Archive for the ‘Boehner’ Category

Congressional Republicans Still Struggle, Differ on Budget

March 28, 2009

Even before Barack Obama double-dared them to cough up their own budget, House Republican leaders were quietly drafting a set of conservative budget principles to convince voters – and their own rank-and-file – that they aren’t just The Party of No.

Minority Leader John Boehner, Minority Whip Eric Cantor, GOP Conference Chairman Mike Pence and Rep. Paul Ryan worked for weeks on a plan, staffers say, without any serious philosophical disagreements.

By &
Politico

But over time, Cantor-Ryan and Boehner-Pence camps split over questions of tactics and timing.

Pence, with Boehner’s blessing, wanted to unveil an abbreviated “blueprint” Thursday to counter Obama’s criticism and arm members with new talking points heading into this weekend – even if it meant that their plan wouldn’t have much in the way of details.

Cantor and Ryan wanted to wait until Ryan’s staff produced a fully-fleshed-out alternative to Obama’s $3.6 trillion spending plan, with specific numbers on spending and tax cuts – even if it meant waiting a few more days to get it out.

Cantor and Ryan ultimately caved in, and what they got was the worst of both worlds: a thin, glossy “blueprint” that was ridiculed by Democrats and cable news anchors, and a nasty internecine scrap that culminated with one GOP aide telling POLITICO that Pence had thrown Ryan “under the bus” in an “egocentric rush” to grab the spotlight.

Privately, some Republicans are worried that the split over the budget blueprint portends the kind of internal squabbling that afflicted the party during the height of its power at the beginning of the Bush administration.

“It was an unmitigated disaster,” said one House GOP aide of the Thursday roll-out. “We’ve got to figure out why this happened — and fix things fast.”

Thursday’s four-car pile-up wasn’t the first for the four GOP leaders. Six weeks ago, they were able to hold their conference together in two unanimous votes against the Democrats’ $787 billion stimulus package six weeks ago. But last week, the Boehner-Pence and Cantor-Ryan camps split publicly over publicly over the Democratic bill imposing a 90 percent tax on bonuses paid to executives at AIG and other bailed-out firms.

Read the rest:
http://www.politico.com/news/stori
es/0309/20577.html

******************

From CNN

Despite crushing defeats in the last two elections, Senate Republicans have new “energy and enthusiasm” for winning back the majority, according to their leader, Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky.

“President Bush had become extremely unpopular, and politically he was sort of a millstone around our necks in both ’06 and ’08,” McConnell told reporters Friday. “We now have the opportunity to be on offense, offer our own ideas and we will win some.”

Many of those ideas get presented as amendments to Democratic bills, and even though they’re usually defeated, they can draw attention to GOP policy alternatives and force Democrats to take difficult votes.

“They become the way you chart the course for a comeback, which, in this country, always happens at some point,” McConnell said. “The pendulum swings.”

McConnell said many of the ideas for amendments come from conservative think tanks and other Republican thinkers off Capitol Hill.

“Newt Gingrich, for example, has an idea a minute. Many of those are quite good. Many of those become amendments,” he said.

McConnell also said he doesn’t mind the “party of no” label Congressional Democrats and the White House give Republicans.

Read the rest:
http://edition.cnn.com/2009/POLITIC
S/03/27/gop.comeback/index.html

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AIG Bonus Caper Demonstrates Obama Administration Weak Thinking

March 17, 2009

President Obama’s apparent inability to block executive bonuses at insurance giant AIG has dealt a sharp blow to his young administration and is threatening to derail both public and congressional support for his ambitious political agenda.

By Michael D. Shear and Paul Kane
The Washington Post
Politicians in both parties flocked to express outrage over $165 million in bonuses paid out to executives at the company, demanding answers from the president and swamping yesterday’s rollout of his efforts to spark lending to small businesses.

The populist anger at the executives who ran their firms into the ground is increasingly blowing back on Obama, whom aides yesterday described as having little recourse in the face of legal contracts that guaranteed those bonuses.

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs, peppered with questions about why the president had not done more to block the bonuses at a company that has received $170 billion in taxpayer funds, struggled for an answer yesterday afternoon. He explained that government lawyers are “looking through contracts to see what can be done to wrest these bonuses from their recipients.”

Obama himself sought to channel the public’s sense of disbelief yesterday. “How do they justify this outrage to the taxpayers who are keeping the company afloat?” he said, declaring the bonuses an “outrage” that violate “fundamental values.”
White House aides grasped for actions that could soothe sentiment on Main Street and in the halls of Congress, where the fate of the new president’s sweeping agendas on health care, climate change and education will be decided. They suggested that the government will use its latest pledged installment of $30 billion for the ailing company to recover the millions in bonuses paid Friday.

But the damage control did not seem to satisfy incredulous lawmakers in both parties, who said the image of financial executives taking huge bonuses from a taxpayer-funded rescue puts the president in a politically impossible position.

“I warned them this would be met with an unprecedented level of outrage,”  Sen. Christopher J. Dodd (D-Conn.), the chairman of the banking committee and part of a group of senators who pressed Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner to stop the bonuses, said yesterday.

House  Minority Leader John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) said the bonus issue added to his belief that there will be almost no Republican support for any expansion of a bank-bailout program that passed Congress last fall with broad bipartisan support.

“What is the government’s exit strategy from this sweeping involvement in private business?” he asked in a statement, adding that “taxpayers are not receiving an adequate accounting from either the Treasury or the management of the companies that received taxpayer funds. Unfortunately, we have not yet seen such a plan.”

The rhetoric grew so heated yesterday that  Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa) suggested in a radio interview that AIG executives ought to “follow the Japanese model . . . resign, or go commit suicide.” An aide later explained he does not actually want executives to kill themselves.

More than 80 House Democrats signed a letter demanding that the money used to pay the bonuses be recouped from AIG. New York Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo announced that he will subpoena the Manhattan-based company, seeking data documenting who received the bonuses and the justification for them.

Read the rest:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/cont
ent/article/2009/03/16/AR200903160064
0.html?hpid=topnews

Related:
Why Taxpayers Should Pay the AIG Bonuses; Obama is Dead Wrong On This

Households, Businesses Have Stopped Spending; Now It’s Congressional Responsibility Time

March 6, 2009

Here is the top economic news today:

–Unemployment reached a level not seen since 1983.

–The stock market hasn’t been this low since 1997.

–The Senate refused the president’s $410 billion omnibus spending bill last night, necessitating a continuing resolution at last year’s spending levels, at least until the omnibus can be reconsidered next week.

–The Republican Leader in the House, John Boehner, has called for a government spending freeze.

–The head of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) has warned that the fund insuring Americans’ bank deposits could be wiped out this year without the money the agency is seeking in new fees from U.S. banks and thrifts.

–The Treasury Secretary’s pick as his number one deputy withdrew her name from consideration last night.  The top 17 senior posts at Treasury are vacant with no names announced to fill those posts.  A Senate hearing was cancelled yesterday because Treasury could not cough up a reporesentative for the hearing.  And as for Mr. Geithner himself, Warren E. Buffett has said: “Beware of geeks bearing formulas.”

–A Record 31.8 million Americans now get food stamps.

http://money.cnn.com/2009/03/05/ne
ws/economy/foodstamps.reut/index.ht
m?section=money_latest

Worried now?  I am.  especially since President Barack Obama wants to spend untold trillions still: on health care, bank bailouts, foreclosure and mortagage subsidies, a conversion of the nation’s energy system from oil, gas and coal to wind and magic, and still more.

The president already has said mean things about the engine drivers of the American economy, and made it clear he intends to raise their taxes and cut their perks and pay.  Consequently they have decided to invest less and hire fewer worker.  You would have done the same.

All homeowners will lose some of their mortgage interest tax deduction under the Obama plan: a strange idea during a housing crisis.

And we can all expect to pay more for everything when this huge debt we are developing turns into the likely ugly dragon of inflation.  Add to that oil and gas prices which will likely rise with OPECs help and the president’s “cap and trade” idea for energy and carbon limits and PRESTO: we could have a real economic meltdown.

