Fiscal cliff: Does Boehner have the votes? Update: Boehner vs. Cantor? Update: Boehner to vote yes? Report: House has majority for Senate bill; Update: Bill passes, 257-167

posted at 1:23 pm on January 1, 2013 by Allahpundit

I can’t believe this is what we’re doing on our holiday.

Well said, but don’t forget the punchline: Because the Bush tax cuts will be extended for most earners with next to nothing in offsetting spending cuts, the “deficit reduction deal” technically increases the deficit by nearly $4 trillion over the next decade. Bill Kristol, urging the House to vote yes in the interest of avoiding sequester defense cuts, aptly describes it as a “mess”:

The fiscal cliff deal that the Senate passed early this morning is ridiculous in too many ways to count. There seem to be no figures from the Congressional Budget Office and only “very preliminary” figures from the Joint Tax Committee about the real spending and revenue implications. The two month delay of the sequester will make actual governance even more difficult (how is the Pentagon supposed to plan for the rest of the year?). The sequester delay is funded by a gimmick with retirement savings tax rules that is a caricature of what has become of Washington legislation and policy making. Working Americans making less than $400,000 will be shocked when they find that, contrary to promises from both parties, their taxes are in fact going up (the payroll tax). And we will face another cliff when we hit the debt ceiling and the sequester again in two months.

The deal is a sad commentary on our politics today.

Actually, we face two more cliffs, first the sequester/debt ceiling standoff and then another over the next budget continuing resolution. If you’re serious about fiscal sustainability, the stakes couldn’t be lower. To the extent today’s House vote is interesting, it’s interesting as a type of bread-and-circus: Whether they pass the Senate bill today or pass a marginally less dismal deal in a week or two, the only thing that’s interesting about any of this is the facile political suspense of whether Boehner can muster enough Republican votes, whether Biden can keep Pelosi and House Democrats in line, and what it all means for the next zero-stakes confrontation between Obama and the GOP a few months from now. Ultimately, I think The One is the only player here who had appropriate contempt for the process. He knew nothing important would be achieved so he focused on tax hikes to try to diminish the opposition by driving a wedge in their caucus. In the end, he gave a little on the income threshold in exchange for fracturing House Republicans. Not a bad trade short-term.

Anyway. Does Boehner have the votes? Quite possibly, says the Hill:

To assess party loyalty, The Hill analyzed five controversial bills on fiscal matters that sparked outcry from factions on the right and significant defections from House GOP members: a March 15, 2011 stopgap funding bill; an April 14, 2011 bill that averted a government shutdown; an Aug. 1 roll call on the Budget Control Act; a Nov. 17, 2011 “minibus” appropriations measure; and a Feb. 17, 2012 vote to extend the payroll tax holiday. Republican defections ranged from 54 to 101 on these bills.

Despite the GOP infighting, 92 House Republicans didn’t buck leadership on any on of those measures. This group includes leadership lawmakers, committee and subcommittee chairmen and a surprising number of freshman members. Some of Boehner’s loyal legislators include GOP Reps. Cole, Steven LaTourette (Ohio), Pete King (N.Y.), Darrell Issa (Calif.), Gary Miller (Calif.), Tom Marino (Pa.), Jon Runyan (N.J.) and Steve Stivers (Ohio)…

There are an additional 51 House Republicans who broke ranks on only one of the five votes reviewed by The Hill, including GOP Reps. Bob Goodlatte (Va.), Jeb Hensarling (Texas), Tom Latham (Iowa), Steve Scalise (La.) and Frank Wolf (Va.).

That’s 143 gettable votes. Even if he lost 22 of those, he’d still have enough left over to keep his promise not to bring something to the floor that isn’t supported by a majority of House Republicans. The intrigue will come if he’s close to the magic number but not quite there. In that case, he’ll have to choose: Does he bring the bill to the floor anyway, risking a revolt in Thursday’s Speaker election, or does he torpedo the bill even though it likely will have majority support among the entire House? The GOP caucus is meeting as I write this to sound out its members, but reportedly they’re planning to have at least one more meeting today before making a decision on whether to vote. Are you not entertained?

Here’s Tom Cole, a Boehner loyalist, telling MSNBC he’ll definitely vote for the bill. He predicted this morning that a majority of House Republicans will vote yes as well. One other subplot to watch out for: How will Paul Ryan vote? He backed Boehner on Plan B, but with Rubio having voted no last night, the anti-tax ante for 2016 contenders has been upped. Ryan’s dilemma is that he wields much more influence over his caucus colleagues than Rubio does over his, so if he peels off, he could take enough with him to jeopardize the bill. Exit question: Democrats are crowing this morning that, having forced the GOP to accept new tax hikes now, it’ll be easier to make them do so again during the debt-ceiling negotiations. Is that true or will it actually be harder next time after Republicans face a backlash from their base and insist that they already checked the tax box back during the fiscal-cliff compromise?

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Update: Hmmmmmmmmmm.

Update: Sure sounds like we’re not going to have a vote today.

Update: More from Politico:

An overwhelming number of House Republicans in a party meeting Tuesday are calling on their leadership to amend the Senate’s bill to avert the fiscal cliff and send it back to the upper chamber, according to several sources in the meeting…

There is also some regret among Republicans about the party defeating Speaker John Boehner’s “Plan B” before the holidays, which would have raised taxes on millionaires, whereas the bill the Senate passed around 2 a.m. New Year’s Day raises taxes on households making more than $450,000…

Emerging as a stick point among House Republicans is how McConnell and Biden delayed the sequester — automatic spending cuts. The two-month delay is being viewed by House Republicans as inadequate in that it doesn’t reduce spending immediately.

Hope they’re ready for the backlash tomorrow when markets open way down and our fair and balanced press corps gets back to work.

Update: At least we’re getting our money’s worth of political suspense from this ridiculous charade.

If Boehner brings the bill to the floor over Cantor’s opposition, does that guarantee a “Boehner vs. Cantor” election for Speaker on Thursday?

