Monday, November 21, 2011

Advantage Obama

Now that the "Super Committee" has failed, congresscritters are already talking about ways to get around the $2.2 trillion in automatic across-the-board budget cuts that start kicking in come 2013 if a deal doesn't get done. Anyone remember Gramm-Ruddman-Hollings? Much deficit-cutting sound and fury, signifying nothing.

The difference, if he sticks to his guns, is President Barack Obama, per WaPo:

My message to them is simple: No. I will veto any effort to get rid of those automatic spending cuts.

With one pull quote -- again, if he sticks to his guns -- Obama transforms himself into the alpha deficit uber-hawk -- and, more importantly, into the adult in the room, telling Congress that he's not going to rescue them from their own foolishness and that if they can't figure out for themselves how to play nice, their toys will be taken away.

When his Republican opponent attacks him as a budget blocker, all he has to say is "I'm the chief executive. It's Congress that has to legislate. All I can really do is insist that they legislate within their means on pain of veto, and that's exactly what I'm doing. The details are up to them."

When the constituencies -- including his own -- start howling about the coming cuts, all he has to say is "don't talk to me, talk to Congress."

And here's the secret:

When it gets down to the level it's headed toward, the entitlement constituencies are more powerful than the corporate welfare constituencies.

A congresscritter can afford to be Lockheed Martin's bitch and shamelessly whore himself out to K Street with near-impunity ... as long as Grandma's monthly Social Security deposit makes it to the bank.

But if it's one or the other, the grandmas' votes trump the lobbyists' campaign contributions.

It's just that simple.

All Obama has to do is maintain his cool and he'll not only win re-election but get the budget cuts he wants from where he wants them (the insanely bloated "defense" budget).

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