I’m with Republicans in the House and Senate: this is a good time to kill the 9,000 earmarks contained in the omnimbus and settle for a continuing resolution to finish out this year.

Related:

WASHINGTON (AP) — The top Republican in the House is seizing on the latest spike in unemployment to call for a freeze on government spending and to urge President Barack Obama to veto a $410 billion spending bill.

Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, said the jump in unemployment to 8.1 percent and the loss of 651,000 jobs in February is a sign of a worsening recession that demands better solutions from both parties.

Boehner criticized the spending bill as chocked full of wasteful, pork-barrel projects. The Senate postponed a vote on the bill until Monday amid the criticism.

Boehner said he hoped Obama would veto the bill. He urged the president to work with House Republicans to impose a spending freeze until the end of this fiscal year.

More Related:
http://michellemalkin.com/2009/03/06/hou
se-republicans-push-for-spending-freeze/

******
WASHINGTON – The head of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. has warned that the fund insuring Americans’ bank deposits could be wiped out this year without the money the agency is seeking in new fees from U.S. banks and thrifts.

FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair acknowledged, in a letter to bank CEOs, that the new increased fees and hefty emergency premium the agency voted to levy last week will bring a “significant expense” to banks, especially amid a recession and financial crisis when their earnings are under pressure.

“We also recognize that assessments reduce the funds that banks can lend in their communities to help revitalize the economy,” Bair wrote.

But given the accelerating bank failures that have been depleting the deposit insurance fund, she said, it “could become insolvent this year.”

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/200903
04/ap_on_bi_ge/fdic_bank_fund_w
arning

*****

Senate Banking Committee Chairman Christopher Dodd is moving to allow the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. to temporarily borrow as much as $500 billion from the Treasury Department.

The Connecticut Democrat’s effort — which comes in response to urging from FDIC Chairman Sheila Bair, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner — would give the FDIC access to more money to rebuild its fund that insures consumers’ deposits, which have been hard hit by a string of bank failures.

Read the rest from The Wall Street Journal:
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1236
30125365247061.html

Related:
Unemployment Highest Since 1983; Business Leaders Have No Confidence in Obama Economic Plan, Team

American Workers, Businesses Cut Back; Obama Launches Spending Spree
.
Presidency of Fear

Obama’s Brazen Deception: Why The Stock Market Won’t Recover Soon

 Senate Halts Obama Spending; At Least For The Week End

 Obama plan to prevent foreclosures won’t help many California homeowners

“People that create American wealth are going on strike”

Obama’s Economic Strategy Akin To LBJ’s Vietnam Fiasco: “Pour In More”

Stimulus struggle hints at a party showdown

February 15, 2009
Republicans and Democrats each held a firm line, foreshadowing tougher struggles ahead.
By Janet Hook
Los Angeles Times
February 15, 2009
Reporting from Washington — The monthlong struggle over the stimulus plan left behind a smoking battlefield of partisanship, but it also set the stage for a political collision on a scale seldom seen in Washington — a showdown on a succession of even more divisive issues that could shadow the future of the two major parties.

Against the background of the worst economic crisis in three-quarters of a century, Congress passed the $787-billion economic recovery bill without a single GOP vote in the House, and only three Republican votes in the Senate, the bare minimum to avoid a paralyzing filibuster. Economists across the political spectrum widely agree that some sort of federal action on an unprecedented scale is urgently needed.

Read the rest:
http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld
/nation/la-na-stimulus-collision15-2009feb
15,0,7978244.story

People Really Do Hate Republicans:
http://suzieqq.wordpress.com/2009/02/1
5/do-people-really-hate-republicans-in-congress/

Obama Respects Afghans More Than Americans

February 15, 2009

Earth shaking news today that Pressident Barack Obama has honored President Hamid Karzai’s request for Afghanistan’s official representation in the strategic review on the future of the U.S. and Afghanistan.

