HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Retired » Retired Forums » 2016 Postmortem (Forum) » America’s “bipartisan” de...

Thu Mar 12, 2015, 02:32 AM

 

America’s “bipartisan” delusion: How the White House learned to ignore Republicans

If you had to pinpoint the moment this worldview began to crystallize, it would probably be around the first debt-ceiling showdown, in 2011, when Obama tried repeatedly and desperately to cut a budget deal with House Speaker John Boehner only to realize, eventually, that Boehner did not have the power to negotiate. The administration has now decided that in many cases, even adversarial bargaining fails because the Republican leadership is not capable of planning tactically. “You have to be careful not to presume a lot of strategy for this group,” Pfeiffer said. “I’ve always believed that the fundamental, driving strategic ethos of the Republican House leadership has been, What do we do to get through the next caucus or conference without getting yelled at? We should never assume they have a long game. We used to spend a lot of time thinking that maybe Boehner is saying this to get himself some more room. And it’s like, no, that’s not actually the case. Usually he’s just saying it because he just said it or it’s the easiest thing to solve his immediate problem.”

This analysis puts the administration at odds with the reading of American politics that still dominates much of Washington reporting. Many political journalists imagine that the basic tension for the White House lies between Obama’s liberal base and appealing to Americans at the center, who will be crucial for tipping elections.

Pfeiffer believes the dynamic is, in fact, the opposite: “The incentive structure moves from going after the diminishing middle to motivating the base.” Ever since Republicans took control of the House four years ago, attempts to court Republicans have mostly failed while simultaneously dividing Democratic voters. Obama’s most politically successful maneuvers, by contrast, have all been unilateral and liberal. “Whenever we contemplate bold progressive action,” Pfeiffer said, “whether that’s the president’s endorsement of marriage equality, or coming out strong on power-plant rules to reduce current pollution, on immigration, on net neutrality, you get a lot of hemming and hawing in advance about what this is going to mean: Is this going to alienate people? Is this going to hurt the president’s approval ratings? What will this mean in red states?” And yet this hesitation has always proved overblown: “There’s never been a time when we’ve taken progressive action and regretted it.”

This was deeply at odds with the lesson Bill Clinton and most of his aides (many of whom staffed Obama’s administration) had taken away from his presidency. But by the beginning of Obama’s second term, at least, the president seemed fully convinced.
http://www.salon.com/2015/03/10/americas_bipartisan_delusion_how_the_white_house_learned_to_ignore_republicans/

7 replies, 1939 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 7 replies Author Time Post
Reply America’s “bipartisan” delusion: How the White House learned to ignore Republicans (Original post)
w4rma Mar 2015 OP
BlueCaliDem Mar 2015 #1
Demeter Mar 2015 #2
1StrongBlackMan Mar 2015 #3
Cal33 Mar 2015 #4
hollowdweller Mar 2015 #5
apnu Mar 2015 #6
myrna minx Mar 2015 #7

Response to w4rma (Original post)

Thu Mar 12, 2015, 02:41 AM

1. Good! There's no negotiating with a group that's already made up their minds to dismantle.

The Neo-Confederates posing as Republicans in the House and Senate have zero inclination to govern in a government they loathe and have sworn to "drown in a bath tub". There's no reasoning with these people, so it's important that every single Democrat understand this, full embrace this, and strategize accordingly and keep moving this country forward while blocking where the Neo-Confederates want to take this country backwards. Otherwise, Democrats will come across as weak, as "appeasers", and as failures, and NO ONE, especially not in this country where competitiveness is nurtured from a very young age and where losers are loathed and seen as something detestable, respects losers.



Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to w4rma (Original post)

Thu Mar 12, 2015, 05:35 AM

2. Slow Learners

 

I truly doubt the base hung around waiting...which is why Elizabeth Warren has such support.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to w4rma (Original post)

Thu Mar 12, 2015, 08:39 AM

3. Posted to for later

 

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to w4rma (Original post)

Thu Mar 12, 2015, 09:37 AM

4. The President should have known the NeoCons for what they really were, at the most, after one

 

year -- but he kept on trying, year after year. He wasted 5 good years.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to w4rma (Original post)

Thu Mar 12, 2015, 10:08 AM

5. This is one of the best most spot on articles on this subject I have read.

 


I hope Hillary reads it and it should be required reading for all democrats.

I think Warren totally gets it, and like the article says Obama now gets it but I'm not sure most dems or the media do. By trying to reach across they are unwittingly making it even harder.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to w4rma (Original post)

Thu Mar 12, 2015, 02:34 PM

6. Republicans haven't had a long game for 30 years.

Trickle-down Economics proves my point. Since Reagan, the Republican Party has been about themselves in that exact moment an nothing else is considered. Every single one of their policies displays this thinking.

For example: They all loved the PATRIOT ACT until it bit them in the ass. Now they scream about government privacy invasion and Big Brother.

Republicans have few operational brain cells. The few they have left seem to be concerned about where they can get food, sex or money.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to w4rma (Original post)

Thu Mar 12, 2015, 04:33 PM

7. K&R nt

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread