Yesterday, the Obama administration unveiled its proposal to avert the looming fiscal showdown. The plan included $1.6 trillion in increased taxes on the rich over the next decade, $400 billion in savings to be found in Medicare and other social programs, $50 billion in stimulus spending to begin next year, and an end to current debt ceiling rules.
This proposal is not new. It reflects the very policies Obama not only put forth in 2011, as Kevin Drum noted, but also campaigned on extensively this year. They are the very policies that the American public voted for in November when they granted Obama another four years. Exit polling also showed that 60 percent of voters wanted to see income taxes increased for wealthy Americans.
However, these facts didn’t stop conservatives from acting as though Obama had proposed the “Kill All The Puppies Act of 2012”. Here are five overreactions to Obama’s plan:
- Worse than surrender in the Civil War: Leading conservative commentator Charles Krauthammer likened Obama’s proposal to the terms of surrender offered to Confederates in the Civil War, only the president’s deal was worse. “It’s not just a bad deal, this is really an insulting deal… Robert E. Lee was offered easier terms at Appomattox and he lost the Civil War,” said Krauthammer.
- Out of a fairytale: Writing in her Wall Street Journal column, Kimberley Strassel lambasted the plan as “something out of Wonderland and Oz combined.” She went on to argue that Obama wasn’t negotiating in good faith. “The most frightening aspect of the White House proposal is that it wasn’t an error.”
- “Nothing good can come of negotiating further”: RedState editor Erick Erickson, whose counsel congressional Republicans regularly seek, advised the GOP to pack up, go home, and take the country over the cliff. “Nothing good can come of negotiating further,” Erickson wrote. “The GOP should pass what they want and promptly go home. Let the Democrats stay and sort things out. Dive.”
- “I’d walk out”: MSNBC host Joe Scarborough, a former GOP congressman, said that his Party ought to walk out of negotiations, saying Obama’s proposal was solely meant to “provoke” House Republicans. Speaking on his morning show, Scarborough detailed what his reaction would have been had he been in negotiations: “I would have said, ‘We’re all busy people, this is a critical time, if you’re going to come over here and insult us and intentionally try to provoke us, you can do that but I’m going back to work now.’ And I’d walk out.”
- “Congress should dive headlong off fiscal cliff”: After a lengthy column detailing how going over the fiscal cliff “would shock the economy,” Daily Caller editor Tucker Carlson advised GOPers to “dive headlong off fiscal cliff” following Obama’s proposal. “Republicans don’t have a lot of good choices right now,” Tucker wrote. “They might as well try it.”