Karsai may have gotten the idea from U.S. Chaiman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen who has an Op-Ed in today’s Washington Post under the headline “Trust is the Coin of the Realm.”

Trust is the coin of the realm

 Obama Team Gloats: Winning isn’t everything; it’s the only thing

Too bad there was no such effort to involve Republicans in the formulation of the “strategic review” that built the just passed economic stimulus.

That’s because by most accounts, there was no real strategic review on the future of the American economy and what to do next by Team Obama, that we know about, for sure, even given the pledge on “transparency;” and the Republican involvement in the formulation of the stimulus was only given lip service.

We write this fittingly on Valentine’s Day; a day that is often charged with lip service.

Note to President Obama: Congressional Republicans represent something like 47% of the American voter population that voted for the other guy.

In Kabul, Afghanistan, U.S. Special Envoy Richard Holbrooke said President Obama welcomed President Karzai’s recommendation for his side’s total involvment in the U.S. planning effort.

Karzai said his foreign minister, Dadfar Rangin Spanta, would head the delegation.

Memo to Dadfar Rangin Spanta: when you meet Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid you are in trouble.  The “strategic review” is finished, if the stimulus is any guide.

Now maybe the White House, which honored Republicans before the vote on the stimulus with photo opportunity meetings with the president, a cocktail party, a Super Bowl feed complete with peanuts, and not one actual working group of real substance at the White House, Old Executive (excuse me, I’m old: Eisenhower) Office Building, or in the House or the Senate Office Buildings — will send a special envoy to meet Republicans.

I mean, there is a special envoy to the Middle East, isn’t there?  To Afghanistan?  Even Susan Rice, Ambassador to the U.N. is now said to have Cabinet Rank?

Where’s the outreach to Repubicans — and their 47% of the electorate — that has productive intention, real merit, and invites seriously serious input?

Real outreach to Republicans doesn’t exist and hasn’t yet in this presidency.

Trust is not the coin of this realm.

Let’s see: we need a White House special envoy to Republicans.  We are just thinking of guys that won’t be laughed at or ridiculed by say Mitch McConnell, John Boehner, John McCain, or talking heads like Karl Rove  and Charles Krauthammer.

How about  Rahm Emanuel or Jimmy Carter? 

No, maybe not.

Trust is not the coin of Rahm. Ask Judd Gregg.

And Afghanistan should know that the “bipartisanship” they really seek is not the kind of bipolar treatment that Democrats just gave Republicans during the stimulus enema. 

Hint to White House: you don’t need a special envoy to Rush Limbaugh.  Republicans only like him for his entertainment value….

But maybe the president himself could still be the special envoy to Republicans in the spirit of trust and bipartisanship?

Maybe not.

The president’s record on “outrach” and  bipartisanship to Republicans, and trasparency, so far, I mean during the stimulus, is like purchased sex with a working girl; it is sleezy and meaningless.  Maybe he needs some chachki toys or aluminum key chains with little hand painted “Air Force One” or “White House” gimmicks or the presidential Great Seal.  You know, creations to hand out to Republicans…..  Or maybe a little yellow tractor from Caterpillar on a key chain….  Or Abe Lincoln to remind one of two great presidents….

Karzai: watch out.  It’s not just the Taliban that will keep you awake with worry about trust.

If you get peanuts at the White House watch out.  And don’t be surprised….

John E. Carey
Wakefield Chapel, Virginia

Related:
Missing from Congress’ stimulus negotiations: transparency

Afghanistan to take part in US strategic review

 Stimulus Proves Obama (And The NYT) Have No Idea What “Bipartisanship” Means; Or Could Care Less

 Stimulus: “Obama is popular but has no clout”

http://michellemalkin.com/2009/02/15/tax
payer-revolt-porkulus-protest-in-seattle/

economic stimulus bill will prevent American 'catastrophe'

Photo: AP
Afghan President Hamid Karzai (R) talks with U.S. Special Representative ...

