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Dems Run Scared On Stimulus Package

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If Democrats can’t muster the courage to stand up now and fight for President Barack Obama’s fiscal stimulus package, then don’t expect them to fight for anything else during Obama’s presidency.

If the Democrats won’t fight, the wealthy will get richer, the middle class will lose more ground and the poor will suffer more over the next four years. More people will suffer and die needlessly so health insurance companies can make profits. There will be fewer jobs in the nation and fewer opportunities to go to college.  Retirement will be that quaint program of the past once championed by those weird liberals.

If Democrats won’t fight, they could lose big in the 2010 Congressional elections, and Obama might not be reelected in 2012.

The $820 billion fiscal stimulus package-trimmed to $780 billion at this point–will help this nation escape another Great Depression, and the U.S. Senate should pass it without any major changes from the House version. But Republicans oppose the bill. The bill, if anything, should spend more money, not less.  It will put people to work.  It will put billions of dollars directly back into the economy. Who cares what the obstructionist Republicans think? Their ideology of market fundamentalism has been soundly repudiated and soundly rejected.  They are the people who squandered former President Bill Clinton’s budget surplus. How dare a Congressional Republican even mention budget deficits after former President George Bush’s reign of fiscal terror.

Why can’t or won’t the Democratic politicians fight? Why are they scared?  It’s a sickening spectacle-it literally should make Democratic voters nauseated-to watch major Democratic leaders try to soothe the political egos of extremist Republicans as they remove this or that part of the package because it doesn’t fit with GOP ideology. They should stop now.  The Republicans aren’t interested in bipartisanship.  They never have been.  Who in their right mind would think the Republican Party, in its current form, believes in bipartisanship? Call for the vote. If the GOP and its Tom Coburns can stop the bill in the U.S. Senate, then so be it. If some turncoat Democrats want to join the GOP, then so be it. Real Democrats can then find ways to work around the immoral obstructionists and extremists that run the GOP these days. They can also find ways to get around those Republicans who pose as Democrats.

Here, for example, is U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid bland statement on the Republican obstructionism, according to a New York Times story:

“They cannot hold the president of the United States hostage,” Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the Democratic majority leader, said of Senate Republicans. “If they think they’re going to rewrite this bill and Barack Obama is going to walk away from what he is trying to do for the American people, they’ve got another thought coming.”

Scary, right?  I mean, ahem, another “thought coming.”  That’s downright frightening. No, no, no, not another “thought,” no, anything but that.

Here is Obama’s tough talk, according to The Boston Globe:

“We can’t delay and we can’t go back to the same worn-out ideas that led us here in the first place,” Obama said. “Let me be clear: those ideas have been tested, and they have failed.”

That’s true enough, but where’s the passion? His statement is, well, boring. It doesn’t resonate.  Where’s the clear sound bite that squarely blames GOP-influenced ideology for the mess we’re in on the economic front. The Democrats will never win the overall battle with Obama’s and Reid’s lukewarm rhetoric.  

Listen: The Republicans have a serious brand problem right now, and it’s not going to get better anytime soon. Democrats need to exploit it and win one for the people. Do they have the courage? Here are some sound bites Obama, Reid, and other Democratic leaders could use:

The Republican Party puts the interests of the ultra-wealthy above everyone else.  Its obstruction of the fiscal stimulus bill is just another example. The GOP position is fundamentally immoral and repugnant.

Let it be known that as people lost their homes and jobs in record numbers, the Republican Party clung to its own failed ideology and created massive suffering across this country. The damage the Republican Party has done to this country in recent years is incalculable.

The GOP is under the control of right-wing extremists and radicals who want to take away your economic freedom and security.

This Republican obstructionism tells us the GOP could care less about American losing their homes, jobs and health insurance.  It’s unpatriotic. It jeopardizes our way of life and our basic freedoms.

The Republicans will gladly ask you to serve in a war, but they could care less if you have a job or health care if you survive it.

The do-nothing Republicans are wasting time on wedge issues as Americans suffer the consequences of their failed policies.

Reid and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi need to tell these radical Republican obstructionists that Democrats will hold up every major piece of GOP-sponsored legislation presented in the House and Senate until a real stimulus package passes.

Anyone who supported Obama in his presidential bid should be disappointed that he, along with Congressional Democrats, won’t stand up and tell it like it is.  Why won’t Obama stand up and fight for the people who got him elected to office? Does he even care about his own bill? Why is he now betraying groups of people who rallied around his candidacy and got him elected by allowing the Republicans to gut his bill, humiliate him in his first days in office as an ineffective leader and then indicate they’re going to vote against his plan anyway?

Why do the Republicans get to win even though Democrats pretty much control the federal government right now?

Here is how it is: The Republicans are the reason the country faces such a dire financial crisis and now they stand in the way of a solution.  The Democrats, once again, cower and refuse to fight even though a clear majority of the nation and the vast majority of the world want them to stand up to the GOP extremists who have ruined the global economy. It’s the same old story.

Meanwhile right-wing hate radio and television is filled with the latest rant, which is Obama is a socialist, blah, blah, blah.  Is this what leading Democrats are worried about? Maybe they should turn off Rush Limbaugh and start listening to the people who elected them to office.

(Update 1: Is there a deal? The Washington Post reported Feb. 7 the U.S. Senate will probably pass the stimulus bill Tuesday. This came after Obama sharpened his rhetoric against the obstructionist Republicans, who have severely damaged this country’s economy by supporting the reckless fiscal policies of George Bush. But why the delay if the votes are in the bag?)

(Update 2: This is from Obama’s Saturday radio address to the country:

We can’t expect relief from the tired old theories that, in eight short years, doubled the national debt, threw our economy into a tailspin, and led us into this mess in the first place. We can’t rely on a losing formula that offers only tax cuts as the answer to all our problems while ignoring our fundamental economic challenges.

That’s almost exactly the right tone. I would suggest he refer to t
he Republican Party specifically in his attacks and use the names of GOP bigwigs who stood idly by as Bush destroyed the economy.)

(This was initially posted on Okie Funk.–Kurt Hochenauer)