Update: A few commenters are grumbling about my backlash point above. Fact: There will be a backlash tomorrow if this doesn’t pass. It is what it is. And that’s fine — it’s worth driving a hard bargain to get something important done, even at the price of a backlash. Just remind me again what “important” goal will be achieved by forcing a new round of negotiations. What sort of spending cuts do you expect to see here? A trillion dollars over 10 years when we’re running trillion-dollar deficits annually? Even if they got Obama to agree to that, why would you believe that future Congresses would allow those cuts to happen down the line? This entire process is an elaborate charade designed to postpone the ultimate reckoning on entitlement reform, and you’re simply not going to wring serious entitlement reform out of the Democrats given the two parties’ current postures. Obama just won reelection; the Democrats expanded their numbers in the House and Senate; entitlement reform remains depressingly unpopular among the public despite attempts to educate them about the role mandatory spending plays in driving the national debt. House Republicans aren’t going to hold out for weeks on end in the futile hope of revamping Medicare against that backdrop while middle-class voters stew over their new, higher tax brackets. Why risk some of the GOP’s small reserve of political capital on a deal that’s only negligibly less terrible than this one? I understand the “let it burn” strategy, to force the public to fully absorb the cost of big government. I don’t understand this one.

A quote from Philip Klein: “There’s a lot to hate in this deal, no doubt. But any honest assessment of it must grapple with the reality of Obama as president, Harry Reid as Senate Majority Leader and $4.5 trillion in automatic tax hikes hitting in the new year. With this in mind, I’d rate the deal as objectively bad, but relatively good.”

Update: House Republicans weigh the backlash factor.

Update: If this is true, Boehner’s goal of 120+ Republican votes seems impossible:

Update: And now some pressure on Boehner from the left as a Democratic aide warns that the Senate bill is a take-it-or-leave-it proposition:

“The House Republicans have two choices: cut their losses and pass the deal now, or else put up a fight they cannot win and pass the same deal a few days now after being further humiliated,” said a Senate Democratic leadership aide.

Another senior Democratic aide said Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) will not reconsider the bill, which passed by a vote of 89 to 8.

“We’re done,” said the aide.

Update: The word on Twitter is that the GOP caucus will huddle at 5:15 ET. Possible outcomes: Boehner has the votes for the Senate plan and brings it to the floor to try to pass it; Boehner *doesn’t* have the votes but brings it to the floor so that House Republicans can add amendments related to spending cuts; Boehner refuses to bring it to the floor. The first outcome seems unlikely and the third would suffer from terrible optics, so expect JB to choose what’s behind door number two.

Update: Good question.

Update: Sounds like Boehner’s going to give the Senate bill a shot — maybe.

In other words, for the Senate bill to come to the floor, something like 15 Republicans have to oppose amending the bill to include spending cuts. Are there 15 in the entire caucus willing to go on record and do that, even if they’re doing it in the interest of trying to pass the Senate bill now and avert fiscal-cliff aftershocks tomorrow?

Update: The strategy here, I assume, is to use the prospective failure of the amended bill to prove to Republicans that nothing except the Senate bill can pass the House. If they can’t get 218 among their own caucus to support extending the negotiations by demanding cuts, then maybe some GOPers who dislike the Senate bill will hold their noses and vote for it.

Update: Yep, sure sounds like that’s what Boehner has in mind. He’s trying to get the Senate bill through:

Update: A Senate Democratic leadership aide reiterates that a vote to amend the bill in the House is effectively a vote to kill the Senate bill. There’ll be no more fiscal cliff action until the new Congress is seated on Thursday. Quote: “The aide added that House Republicans should not have stepped away from White House negotiations if they needed spending reductions to get the deal.”

Update: DrewM wonders if the spending-cuts amendment might fail simply because some critical mass of conservatives refuses to vote for any bill that doesn’t extend the Bush tax cuts for everyone. In other words, they’ll vote no even on an amended bill because it lets taxes go up on earners who make $450K. The amount of spending cuts attached will be irrelevant. If that’s what they end up doing, it’ll be an awfully dangerous gamble. Once the amended bill fails, you’ll see 100+ Democratic votes flood in for the unamended Senate bill; conceivably you could see nearly the entire Dem caucus vote yes, which means it would take only 40-50 Republicans to vote with them to pass the Biden/McConnell bill with zero cuts. (One of the earlier updates above suggested that that might be feasible.) What that would mean for Boehner’s Speakership, given that he’ll have violated the “majority of the majority” rule to pass it, I don’t know.

Another possibility: What if the amended bill fails and then the up-or-down vote on the Senate bill fails too? After the failure of Plan B and then the failure of two compromise bills, the narrative tomorrow will be that virtually nothing can pass the House.

Update: Sounds like an up-or-down vote might be coming:

Update: Wow. First time I’ve heard this all day:

Update: Just to underscore my point earlier about what a farce this all is, here’s what the House is mulling as their big counteroffer to the Senate on spending:

If there are enough GOP votes to pass the first approach, the House would amend the fiscal cliff bill and send it back to the Senate, the aide said. A second senior GOP leadership aide said that leaders were mulling adding $300 billion in spending cuts to the bill. Details of those cuts weren’t yet available.

That’s $300 billion over 10 years, I take it, or $30 billion annually. Now, go look at this graphic at Zero Hedge and see for yourself how much $30 billion is relative to the annual deficits we’re running these days. This “spending cuts” proposal is a face-saving gesture by the GOP, nothing more. And it still might not pass their own caucus.

Update: Robert Costa says the spending-cuts amendment is in deep trouble:

Can Pelosi deliver 150-170 Democrats? That’s a tall order even for her.

Update: According to GOP Rep. Tim Murphy, the House will vote on the Senate bill sometime tonight. Apparently they couldn’t find 218 Republicans willing to vote for the bill even with a few hundred billion in spending cuts tacked on as an amendment.

Update: I’m honestly shocked:

Remember, the Speaker typically doesn’t vote on bills. He’ll get enough flak from conservative groups if this thing passes with less than a Republican majority that you’d think he wouldn’t want to double down by lending his own vote to the compromise, especially with Cantor publicly opposed to the bill. Either he’s supremely confident that there aren’t 17 Republicans in the caucus willing to block his election as Speaker on Thursday or he’s reached the point where he doesn’t care if they do.