Afghan President Hamid Karzai (R) talks with U.S. Special Representative to Pakistan and Afghanistan Richard Holbrooke in Kabul February 15, 2009.REUTERS/Omar Sobhani (AFGHANISTAN)
Heavy reading 

Psst: Karzai.  If this is your agreement at the end of the ‘strategic review’ and you get it just before decision time, BEND OVER. House GOP leader John Boehner shows a copy of the massive bill, which he and every other Republican in the House opposed, along with seven Democrats. Photo: Mark Wilson / Getty Images

Incoming White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel gestures prior ... 
Special envoy material….. Trust is the coin….Leadership, bipartisanship, transparency, honesty, integrity and clout?  Incoming White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel gestures prior to the inauguration ceremony of Barack Obama as the 44th President of the United States, in Washington, January 20, 2009.(Jim Young – UNITED STATES/Reuters)

House Votes Stimulus: 7 Dems, All Republicans Against

February 13, 2009

Seven Democratic Members of the House of representatives and all Republican House members voted against the Obama economic stimulus today.

Obama Dead Wrong On Stimulus in Peoria, Caterpillar Remarks

Eleven Democratic members of the House voted against the stimulus in the previous vote.

“This is a bad bill; it won’t stimulate jobs and revive the economy, it only adds spending and debt,” said one senior Republican.

President Obama said the  stimulus “will ignite recovery.”

Well, that depends upon what your mean by “ignite,” most analysts say.

It will probaably take more than one year to see any stimulative impact, economists predict.

The Republicans must have put some pressure on House members such as Joseph Cao from Louisiana, who said they might vote with the Democrats on the stimulus….No Republicans joined the Democrats in the stimulus vote….

http://www.wdsu.com/money/18
703530/detail.html

Senator Lindsey Graham called the bill “an orgy of public spending.”

developing……

************

By ANDREW TAYLOR, Associated Press Writer

The bill was passed 246-183 with no Republican help. It now goes to the Senate where a vote was possible late Friday to meet a deadline of passing the plan before a recess begins next week.

All but seven Democrats voted for the bill — a 1,071 page, 8-inch-thick measure that combines $281 billion in tax cuts for individuals and businesses with more than a half-trillion dollars in government spending. The money would go for infrastructure, health care and help for cash-starved state governments, among scores of programs. Seniors would get a $250 bonus Social Security check.

Obama claims the plan will save or create 3.5 million jobs, but Republicans said it won’t work because it has too little in tax cuts and spreads too much money around to everyday projects like computer upgrades for federal agencies.

“This legislation falls woefully short,” said House GOP Leader John Boehner of Ohio. “With a price tag of more than $1 trillion when you factor in interest, it costs every family almost $10,000 in added debt. This is an act of generational theft that our children and grandchildren will be paying for far into the future.”

……

“This measure is not bipartisan. It contains much that is not stimulative,” said Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., Obama’s rival for the White House. “And is nothing short — nothing short — of generational theft” since it burdens future generations with so much debt, he added.

Read the rest:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/200902
13/ap_on_bi_ge/congress_stimulus

Michelle:
http://michellemalkin.com/2009/0
2/13/where-in-the-world-142/

*******

From ABC News
“This debate is coming to an end and it really never started,” complained Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., referring to the short amount of time they had to review the bill, which was only posted around 11 p.m. Thursday.

Speaking to reporters after House voted, an exultant House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., hailed the passage of the stimulus as “transformational for our country.” Surrounded by her Democratic colleagues, Pelosi thanked Obama for his efforts in the stimulus bill.

“He did something faster than any other president in history. … I salute him for his leadership,” Pelosi said.

Instead of voting for the gargantuan package of tax cuts and public works spending, key Republicans made last ditch speeches denouncing the bill. Seven Democrats also voted against it.

“It’s disappointing the way this process has worked, and the outcome,” House Minority Leader John Boehner, waving the bulky report in his hands, said on the House floor before the vote. “Bad process leads to bad policy and that’s what we have in my view. … I hope it works but I surely have my doubts. … This is the epitome of what I came here to stop.”

“I’m going to vote no and I’m going to hope that next time. … You’ll include us and you’ll include our ideas,” the Ohio Republican said, clearly addressing Democratic leaders.

