Over at YidWithLid, Jeff Dunetz calls the bipartisan debt deal “a huge victory for the Conservative wing of the party.” He includes a lot of bullet points about the deal as well as the Speaker’s PowerPoint presentation offering details of the “Two-Step Approach” to hold the president “accountable,” contending that it cuts government spending more than it increases the debt limit. (H/t: Instapundit.)
Jennifer Rubin agrees with Dunetz that all “in all Republicans have much to crow about.”
I learned of the deal via CNN, having looked up from my cardio machine to see the “Breaking News.” I initially thought it was a bad deal, given how some commentator on the “news” network seemed to be gloating, but then they showed the president who didn’t seem too pleased, especially when he lashed out at those Republicans who prevented millionaires and billionaires from paying their fair share.
(Question for consideration: why does Obama feel the need to attack Republicans for this failure to increase taxes on some of the most productive in our society.)
I’ll just say I have mixed feelings about the deal. I don’t think Republicans should have given in to the president’s demand that they agree to extend to the debt limit through the 2012 campaign. If Ronald Reagan, as Obama claimed in his speech last week, raised the debt ceiling eighteen times, that means he did it, average, more than twice a year. Why shouldn’t a president who has lately (rhetorically at least) become so fond of the Gipper have to do it less often, only once in two years?
That said, before the deal was announced Michael Barone said Republicans had won because the fight was on our proverbial turf, “over cuts not more taxes.“ That is, while the deal is far from ideal, at least we’re no longer talking about federal “investments” (i.e., more government spending) but instead about cutting government spending.
In his pitch to House Republicans, Speaker Boehner concedes, “this isn’t the greatest deal in the world. But it shows how much we’ve changed the terms of the debate in this town.”
Conservatives may have won this battle rhetorically, but we’re still spending at a pace far above that of the Clinton years. The only way to make this deal work is for this and future Congresses to remain ever vigilant against the spendthrift ways of Washington politicians.
And to elect representatives and Senators willing to hold true to Reagan’s core principle, men and women who will work to reduce the size of the federal government.