Update: Robert Costa says Boehner’s confident he has 218 from the full House for the Senate bill:

Chuck Todd hears that the vote may come at around 9:30 ET.

Update: Hmmmm:

Update: A footnote from Robert Costa: Allegedly, Boehner will vote only if his vote is needed to get to 218.

Update: The word on Twitter is that the final vote will come at around 11:15 p.m. ET. If you’re sticking around for the end of this charade, you’re a more diligent political junkie than me.

Update: At 11 p.m. ET, it’s a done deal. 257-167, with Democrats providing most of the votes. The Dems split 172-16, Republicans split 85-151. Boehner didn’t come close to satisfying the “majority of the majority” rule, which leaves him on thin ice for Thursday’s Speaker vote. At least he didn’t hide, though: He voted yes tonight, as did Paul Ryan, much to Team Rubio’s delight. Meanwhile, the rest of the leadership team — i.e. Eric Cantor and Kevin McCarthy — voted no, although Cantor waited until the bill had 218 votes to register his meaningless disapproval.

Hard to believe we might have the same leadership in the next Congress as we did for this process, but then not long ago it was also hard to believe we’d have the same leadership in the White House and the Senate in 2013 as we had in 2012. And yet here we are.


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75% of Americans claim to be Christian. For those 75% what don’t you understand about “Thou Shalt not Covet?”

chemman on January 1, 2013 at 2:31 PM

Exactly. And theft is wrong even if legal.

davidk on January 1, 2013 at 2:34 PM

God damn arrogant McConnell into eternal Hades, on Earth and later.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:34 PM

letget on January 1, 2013 at 2:31 PM

How could THAT happen?

Now that everyone sees there is little cutting they are getting some pushback.

I’m aghast with the Senate. Especially Kelly Ayotte.

dogsoldier on January 1, 2013 at 2:34 PM

This bill is better than I’d hoped for, in terms of holding down tax increases.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:32 PM

This bill is better than I expected but not better than I hoped for.

davidk on January 1, 2013 at 2:37 PM

If the Rs in Congress cave to the tyranny of the dummy senate and the idiotic charlatan Obama, make no mistake about it, YOU will all be thrown out in 2014!!!

The TEA party round One will have been just an aperitif.

YOU have not seen the wrath of the people who still love the land, Yet!

Get a pair and sanity, or ALL Out, including the dummies from the senate. Such idiots there never were, with McConnell and McCain leading you…straight to the creches, where you belong, in Depends. May Ms. Lindsey change them for you, there.

YOU are all traitors of the US, with Obama the biggest of them all.

Such Swine are the ‘rulers’ of the US.

Wake up people, or your children will live in utter destitution, due to these hyennas.

Obama is a charltanic thug, a naceissistic mafioso of no comparision, ever, in all the history.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:38 PM

Bill Kristol, urging the House to vote yes in the interest of avoiding sequester defense cuts

Why does Kristol fail to understand that you cannot have a strong defence when you’re broke? At the rate we are spending money, there will be NOTHING left to spend on defence. That is exactly what happened in the UK, which, at this point, I highly doubt could successfully defend the Falkland Islands. Remember the little Libyan adventure that the US had with the UK and France? In the first 4 days, the UK had used 20% of its entire supply of Tomahawk missiles. How many did it have in its ENTIRE INVENTORY? 64. THAT’S SIXTY-FOUR.

Anyhoo, this is from Veronique de Rugy, with whom I completely agree:

The alleged brutality of the cuts is one of the biggest myth of 2012. For the most part, the sequestration “cuts” aren’t really cuts at all. According to the Congressional Budget Office, discretionary spending would grow from $1.047 trillion to $1.234 trillion without sequestration. With the sequestration cuts in place, it will instead grow from $1.047 to $1.147 trillion. Medicare, which also faces cuts in the sequestration process, follows a similar trend. That means that going through with sequestration is just the beginning. It won’t make a dent in the size of our debt, and more cuts will be needed in the future.Yet both sides oppose fulfilling the deal they agreed upon.

The U.S. just completed its fourth consecutive year of running an annual deficit over $1 trillion. Its gross debt-to-GDP ratio is already over 100 percent, and it’s going to get worse. Without changes, spending on Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid will soon consume half of the federal budget, squeezing much else out in the process. Not cutting spending shouldn’t be an option, and yet it looks like that’s exactly where we are heading.

Some more info and thoughts on defence cuts…

There Can Be No “Sacred Pork” – Defence Cuts Must Be On The Table

M2RB: Abattoir

Resist We Much on January 1, 2013 at 2:38 PM

when you have crooks running the country for the good of their constiuent groups (i.e. cronies)…it never ends well

@nancycordes

CBO score probably not helping matters in GOP meeting. CBO says bill adds $329B to deficit in 2013, $3.9 trillion over 10 years.

@jonahNRO

Except for the fact that deal raises taxes, increases the deficit and funnels more money to wind boondoggle, it’s great!

r keller on January 1, 2013 at 2:39 PM

The deal doesn’t address spending, but they will have to fight that battle during the debt ceiling negotiations.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:17 PM

Still drunk from last night, are you?

JPeterman on January 1, 2013 at 2:39 PM

I’m aghast with the Senate. Especially Kelly Ayotte.

dogsoldier on January 1, 2013 at 2:34 PM

They are all McCains, McConnells and Obamas.

May they all spontaneously combust for being traitors to the once great land.

These are whom you voted for.

Wake up people of America, or go into the actual abyss, you and your progeny. They are all destroying YOU and they live like emperors and Pompadours.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:40 PM

List who voted against in the Senate, aside from Rubio and Rand Paul. Haven’t had time to read, yet.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:40 PM

I realized that McConnell made a bad deal yesterday. But the more info that comes out, the more it is clear that McConnell has even less clue of what he is doing than Boehner.

Time for Boehner to kill this bill and use 400/450k as a baseline to actually cut spending and reduce the deficit.

milcus on January 1, 2013 at 2:41 PM

Breaking: Leaving mtg, Rep. Spencer Bachus says deal will “go back to the Senate.”

I thought Biden was the awesome dealmaker. Or is this more political theatre.