Many Republicans consider the fight over stimulus to be lost.

Rep. Aaron Schock, R-Ill., who represents the town of Peoria, Ill., where the president touted the stimulus Thursday, said employees from Caterpillar asked him to oppose the bill.

Read it all:
http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/Busin
ess/story?id=6870873&page=1

Now House-Senate Must Settle Stimulus

February 10, 2009

The Senate passed the stimulus today and now a House-Senate committee meets to finalize the bill.
“There is no reason we can’t do this by the end of the week,” said Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada. He said he was prepared to hold the Senate in session into the Presidents Day weekend if necessary, and cautioned Republicans not to try and delay final progress.

He said passage would mark “the first step on the long road to recovery.”

Moments before the vote, the Congressional Budget Office issued a new estimate that put the cost at $838 billion, an increase from the $827 billion figure from last week.

“This bill has the votes to pass. We know that,” conceded Sen. John Thune, a South Dakota Republican who has spoken daily in the Senate against the legislation.

Even so, in the hours before Monday’s vote, Republican opponents attacked it as too costly and unlikely to have the desired effect on the economy. “This is a spending bill, not a stimulus bill,” said Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn.

House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH):

“The fact is, this trillion-dollar spending plan is not much different than the one House Democrats passed two weeks ago.  It is more costly, is loaded with slow-moving Washington spending, opens the door to scores of pet projects that taxpayers cannot afford, and is not focused on creating more jobs for families and small businesses. Even worse, its authors are trying to take advantage of the crisis in our economy to enact a series of liberal policy proposals that have nothing to do with job creation, such as reversing welfare reform and letting government ration out health care options to America families and seniors.”

Senator Chuck Schumer: “Americans don’t care.”
Video:
Schumer Says Americans Don’t Care About Pork Spending

Eugene Robinson in the Washington Post:
“Republicans just don’t like this bill.” 

This bill is the issue: it has a lot of spending, as Leader Boehner suggests, that is not going to help….

But the president seemed to say last night that the time for bipartisanship is over.

So we get the House-Senate compromise.  Swallow.

Stimulus: Democrats Exhibit Zero Convicing Arguments, Spokesmen

February 8, 2009

“This isn’t about my personality. This isn’t about anybody’s personality.”
.
So said Larry Summers on Fox News Sunday.

While it was clear he didn’t have the personality to be an effective spokesman for Barack Obama on anything, he also seemed unable to explain why this stimulus is so absolutely necessary. 
In this photo provided by FOX News, Larry Summers, chairman of the White House National Economic Council, appears on ‘Fox News Sunday’ in Washington, Sunday, Feb. 8, 2009. (AP Photo/FOX News Sunday, Freddie Lee)

In this photo provided by FOX News, Larry Summers, chairman ...

After the statement, “without this stimulus we’ll have economic catastrophe,” please someone tell us what is so good about this stimulus?

Last Thursday afternoon I would have said Barack Obama was his own best spokesman to “sell” this stimulus to the American people.

But on Thursday night he went to a spa in Williamsburg, Virginia and gave an ugly, partisan attack on Republicans; not a bipartisan urge for American to unite in times of economic crisis.

And nobody on the Democrat side has given anything close to a line by line defense of this stimulus.

And this has hurt Barack Obama and his presidency much more than the flawed vetting process that brought us tax scofflaws like Tom Daschle.

“It shrinks his presidency,” said former Republican Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich Friday at the American Enterprise Institute. “I thought last night’s speech in Williamsburg actually was a lot more like Carter and a long way from Reagan.”

Historian Gingrich said Friday, “Reagan would never have allowed himself that level of partisanship and that kind of aggressiveness in that kind of setting.  So you could either have a strategy that says, ‘I’m going to go over and I’m going to be bipartisan and I’m going to prove it and here’s how I’m going to it. In which he case he wouldn’t have gone down last night. He would, in fact, have invited Pelosi and Boehner and he would have invited Reid and McConnell down to the White House to collectively hammer out the bipartisan compromise. That’s one strategy. Or there’s the strategy … that’s perfectly reasonable, that says, ‘I won, we won and we’re running over you but we’re going to deliver. … What he’s doing now is Carter-ism because he’s trying to live out both strategies and you gotta figure out which morning it is by which strategy he’s using today. And what that will do is totally clutter who he is.”

