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Friday, January 30, 2009

Cute move

The Pumasphere will probably howl at the idea of Obama choosing Republican Senator Judd Gregg to be Commerce Secretary. But Gregg's state, New Hampshire, has a Democratic governor. If affable Al Franken can win (or cement his win -- how should one phrase it?) in MN, then the Democrats will reach the magic number of 60 seats.

You gotta admit, that's good politics. But it has one major drawback. The Dems will well and truly own this economy. There will be no-one else to blame if things get worse, as they likely will.

When Reagan enacted his tax cuts, the economy dove into a near-Depression. His friends in the media managed to convince most of the country that Jimmy Carter had caused that recession. Will Obama be given the same benefit of the spin?
Comments:
If Obama really wanted a Democratic Super Majority, wouldn't he have campaigned in the Georgia run-off election last fall?
 
I don't think the media convinced many of the people that Carter was to blame for the bad economic times during Reagan's first term. At least, they didn't accomplish that in real time, and only later, into the triumphalist re-election campaign time, if they accomplished that at all. (It's NOW considered

For, as of the mid-term elections of '82, the GOP and Reagan were so unpopular that their party lost 26 House seats (an historically high number), and in January of '83, Reagan's approval rating scraped as low as 35% (an extremely low approval rating). I think this shows without much question that most of the people blamed Reagan, despite whatever propaganda efforts were made on his behalf.

XI
 
Obamboozle will still pander to the GOP
 
I disagree that there will be no one other than the Democrats to blame if things get worse.

The Repubs may well have created a mess unfixable by mortal beings. They deserve full credit no matter what happens.
 
Two things:

One, traditionally, a replacement of the same party is chosen. (Has this tradition ever been broken? I am not aware of any case in which it has been, but if it has, how often has it been, and can anyone provide examples?) If an opposite-party pick is made, that leaves the door wide open to the GOP doing the same whenever they can. They'll do just as they did with the filibuster issue: lambaste the Dems for even thinking about it, then break records doing it themselves. If anyone complains, they can legitimately call the Dems hypocrites, unfair, etc., since they did it first (and even if they didn't do it first, the GOP can use their dominance of the MSM to keep repeating that meme until it sticks).
Two, when the Dems are in the majority, the Blue Dog Dems vote against the Party - at least where it really counts - so the supermajority will be in name only.

Katie, part of Obama's psychology - an effect of his personal history - is that he assumes he will get what he wants without having to really work for it. Add to that the fact that Obama avoids conflict, and campaigning in GA would have been a conflict between his desire for more power and his philosophy of not caring about anyone but himself.

Sergei Rostov
 
Perry - the problem with your logic is that Obama's supporter don't consider him to be a "mortal being." And, he fed that delusion by indicating that he - and he alone of the people running for President in 2008 - could solve Bush's mess.

I don't think Republicans are particularly worried about Democrats having a 60 seat majority in Senate. Sure, they'd rather have more of their number rather than less in both houses. But, I don't think they really want to try to obstruct whatever Obama and Democrats want to do. They're already having great success wringing (with not much effort) concessions from Obama on legislation and then voting against it fully. So, they can get their "fixes" to legislation and have full deniability when things don't work. Have cake, will eat.
 
Sergei:

Yes, out of 49 times it has happened, 11 times (22%) the appointed replacement was of a different party than the senator who was replaced.

From FiveThirtyEight.com, a Dec. 11th posting, complete with the names involved.

(They don't win election as general election candidates that often, which was the subject of his/her post.)

As to whether this would prompt GOP actions of the same sort, I don't think they'd need any such example to do this. Nor does it seem an outrageous partisan action, in my view. A governor appoints somebody of his own party? Hardly shocking.

XI
 
Thanks XI. I was under the impression that this was so far into the realm of "dirty pool" that it had never happened, since it could potentially shift the balance of power while going against the will of the voters in a major way. Guess I had a better impression of politicians' ethics than the reality. Oh well, that has happened before.
The Hill reports as of yesterday [1/30]
that sources close to Gregg say he won't step down unless his replacement is a Republican.
http://thehill.com/leading-the-news/republicans-say-gregg-wont-give-dems-60-2009-01-30.html

Sergei Rostov
 
Not to mention, Gregg voted voted to abolish the Commerce position in 1995.

Fox watching the henhouse much? Cuz it doesn't make any sense whatsoever to put a regulation hater in charge of regulation.
 
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