Wethal on January 1, 2013 at 2:42 PM

Don’t vote for it. They’ll be blamed either way….

sandee on January 1, 2013 at 2:42 PM

Elections have consequences, and my side lost.

This bill is better than I’d hoped for, in terms of holding down tax increases.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:32 PM

Make yourself a nice poster with those words and hang it on your wall, remind yourself everyday that the people who represent you rolled over and played dead when they should have fought.

Our government was designed the way it was for a reason, not as an “Oh well we lost so give in” system.

I don’t understand why anyone would accept a shiite sandwich because it uses fresh rather than stale bread.

Bishop on January 1, 2013 at 2:42 PM

We have reached the point where temporarily averting self-inflicted disasters at the last second is a political success.

— Jim Antle (@jimantle) January 1, 2013

God damn them all, starting with the goon in chief, and on down. They destroy the children/granchildren, in the least.

“Obama declares success”. He is a Pig.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:42 PM

“It will NEVER end. POS has been able to ream us a new one for 4+ years (without a fight I want to add) and it will NEVER be enough until we are a complete 3rd world sh!thole….”

The bill actually reduces some taxes by indexing the AMT. It leaves the estate tax virtually unchanged with a $5 mil threshold, vs. a $1 mil threshold ten years ago.

It also raises some taxes.

My liberal Facebook friends are moaning that the bill is a sellout to “the rich” and complaining that Obama was rolled by the GOP. Not true. Both sides got a little and gave a little. Democracy in action – you don’t get everything you want, but neither does the other side.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:42 PM

would

davidk on January 1, 2013 at 2:43 PM

Well the STUPID PARTY still passed this in the Senate.

Wake up Republicans we are not the new Democrat Party.

We either embrace Conservative Principals or we cease to be a party at all.

Steveangell on January 1, 2013 at 2:43 PM

No deal…..so when do the Fiscal Cliff effects take effect?

Answer: Never!
It was all a sham to raise taxes and increase spending.

albill on January 1, 2013 at 2:43 PM

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/hillary-clinton-blood-clot-life-threatening-medical-experts/story?id=18101213#.UOM7KXeynnw

I would am ashamed at what I thought.

davidk on January 1, 2013 at 2:40 PM

FIFM

davidk on January 1, 2013 at 2:44 PM

Make yourself a nice poster with those words and hang it on your wall, remind yourself everyday that the people who represent you rolled over and played dead when they should have fought.

Our government was designed the way it was for a reason, not as an “Oh well we lost so give in” system.

I don’t understand why anyone would accept a shiite sandwich because it uses fresh rather than stale bread.

Bishop on January 1, 2013 at 2:42 PM

Let them all eat the sh*t sandwich.

May all who brung these clowns, from the left to the right, especially all of you who brung Obama, twice, and yours, suffer incredibly dire lives, hungry, in the cold/dark.

Starve the Looters and go gulching. The swine, all of you, don’t deserve anyone’s hard labor. Let them all go to Hell.

If Boehner and Cantor don’t get it, get all their and their minions life styles by throwing them all OUT.

All of YOU!!!

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:45 PM

My liberal Facebook friends are moaning that the bill is a sellout to “the rich” and complaining that Obama was rolled by the GOP. Not true. Both sides got a little and gave a little. Democracy in action – you don’t get everything you want, but neither does the other side.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:42 PM

Your “friends” are playing you for a fool.

The Democrats got everything they wanted and more. They would have settled for raising taxes on those making a million.

The Republicans got nothing, nada. Well actually we killed the bill but the stinking Senate passed it.

Steveangell on January 1, 2013 at 2:45 PM

wow, the crack smokers are coming out of the woodwork like cockroaches in a Chicago ghetto a apartment today.

SWalker on January 1, 2013 at 2:20 PM

Public polls show the people do not support letting the tax cuts expire on the middle class but do support spending cuts in order to control the deficit. That is reality not crack pipe smoking. I would much rather fight for spending cuts that higher taxes. Besides, in mid-winter, the roaches in Chicago stay in the woodwork rather than leave the apartment. Shows what you know about Chicago.

KW64 on January 1, 2013 at 2:45 PM

Apparently you really can’t just walk into Mordor on the Potomac.

SWalker on January 1, 2013 at 1:50 PM

And the only way we will defeat Mordor on the Potomac is to quit sending Representatives there. We need to bring the government into the 21st Century. Representatives should stay in their states and when votes on bills are needed some form of Gotomeetings.com should be used. It won’t end cronyism but it will put a big dent into the “us verses them” that develops in Mordor on the Potomac.

chemman on January 1, 2013 at 2:46 PM

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:42 PM

Go to Hades, and may you and yours suffer the flames. I’ve had it with all you weasels. YOU unnerve me more than the principled commies do.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:46 PM

Well ok, the aholes will come back in a few months when they realize the $400k level didn’t work and start hitting a lower level, say $300k…then $250k…then $175K…then $100k. But still, COMPROMISE.

Then we can all join in the fun and it will be GRAND! Come on dude, I want you to have a seat at the table here with me, open your wallet and start paying your fair share while your political reps shove yet another compromise straight up your bunghole.

Bishop on January 1, 2013 at 2:25 PM

Even better, we’re guaranteed that taxes will go up on lower income levels because Baracka screamed and ranted yesterday that he would not allow ANY spending cuts without more and larger tax increases.

But sauropod is still there frantically waving his arms and talking about “compromise”, and when the whining screaming Baracka comes back with demands for more, sauropod will give him more in the name of “compromise”.

northdallasthirty on January 1, 2013 at 2:46 PM

Hitler dissolved the Parliament.

kenny on January 1, 2013 at 2:47 PM

CBO score probably not helping matters in GOP meeting. CBO says bill adds $329B to deficit in 2013, $3.9 trillion over 10 years.

Pffft, that can be taken care of by people like myself who make a certain amount. It will work because taxing the crap out of me happens in a vacuum and I will not react in any way to protect myself, nosiree bob.

People I care about are going to lose jobs if this goes through, meanwhile the people surrounding my little red county are busy calling conservatives fascists, thugs, racists, and murderers simply for existing. Tell me again why I’m supposed to accept this great deal and feed those mooching grifters?