On Sunday, Gingrich recommended that the president leave his campaign-style anger at home during his stimulus sales trip this week.

Gingrich wasn’t the only one critical of the president on leadership last week.  Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said the preident was AWOL (Absent Without Official Leave) on the stimulus — and yesterday that earned him a rebuke in the senate that sounded a lot like gay bashing.

If the president has lost his ability to “sell” the stimulus; who can do the job?

Nancy Pelosi?  She’s largely seen as an over the top partisan Democrat — and the single person most responsible for the waste (read pork) in the stimulus.

Governors and mayors?  They just want the money and care nothing about the down-side of debt, inflation and the rest.

Harry Reid?  He has largely stayed out of any national leadership role on this, preferring, apparently, to manage the president’s agenda in the senate.

Larry Summers?  I saw him on the Sunday morning talk shows and thought he was a very lame spokesperson.

Didn’t pay his taxes Geithner?  He seems to be laying low.  He’s working on TARP II “Son Of Tarp.”

So with about 50% of the nation’s voters now turning against the stimulus, President Obama will continue his “Catastrophe Cavalcade” outside Washington and on the road this week.

White House spokesman Robert Gibbs said Obama would travel to Elkhart, Indiana, on Monday for a town hall meeting on the stimulus bill before holding a White House news conference on Monday night.

Elkhart is where many American recreational vehicles are made — and in hard economic times many people just won’t buy a new RV.

Obama will be in Fort Myers, Florida this Tuesday — in an area with the nation’s highest foreclosure rate.

Meanwhile, the less photogenic Republican leaders, it seemed to me, made a lot of sense and a lot of good points.

Republican Senator Jeff Sessions said it would cost some $40 billion a year just to service the additional debt that resulted from the spending portions of the bill.

“How big is $40 billion? That’s the annual road budget, the annual highway budget for the United States of America. That’s a lot of money,” Sessions said.

If this stimulus is so great, and the House and the Senate are both dominated by articulate Democrats, how come Democrats can’t make better arguments and put forward better spokesmen for this stimulus?

Related:
Obama Economic Chief: House, Senate Stimulus Chasm Still Means Trouble

Stimulus? Senator Unleashes “Gay Insult” During Debate Tongue-Lashing

Obama, Dems Go To a Spa After Tough First Weeks But No Stimulus

 Senator Critical Of President for Not Leading on Stimulus; Calls Effort “Crazy,” Bill “Monstrosity”

Michelle Malkin:
http://michellemalkin.com/2009/02/07/burnin
g-the-midnight-oil-the-sellout-amendment-is-here/

http://imthenimrod.wordpress.com/2009/02/0
8/barack-obama-stubborn-arrogance/

http://www.righttruth.typepad.com/

What did the Senate cut from the stimulus?
http://www.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/02/0
7/stimulus.cuts/index.html

 Pelosi Calls Bipartisanship Unnecessary

Transcript:
Larry Summers on Fox News Sunday
http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,29
33,489742,00.html

Obama Was Cheated: House Stimulus a Nancy Pelosi Crime

February 5, 2009

The newly inaugurated President of the United States declared a national crisis.  He wanted an economic stimulus and he wanted it fast.

His mantra was jobs.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi was ready with every hunk of junk pork spending that no Congress before had ever seen fit to pass.

She assembled a group of her Democratic staff and Representatives and put together a one-way Democrat spending bill — not a stimulus.

And she totally ignored the president’s pledge for bipartisanship.

House Minority Leader John Boehner and Republicans were completely shut out; their inputs ignored or overruled.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and House Majority Leader ... 
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer speak to reporters after a bi-partisan meeting with President Barack Obama and leading Republicans at the White House, January 23, 2009.(Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

When the House prepared to vote on the stimulus, Boehner expressed “disappointment.” He said it included a “lot of wasteful spending that won’t create jobs.”

