you hurt yourself.

BradTank on February 2, 2012 at 2:30 PM

I just caught the picture finally! It’s of that thing that JugEars has been trying to stick up our worried back pie-holes again! It’s a wonder we are hurting?

KOOLAID2 on February 2, 2012 at 2:35 PM

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