Bishop on January 1, 2013 at 2:47 PM

Here is the only deal that is acceptable, give the Reps 15 mins to book their flights home. Leave the wolves in their sheep skins standing alone in both chambers. Let the theater be all about them.

Limerick on January 1, 2013 at 2:48 PM

People I care about are going to lose jobs if this goes through, meanwhile the people surrounding my little red county are busy calling conservatives fascists, thugs, racists, and murderers simply for existing. Tell me again why I’m supposed to accept this great deal and feed those mooching grifters?

Bishop on January 1, 2013 at 2:47 PM

Because sauropod won’t stand up to his liberal “friends” on Facebook.

Wonder if sauropod really believes in conservativism, or if he’s just a Meghan McCain/Jon Huntsman wannabe?

northdallasthirty on January 1, 2013 at 2:51 PM

Well maybe the POS spiked the football alittle too early. Amend the sucker

gophergirl on January 1, 2013 at 2:51 PM

Why don’t Republicans, well those conservatives against it anyway, make every effort to make it clear to the public that this ‘deficit reduction’ bill actually adds $329B to the deficit in 2013 and $3.9 trillion over 10 years? Only in D.C. politics does this make any sense.

supernova on January 1, 2013 at 2:52 PM

‘Gun Control Fails,’ Say Statistics from … Gun-Control Advocates

M2RB: Koffi Olomide (for Kenny :-))

Resist We Much on January 1, 2013 at 2:52 PM

Many of the GOP’s staunchest fiscal conservatives voted for the agreement, including Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma and Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama, the ranking Republican on the Senate Budget Committee.

God damn the swine.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:52 PM

Wonder if sauropod really believes in conservativism, or if he’s just a Meghan McCain/Jon Huntsman wannabe?

northdallasthirty on January 1, 2013 at 2:51 PM

NO, it’s an Obama-paid plant.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:53 PM

And the only way we will defeat Mordor on the Potomac is to quit sending Representatives there. We need to bring the government into the 21st Century. Representatives should stay in their states and when votes on bills are needed some form of Gotomeetings.com should be used. It won’t end cronyism but it will put a big dent into the “us verses them” that develops in Mordor on the Potomac.

chemman on January 1, 2013 at 2:46 PM

And put them live on TV, radio, internet explaining to their districts why they are voting yea or nay.

davidk on January 1, 2013 at 2:53 PM

Hope they’re ready for the backlash tomorrow when our fair and balanced press corps gets back to work.

Why, because it’s Wednesday? :)

scalleywag on January 1, 2013 at 2:54 PM

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:52 PM

Back away from the ban hammer, Schade, you are needed around here. Kick em, punch em, yell at them, but put some ice on those red ears.

Limerick on January 1, 2013 at 2:55 PM

Hey, if, as it appears, the House GOP have been backed into the corner in resolving the gap between taxes and spending by being forced to join in kicking the can down the road, they ought to at least require that Congress kick it to a specific destination.

Amend the bill to include a provision sending to the States for ratification an amendment to the Constitution requiring a balanced budget.

Dusty on January 1, 2013 at 2:55 PM

Burn! Burn! Burn! Burn!

Othniel on January 1, 2013 at 2:56 PM

There seem to be two sets of opinions here. One set, the clear majority, holds that any compromise with the Democrats is an unforgivable betrayal of principle. The other set, represented by just two or three of us (I guess), holds that compromise is a normal and necessary part of the democratic process.

In this forum, the second viewpoint is a weird aberration. But if we were to go outside the confines of Hot Air, I think we’d find that most people agree with the second approach, and regard the first approach as fanatical and absurd.

“Go to Hades, and may you and yours suffer the flames.”

Chillax, dude. You sound like Jonathan Edwards (“sinners in the hands of an angry God”) on a tear.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:57 PM

I’ll believe they don’t have the votes when I see it. I’ll be surprised it they don’t cave. Sick of it all. BURN.

Philly on January 1, 2013 at 2:57 PM

List who voted against in the Senate, aside from Rubio and Rand Paul. Haven’t had time to read, yet.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:40 PM

http://www.kxan.com/dpps/news/national/fiscal-cliff-how-each-senator-voted_5256440

davidk on January 1, 2013 at 2:57 PM

Hope they’re ready for the backlash tomorrow when markets open way down and our fair and balanced press corps gets back to work.

One can’t escape the reaper.

NO new taxes without spending cuts. This is what senator Obama believed in and considered “dereliction of duty” at the time.

Eat the poison now, Fool and fools.

Get some sense into Boehner or Cantor, or get them all OUT in 2014, to the very last one.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:57 PM

My liberal Facebook friends are moaning that the bill is a sellout to “the rich” and complaining that Obama was rolled by the GOP. Not true. Both sides got a little and gave a little. Democracy in action – you don’t get everything you want, but neither does the other side.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:42 PM

A picture says more than your 50 words…

Resist We Much on January 1, 2013 at 2:57 PM

Sources tell Fox News Boehner & Cantor are against Senate #fiscalcliff plan

Surprising. Maybe Boehner and Cantor have fortified themselves with alcohol.

Hey whatever works…

Will be even more surprising if this new found strength it last.

William Eaton on January 1, 2013 at 2:58 PM

They’re gonna get blamed no matter what happens

Eighty six this boondoggle

cmsinaz on January 1, 2013 at 2:59 PM

My liberal Facebook friends are moaning that the bill is a sellout to “the rich” and complaining that Obama was rolled by the GOP. Not true. Both sides got a little and gave a little. Democracy in action – you don’t get everything you want, but neither does the other side.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:42 PM

What did the republicans gain? This is exactly the plan obama proposed, except instead of the rate going up on $250,000k+, their deductions get limited, and the rate goes up on 400,000k+, so someone making $500,000 will pay more in taxes then if we went over the cliff.

It was never about protecting a certain income because we actually cared about those peoples money. It was about doing what is best in a macro economic sense to grow the economy for all, which would have been a radical tax cut or even a total transformation of our income tax system, coupled with major serious budget cuts with a plan to continue cutting going forward.