“Saying ‘we won’ and excluding Republican input is not the way to start,” Republican Senator John McCain said of the “bipartisanship” within the current stimulus bill.

The Speaker of the House also participated in a conspiracy that resulted in the failure of the stimulus to be properly understood.  It was not even available in the Internet in time to be publically read before the House vote.

Democratic House Member Jim Cooper from Tennessee said, “If members actually had to read the bills and figure out whether they are any good or not. We’re just told how to vote. We’re treated like mushrooms most of the time.”

“We’ll be glad to sit down with the White House any time,” McCain said.  “We’re in a national crisis.”

Thank goodness for the Senators.

Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) said today, “It doesn’t treat the disease; just the symptoms.” 

He’s a doctor.

Coburn also said of the stimulus bill, “I don’t think the president has read it.”

Coburn said the stimulus will probably pass “but it won’t work, it won’t be successful.”

Now some 43% of the voters say the stimulus is wrong; and only 37% of those polled like it.

At this point McCain says,  “no bill is better than this bill.”
.
He and other Republicans have an alternative to the House stimulus that they have already discussed with President Obama.

We pray President Obama has the good sense to work with McCain and others to make an acceptable stimulus — something he has always pledged to do.

And we hope President Obama has learned a lesson about Nancy Pelosi and her House Democrats.

Related:
House Stimulus Has Anti-Prayer, Religion Provisions?

Mayors, Governors of Both Parties Favor Stimulus (Surprised?)

 Stimulus: Some Loony Spending Requests in Obama Plan

Flaws of Stimulus More Obvious Each Day
.
Senate Votes “Softened” “Buy American” Section in Stimulus

Michelle Malkin:
http://michellemalkin.com/2009/02/04/nan
cy-pelosi-company-yuk-it-up-while-stimulus-
becomes-a-national-joke/

Stimulus Congress

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi listens to National Governors Association chairman Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell, second from right, during a meeting with National Governors Association vice chairman Vermont Gov. Jim Douglas, left, and Rep. George Miller, D-Calif., right, on Capitol Hill. Photo: Susan Walsh / AP

http://hotair.com/archives/2009/02/04/h
as-obama-gone-to-war-with-nancy-pelosi/

Obama’s stimulus doesn’t work for me

January 28, 2009

Republicans insisted Wednesday that their own economic stimulus plan, focusing on tax relief, would create twice as many new jobs – 6.2 million – as the plan Obama is pushing, while costing about half as much.

As a business owner, here’s how I see the economy.

“We” Americans got where we are by spending too much money we didn’t have.  Now “we” as a nation propose to spend even more to get out of this box.

It makes no sense to me.

There are real dangers in inflation, loss of value in the dollar and other ills with such a huge debt — much of it owned by China.  And China may resist buying even more….

I can’t hire or buy more equipment or inventory becaue I have no certainty that the economy will improve for, oh, say three years.

The spending I see in the stimulus won’t do anything for me; unless maybe I can get some free condoms at family services.

The Republican idea of tax cuts would at least allow me to plan my budget for a year or two.

Whatever plan can really make jobs is a good idea: but we have to have lasting jobs and not just hire every Spanish speaking guy at the 7-11 so he can fix roads.  He’ll send a lot of that pay home to somewhere else…

And the speed we’ve decided is necessary for the lawmaking associated with the stimulus has never before yielded good law….

****

(AP) 

House Republican leaders are standing firm in their opposition to the stimulus plan that President Barack Obama is asking Congress to approve.

Just ahead of a House vote that they’re expected to lose along party lines, Republicans insisted Wednesday that their own plan, focusing on tax relief, would create twice as many new jobs – 6.2 million – as the plan Obama is pushing, while costing about half as much.

House Minority Leader John Boehner said Republicans remain “disappointed” in the stimulus plan coming to a vote. He says it includes a “lot of wasteful spending that won’t create jobs.”

He says the GOP plan for “fast-acting tax relief” would “create jobs and preserve jobs in America.”