Watching the Sunday morning talk shows yesterday one thing became even more clear to me about the tax cut deal, by throwing a Supernanny-esque fit over Obama’s proposed tax cut deal the left has managed to take a winning debate and turn it on it’s head. Ever since the President announced the deal early last week Liberals decided to use the publicity they were handed to bash the President as weak and pound their chests as if trying to show how strongly they were opposed to tax cuts for the rich. They did this under the false assumption that the Democrats held the upper hand in these negotiations and emboldened by this false sense of security they continued to squander an entire weeks worth of media attention.
Fast forward to Sunday and this case was made clearly. On every one of the Sunday morning talk shows the moderators felt empowered to hammer their liberal guests over and over again on the issue. When the Republican guests were asked about the deal the theme was about how good of a deal they got. Republicans were allowed to make an unquestioned case for how Obama had “tacked to the center” and how this was sure to mean that he has “come full circle to endorse the Bush tax cuts.” But rather than even allow the left-leaning guests to challenge that point the questions to them revolved almost entirely around the tabloid type infighting on the left.
Now, with the tax cut deal set to pass the Senate what should be seen as a victory for the Democrats and in turn the American people is instead being framed as a Republican win. In effect the media is still focused on whether the “angry liberals” are going to continue to fight amongst themselves while the “pragmatic Republicans, emboldened by their ‘shellacking’ of the left in November” hold the upper hand in this debate. Worse yet, the conventional wisdom is that the Democrats are now ready to flip-flop on this issue – one they were so publicly enraged about last week – if it manages to pass the Senate strongly.
House aides said Democrats’ strategy in that chamber would be affected by the margin of the Senate vote.
“If you have 70 people in a bipartisan vote, I don’t see a situation where we really play that game of chicken and change [the bill],” said a senior aide to a House Democrat supporting the legislation.
Empowered by Jane Hamsher and the like, the supposedly Progressive wing of the Democratic party has managed to take a strong negotiated position of leadership and turn it into a carnival side-show. When will they learn?