It's no secret I've been more than pessimistic about any deal to avert our going over the Fiscal Cliff. Between the continued presence of defeated Tea Party legislators who won't be out of power until after the deadline and those who've entered office promising to drive us over the cliff (e.g., Tom Massie, who's expressly stated he'd vote for driving over the cliff) there's no reason to be anything other than pessimistic. Boehner's Plan B didn't get enough votes to get out of the House, and that was a proposal to increase taxes at $1 Million income - why would we think there's enough to get out of the House at $250K or even $500K? To quote a top Democratic aide, "What I want to know is: if Boehner couldn't get $1 million through the House and now McConnell is caving at $450,000, then how does Boehner deal with this?"
"It's the same 40 to 50 chuckleheads that have screwed this place up all year," complained retiring Rep. Steven LaTourette, R-Ohio. Boehner has “done everything to make nice to them. Bring them along. It hasn't mattered. I don't fault him. He's done his best." In a last hurrah, Allen West and Joe Walsh with the help of Massie - the Chucklehead Chorus - continue to act as domestic terrorists - the Tealiban- and hold Americans hostage to their small box of crayon economic theories. We can only hope more responsible legislators in the next congress will be able to repair the damage done.
John Boehner can't control the extremists in his own party, he's as weak as any speaker the nation has every seen. Now, less than 11 hours from the precipice, Mitch McConnell is twisting in the wind 'negotiating' with Joe Biden. When there's no middle ground to be reached. Oh, there's talk about supplemental legislation to 'soften' the landing -- but that's not enough. There must be a 'cleaning of house' in Congress.
What Democrats have here is an opportunity -- an opportunity to expose clearly, once and for all, the know nothing intransigence of the Republicans as run by their extremist fanatic wing, the Tealiban. Next week there's the opportunity to propose legislation lowering taxes on the 98% -- and see if the Republicans will vote against that. Next week there can be a vote to extend the payroll tax holiday, to invest in infrastructure, to fund education and grow the economy. Next week -- there's an opportunity to bring sanity back to Washington DC while at the same time crushing the plague of ignorance become a political movement - the Tea Party plague.