We are guaranteeing prolong economic stagnation if we continue making deals like this. Not that this specific deal is the end of the world, but it’s part of a pattern where we keep “compromising” toward less economic growth, less economic freedom, and a more and more powerful and hungry central government.

Timin203 on January 1, 2013 at 3:00 PM

Back away from the ban hammer, Schade, you are needed around here. Kick em, punch em, yell at them, but put some ice on those red ears.

Limerick on January 1, 2013 at 2:55 PM

It ain’t Stanlinland, yet. If it is, then it’s too late already.

Happy New Year, good one.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 3:00 PM

Let it all burn. I hope it comes crashing down hard.

But the reality is that won’t happen.

Even without a deal, they’ll start putting together piecemeal legislation to fix the middle class tax increases.

ButterflyDragon on January 1, 2013 at 3:00 PM

Stalinland

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 3:00 PM

I saw that last update and Romeo void popped in my head

cmsinaz on January 1, 2013 at 3:01 PM

Limerick, I apologize, profusely and sincerely, to the clean pigs.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 3:02 PM

I’m aghast with the Senate. Especially Kelly Ayotte.
dogsoldier on January 1, 2013 at 2:34 PM

Why? She has been a sellout to the RINO leadership since she arrived at the Senate.

karenhasfreedom on January 1, 2013 at 3:02 PM

Jason Chaffetz ‏@jasoninthehouse

Without substantial, real first year cuts in spending I can’t vote for the bill passed by the Senate late last night.

JPeterman on January 1, 2013 at 3:03 PM

Why? She has been a sellout to the RINO leadership since she arrived at the Senate.

karenhasfreedom on January 1, 2013 at 3:02 PM

Indeed, and one of the first to accompany Romney.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 3:03 PM

Hope they’re ready for the backlash tomorrow when markets open way down and our fair and balanced press corps gets back to work.

Your lame attempt to scare conservatives into abandoning their principals?

There is no Cliff. 4% of Government Spending is not a cliff.

Steveangell on January 1, 2013 at 3:04 PM

Limerick, I apologize, profusely and sincerely, to the clean pigs.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 3:02 PM

You cut hard and the foxhole needs all the blades it can get.

Limerick on January 1, 2013 at 3:04 PM

You cut hard and the foxhole needs all the blades it can get.

Limerick on January 1, 2013 at 3:04 PM

The masters of the foxhole need freedom more than anything. All should fight hard to maintain it. I’ll defend the freedom for all.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 3:06 PM

Chillax, dude. You sound like Jonathan Edwards (“sinners in the hands of an angry God”) on a tear.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:57 PM

And you sound like a weak young man quite well-versed in the rationalizations for shi++y behavior.

Just sayin’, bro.

M240H on January 1, 2013 at 3:06 PM

“It was about doing what is best in a macro economic sense to grow the economy for all, which would have been a radical tax cut or even a total transformation of our income tax system, coupled with major serious budget cuts with a plan to continue cutting going forward.”

I agree that this would have been better. A general reduction in rates coupled with elimination of loopholes (= tax code simplification) is needed. Intelligent budget cuts aimed at defunding alternative energy boondoggles, wasted foreign aid, destructive regulatory agencies, etc., would also be helpful.

But I never thought that was in the cards, because our side lost the presidential election.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 3:07 PM

Cantor is among the most opportunistic little boogers out there. The guy has spent 2 years directly up Boehner’s rear, but bucks now because he sees a chance at the gavel for himself if he plays it right.

Gingotts on January 1, 2013 at 3:08 PM

Chillax, dude. You sound like Jonathan Edwards (“sinners in the hands of an angry God”) on a tear.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:57 PM

Jonathan Edwards was probably the greatest American theologian/philosopher. His “Dissertation Concerning the End for Which God Created the World” is amazing, as is his unpublished “Essay on the Trinity.” I would personally consider being compared with him to be a great honor; though he would not see himself worth comparing to. :)

(Just an aside)

Othniel on January 1, 2013 at 3:09 PM

Extend unemployment benefits for another year?

So we’re essentially paying people to shut up about the job-killing policies of this administration. Sounds right.

The Rogue Tomato on January 1, 2013 at 3:09 PM

Your lame attempt to scare conservatives into abandoning their principals?

There is no Cliff. 4% of Government Spending is not a cliff.

Abandoning principles? What do you think is going to come out of this deal even if Cantor leads a conservative revolt against the Senate bill? The whole thing is a farce. No one’s going to touch entitlements. Even if the House extracts some spending cuts, it’ll be penny ante stuff. It’s all symbolism — “we demand cuts!” — and you’re falling for it. Talk to me when they start talking about Medicare in detail.

Allahpundit on January 1, 2013 at 3:09 PM

In this forum, the second viewpoint is a weird aberration. But if we were to go outside the confines of Hot Air, I think we’d find that most people agree with the second approach, and regard the first approach as fanatical and absurd.

“Go to Hades, and may you and yours suffer the flames.”

Chillax, dude. You sound like Jonathan Edwards (“sinners in the hands of an angry God”) on a tear.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:57 PM

41 dollars if tax increases to 1 dollar of cust is not a “compromise”, fool.

At to telling me what to do, that’ll be the day. You sound like the most moronic leftist around here. You and Edwards go to Hades.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 3:10 PM

cust = cuts

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 3:10 PM

I’m aghast with the Senate. Especially Kelly Ayotte.
dogsoldier on January 1, 2013 at 2:34 PM

Why? She has been a sellout to the RINO leadership since she arrived at the Senate.

karenhasfreedom on January 1, 2013 at 3:02 PM

Yeah, when you can’t count on a Northeastern feminist to hold true to conservative principles then who can you trust?

Gingotts on January 1, 2013 at 3:11 PM

Hope they’re ready for the backlash tomorrow when markets open way down and our fair and balanced press corps gets back to work.

WTF exactly do you WANT them to do, AP? Holy FFS.

Midas on January 1, 2013 at 3:11 PM

Democrats are crowing this morning that, having forced the GOP to accept new tax hikes now, it’ll be easier to make them do so again during the debt-ceiling negotiations.

Of course.

It’s the story of the GOP for the last 50 years. They compromise a little bit this year, and then compromise a bit more the next – and on and on.

