John Boehner’s ‘Counter Offer’ is an Insulting Joke on America

Last updated on February 8th, 2013 at 01:52 am

While the President was engaging with people on twitter, John Boehner was writing up the GOP’s Christmas list for Santa Claus and had the gall to call it a “counter offer.”

In his letter Boehner claimed that Obama’s proposal wasn’t balanced and realistic, “We cannot in good conscience agree to this approach, which is neither balanced nor realistic. If we were to take your Administration’s proposal at face value, then we would counter with the House-passed Budget Resolution. It assumes an overhaul of our tax code with revenue remaining at historically normal levels and proposes structural reforms to preserve and protect the Nation’s entitlement programs, ensuring they are sustainable for the long-term rather than continuing to grow out of control. ”

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According to Boehner’s letter to the President he has a set of “new” proposals that include cuts to medicare, block funding medicaid, cutting SNAP and pay cuts for Federal Employees.  As for revenues, the extent of Boehner’s  so called counter proposal is a repetition of the claim that closing unspecified loop holes will solve our problems.

Sounds familiar, right?  We heard it from Mitt Romney, saw it in Paul Ryan’s budgets, and heard it from Boehner when sharing his wish list in 2011. We tried it under Bush. Ok, time to be fair.  The President’s approach isn’t highly original either.  He’s adapting the Clinton approach as he promised he would before the election.

The differences between the Bush approach and the Clinton approach are stark.  Under Bush, we saw an economic meltdown, massive job losses and the only thing that was increasing was our deficit.  Under the Clinton approach, unemployment went down, our general wealth went up and we even balanced the budget.  Gee, I know which approach I would prefer.

In November, our response was to give the President a mandate for his approach, which proved successful when the Clinton administration tried it.  Not only were jobs created, but we even got a balanced budget.

The President proposed smart cuts to spending on Medicare, while  Boehner continues to call for a revised version of shifting the burden of healthcare costs to seniors (who by the way, would also have a lower real income if Boehner has his way.

On Medicaid, the only thing the Republican approach of block grants would create is more people without access to Medicaid.

He also calls for cuts to SNAP, meaning more hungry children. Boehner also dreams of cutting federal employees’ pay, but not his own. Where have we heard this before?

What part of this says “balanced approach?” In the final analysis, the revenue increases and cuts are born by the same people and those who would be unscathed by cuts to benefits and revenue increases are the wealthy.

Why can’t John Boehner understand that won by 1% of the population, even if they can “invest” $100 million plus in your campaign?

Aside from the $1 trillion in spending cuts the President already gave the GOP, Boehner wants more cuts to “entitlements” while preserving the Bush tax cuts for everyone.  But, when you look at his recycled ideas for increasing revenues, Boehner isn’t talking about the loopholes that allowed Mitt Romney to write off Ann’s horse as a business expense.  He’s talking about credits such as the mortgage deduction, deductions for charitable donations and other deductions that benefit those of us who the GOP deemed as members of the “underclass.”

As Steve Benen wrote on the Maddow Blog:

This isn’t a “counteroffer”; it’s a Christmas wish list written by kids without access to calculators.

Translation: It’s more of the same policies that Americans said no to in November. Boehner has added more arsenic to the brew and is trying to serve it to us again.  Remember how the GOP promised that this generation of seniors wouldn’t see cuts to their Medicare benefits?  Well, the GOP changed their minds about that. As Boehner stated in his letter, the bulk of the additional cuts he wants would come from Medicare, and he wants them right now.

As Think Progress reports, Republicans see this as merely a down payment.

Senator Michael D. Crapo, Republican of Idaho and another Gang of Six member, said some initial changes to entitlement programs could and should be in the down payment.

It’s pretty clear that the GOP hasn’t learned a thing from the election.  They still think that if they screw us over with the right gift wrapping, we’ll love the present.

They remain under the illusion that if they just use the right combination of weasel words for a proposal that has been rejected repeatedly, somehow we’ll fall for it.

You know what they say about people who try the same thing repeatedly, somehow expecting a different result…


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