A 'no' vote, really?
2 Political Junkies takes a look at the 18 senators and 144 House members who voted against legislation last week to reopen the government and raise the debt ceiling -- that is, "against a bill that averted a national default (and the resulting economic chaos that was sure to follow). Against a bill to reopen the guv'ment (allowing hundreds of thousands of guv'ment employees to get back to work). Who could possibly vote against that?
"Pennsylvania Sen. Pat Toomey [and] Pennsylvania House members Scott Perry, Joseph Pitts and, of course, Keith Rothfus, that's who. They voted to keep the memorials closed, they voted to damage the nation's credit rating and send the world into another economic crisis. All in a stupid attempt to stop the Affordable Care Act.
"Something to remember when they're up for re-election. Or they're quoted in the news about anything."
16 days in January
Gene Steuerle at The Government We Deserve writes of the next government shutdown: "Dateline: January 2014. Federal government shuts down completely.
"Day 1. Mall, Washington, D.C., Park Police decide shutdown again requires barring access to war memorials and the grounds of the Washington, Lincoln and Jefferson monuments. Veterans rise up in anger and push back barricades. 'If you're furloughed, how can you keep us from entering the parks?' asks Joe Laploski, an Iraqi veteran from New Rochelle, N.Y. Park Police assign unpaid legal interns to determine whether Park Police should arrest themselves for working.
"Day 2. White House. In hastily called press conference, President Obama announces major plan to deal with the national emergency. Enforcement on malls will be sustained, lest someone fall in the Tidal Basin and sue the government. Government debt will thereby be reduced, since Park Police cost less than those future lawsuits, at least on an expected basis.
"Day 3. Capitol. Lights go out. Speaker Boehner lost underground. Democrats offer to fund search party, but, invoking the Hastert rule (requiring agreement by a majority of the majority party to act) and unable to decide whether they want to find him, Tea Party refuses.
"Day 4 ...
Arguing about alcohol in Pa.
Keystone Politics: "We don't have an Independent Fiscal Office score of the alcohol reform bill yet, leaving a vacuum that both sides are trying to fill with politicized predictions about the impact on the budget. The pro-cartel side thinks it'll leave anywhere from a $100 million hole (at their most honest) to a $500 million hole (at their most dishonest).
"The pro-consumer side thinks it'll raise revenue on net, which I think is quite possible from all the additional license sales, income taxes, sales taxes and property taxes from expanding this market. But the fact is that we still don't know and everybody's basically just making stuff up at this point, based on how they feel about the general merits of the idea.
"I think it's not a good idea for the pro-consumer side to lead with more revenue as a selling point, because it may turn out that IFO says this loses a bit of money in the short run. And if that happens, we need to be prepared to argue that alcohol reform is worth doing anyway ... This is worth doing because it's a better deal for consumers and for the economy, not only because we think it'll raise more money for public services."
What about Benghazi?
The Borowitz Report (satire alert!) recalled the 11th-hour debate last week about the government shutdown, in particular Sen. Rand Paul's proposal to reopen "just enough of the government to hold new hearings on Benghazi":
" 'Across this great nation of ours, people are suffering,' " he told Fox News's Megyn Kelly. 'Suffering, Megyn, because they still don't know what really happened in Benghazi.'
"Noting that the government shutdown had furloughed investigators who could be looking into Benghazi, he said, 'If there's something in our government more worthy of funding than that, I can't think of it. ... It's time to stop the madness.' "
Shut it down again!
From Newsmax: "Sen. Ted Cruz hinted in an ABC News interview Thursday that another government shutdown isn't off the table and fellow Texan Tom DeLay agrees with him. 'If that's what it takes to stand on principle and win, yes. Absolutely,' Former House Speaker DeLay told CNN's Anderson Cooper.
" 'There's a movement out here in the real world,' DeLay said. 'People are desperate to stop this runaway federal spending. They're desperate to get rid of Obamacare.' "
Greg Victor (email@example.com). First Published October 19, 2013 8:00 PM