The cumulative effect of this has been to firmly move the nation to the LEFT even while the GOP has promised CUTS in government.

I can’t believe that some idiots are actually out here arguing for another “compromise” – it’s simply going to result in moving the goal post more to the left.

You know – it’s TOUGH to stand on principle when you know that bad things are going to result – but those bad things are coming one way or the other.

Why not address those issues now?

The GOP should stand firmly against ANY tax increases whatsoever.

VOTE NO!!

(they won’t though)

HondaV65 on January 1, 2013 at 3:11 PM

I agree that this would have been better. A general reduction in rates coupled with elimination of loopholes (= tax code simplification) is needed. Intelligent budget cuts aimed at defunding alternative energy boondoggles, wasted foreign aid, destructive regulatory agencies, etc., would also be helpful.

But I never thought that was in the cards, because our side lost the presidential election.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 3:07 PM

Right. But that doesn’t mean the republicans have to go along with something they know is destructive and bad economic policy. Our system of checks and balances is designed so that the minority can protect their rights.

Timin203 on January 1, 2013 at 3:11 PM

Abandoning principles? What do you think is going to come out of this deal even if Cantor leads a conservative revolt against the Senate bill? The whole thing is a farce. No one’s going to touch entitlements. Even if the House extracts some spending cuts, it’ll be penny ante stuff. It’s all symbolism — “we demand cuts!” — and you’re falling for it. Talk to me when they start talking about Medicare in detail.

Allahpundit on January 1, 2013 at 3:09 PM

Agreed, from the left, to the right, with a few, very few exceptions, they’re all charlatans, lead by Obama.

Throw them all out, beg. 2014. Heck, a leftist congressman introduced the halt on their salary icreases, courtesy of Obama EO…go figure. Why didn’t someone from the right immediately think to halt it?

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 3:12 PM

My liberal Facebook friends are moaning that the bill is a sellout to “the rich” and complaining that Obama was rolled by the GOP. Not true. Both sides got a little and gave a little. Democracy in action – you don’t get everything you want, but neither does the other side.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 2:42 PM

So are mine. And everyone is whining in here. I think it’s time to chill as getting worked up over things isn’t good for our blood pressure:)

thebrokenrattle on January 1, 2013 at 3:13 PM

“Chillax, dude.”

I was just having some fun with Schadenfreude, who is clearly a nut.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 3:13 PM

WTF exactly do you WANT them to do, AP? Holy FFS.

Midas on January 1, 2013 at 3:11 PM

Better question: What do you want them to do? People are grumbling here that they should vote no and hold out. Okay, for what? What’s the big prize they’re going to get? A trillion in cuts over 10 years when we’ve been piling up trillion-dollar deficits *annually*? Unless and until both parties are willing to reform entitlements, this is all marginal nonsense.

Allahpundit on January 1, 2013 at 3:14 PM

Phillip Klein

There’s a lot to hate in this deal, no doubt. But any honest assessment of it must grapple with the reality of Obama as president, Harry Reid as Senate Majority Leader and $4.5 trillion in automatic tax hikes hitting in the new year. With this in mind, I’d rate the deal as objectively bad, but relatively good.

http://washingtonexaminer.com/the-good-bad-ugly-of-the-fiscal-cliff-deal/article/2517273#.UONAcHdn28x

we have to remember that the other side are bad actors. They want a much larger chunk of your money. As Brit Hume tweeted an hour ago…the Ds want Everyone to pay more Taxes so The Ds get to Spend more.

The left wants your money bad…the Left wants to spend more money…the Love to spend other people’s money. So they are not acting out of any rational world view…they Want Your Money.

Reid, Barry…and the press are on that side. And, no, don’t point to the EZ…they don’t care…they just want MORE MONEY

r keller on January 1, 2013 at 3:15 PM

tea party favorite Bob Gibbs (R-OH) is such a Boehner butt kissing fool…. time for Canton South & Amish Country to find a new Rep.

charmingtail on January 1, 2013 at 3:16 PM

Unless and until both parties are willing to reform entitlements, this is all marginal nonsense.

Allahpundit on January 1, 2013 at 3:14 PM

Thank you – yes!!

Priscilla on January 1, 2013 at 3:16 PM

Why don’t Republicans, well those conservatives against it anyway, make every effort to make it clear to the public that this ‘deficit reduction’ bill actually adds $329B to the deficit in 2013 and $3.9 trillion over 10 years? Only in D.C. politics does this make any sense.

supernova on January 1, 2013 at 2:52 PM

It is hard to get information to the public because of the MSM black out, however there ways around that but you need to do something that media will be forced to cover…something theatrical…something outrageous (not violent of course). All you have to do is follow the book written by the progressives on making a scene of yourselves.

Personally I am for those conservatives in the house to rampage through the Capitol rotunda, shouting no cuts, no peace…or something along those lines.

William Eaton on January 1, 2013 at 3:16 PM

Why? She has been a sellout to the RINO leadership since she arrived at the Senate.

karenhasfreedom on January 1, 2013 at 3:02 PM

Exactly – a sellout from the very first day who’s almost as bad as Snottie Brown was.

HondaV65 on January 1, 2013 at 3:16 PM

But I never thought that was in the cards, because our side lost the presidential election.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 3:07 PM

Obama wants and will go for:

1. Guns
2. Distruction of the dollar
3. VAT, in addition to all the other taxes
4. Carbon tax
5. Amnesty across the board
6. Global reparations (troops in all Africa, as a ploy for such)
7. No more electoral college
8. Destruction of general aviation
9. Obamacare to control all masses (databases, e-records of all kinds, who owns guns – always say “NO” if any hospital/clinic asks you)
10…etc

You just go like a sheep for all of them, just because he ‘won’.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 3:18 PM

The far right/tea partiers now must rightfully be seen as Obama’s minions — it’s no excuse that they are too stupid to realize this.

Obama and the far right will now tear the Republican party apart, setting the stage for socialism.

It’s no excuse that those who want to reject this deal are too stupid to understand that they now Obamabots.

blue13326 on January 1, 2013 at 3:18 PM

One can’t escape the reaper.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:57 PM

(Don’t Fear) The Reaper

SWalker on January 1, 2013 at 3:18 PM

Destruction of the dollar

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 3:18 PM

There is also some regret among Republicans about the party defeating Speaker John Boehner’s “Plan B” before the holidays

Of course, you dumbsh!ts.

Mark1971 on January 1, 2013 at 3:19 PM

Better question: What do you want them to do? People are grumbling here that they should vote no and hold out. Okay, for what? What’s the big prize they’re going to get? A trillion in cuts over 10 years when we’ve been piling up trillion-dollar deficits *annually*? Unless and until both parties are willing to reform entitlements, this is all marginal nonsense.

Allahpundit on January 1, 2013 at 3:14 PM

The republicans in the house are in the position to be in firm control for the new two years. They can either waste these years on these stupid “compromises” that hurt us, or they can set real lines in the sand on the debt limit, refused to bring up any legislation until we have a budget, etc., etc., to force the issue. It will deny Obama any of his agenda.

But the risk is that some of these congressmen could be voted out in ’13, which they are not a fan of. So I guess we can just go along to get along and hope that jeb bush wins the presidency in ’16, right? Because that’ll change things?

Timin203 on January 1, 2013 at 3:20 PM

“Chillax, dude.”

I was just having some fun with Schadenfreude, who is clearly a nut.

sauropod on January 1, 2013 at 3:13 PM

Meh, that’s a compliment, fool. I pride myself in being a free individual. I’d never, ever, want to be like anyone else…least like you.

Just don’t ever call me a sheep. You can compliment me any time by calling me any kind of “nut” you wish to call me. I call myself a coconut, ’cause it’s the biggest of them all.

Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 3:20 PM

Obama is a charltanic thug, a naceissistic mafioso of no comparision, ever, in all the history.
Schadenfreude on January 1, 2013 at 2:38 PM

Lmfao! Now be sure not to overstate things or give in to hyperbole now schadenfreude.

Genuine on January 1, 2013 at 3:21 PM

VOTE THEM ALL OUT !!!

TX-96 on January 1, 2013 at 3:21 PM

If Boehner brings the bill to the floor over Cantor’s opposition, does that guarantee a “Boehner vs. Cantor” election for Speaker on Thursday?

One more win for the Democrats.

This must be their best day ever.

Too bad they are not stupid and celebrate their wins in a big way that would be fun to watch.

Steveangell on January 1, 2013 at 3:22 PM

The far right/tea partiers now must rightfully be seen as Obama’s minions — it’s no excuse that they are too stupid to realize this.

Obama and the far right will now tear the Republican party apart, setting the stage for socialism.

It’s no excuse that those who want to reject this deal are too stupid to understand that they now Obamabots.

blue13326 on January 1, 2013 at 3:18 PM

And the establishment republicans are going along with everything Obama wants. They could have defunded OCare, or challenged the way in which is was passed, or done a million things if they really wanted to kill it. They don’t care — they throw out red meat to the base in the election, then go to DC and vote like progressives.

The fact that Boehner proposed raising taxes on people making $1 million plus a year is sickening to me. He conceded the point that the rich dont pay their “fair share” and that continuing to increase taxes has any chance of paying down our deficit.

Timin203 on January 1, 2013 at 3:23 PM

This is a great example of why republicans lose elections. The sqishy moderates can’t bear the thought of the press being against them if nothing is done. IT’S ABOUT PR TO THEM!

Screw a bad deal, vote conservative convictions. If this crap is passed the GOP will lose the house also.

I vote for a gu that is against raising taxes, etc.. So what does he do, he raises taxes and tells me what a great think he just did!

Start a new party, a conservative party!

Danielvito on January 1, 2013 at 3:23 PM

I do not think there is a better deal out there. We get alot in lower taxes with this. When it comes to the spending authorization bills, the House will have a lot more leverage and more public support as the subject turns to spending cuts.

KW64 on January 1, 2013 at 2:19 PM

There will be no mass support for spending cuts once Obama uses the bully pulpit to let the “masses” know those cuts will reduce or eliminate their free stuff. In two months, Obama will be demanding MORE spending and MORE taxes. He and his supporters are junkies and the sooner the Republicans realize that the sooner we can stop playing these silly games.

Wendya on January 1, 2013 at 3:24 PM

The republicans are commiting suicide on their political careers. Good.

mrscullen on January 1, 2013 at 3:24 PM

Better question: What do you want them to do? People are grumbling here that they should vote no and hold out. Okay, for what? What’s the big prize they’re going to get? A trillion in cuts over 10 years when we’ve been piling up trillion-dollar deficits *annually*? Unless and until both parties are willing to reform entitlements, this is all marginal nonsense.

Allahpundit on January 1, 2013 at 3:14 PM

IOk, have typed it several times in the last month or so, but I’ll do it again.

I want them to stand up for that which differentiates them, and for that which we sent them to the House to do.

Pass a bill that includes:

a) TAX CUTS FOR EVERYONE THAT PAYS TAXES. Not status quo, but real CUTS.
b) DRAMATIC SPECIFIC SPENDING CUTS. Sufficient to yield a budget surplus for the year.

Send it to the Senate and the President and hold a press conference at which you quickly state what has been passed, and dare the Senate/President to defy it, pointing out that the HOUSE holds the pursestrings, and that the HOUSE has been sent back with a GOP majority, and that the HOUSE will not fund one single cent for anything that remotely looks like the Democrats want it funded: Dept’s of Education, Interior, HHS, Obamacare, Planned Parenthood, etc – the list goes on. NOT. ONE. PENNY. Until the House bill is passed and signed. And then go home.

Any tax increase bill with GOP fingerprints on it means the death of the GOP – mark it.

Any bill that increases taxes will have further destroying impact on the economy, on employment, etc.

Any bill that doesn’t *actually* reduce spending – in specific and dramatic ways – is f*cking pointless, sorry.

I’m not sure what the hell you think a tax increase combined with spending increases and signed by the GOP will do to help the country, the economy, the citizens, the GOP itself, etc. I honestly don’t know what the hell you must be thinking to hope they go that route.

Midas on January 1, 2013 at 3:24 PM

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