Will Democrats Embrace a Foul Deal?

Washington, DC — In an article today Robert L. Borosage, co-director of the Campaign for America’s Future writes about news of a “foul deal” in the debt ceiling talks. He urges Democrats to, “draw an independent line in the sand. No deal without the rich and big corporations sharing in the sacrifice. No deal that takes more out of the programs for middle income and poor Americans than it takes from tax breaks, loopholes and havens for the rich and the big corporations. Stand up to the extortionists, do not accept their terms.”

Borosage writes, “Instead of insisting on a clean lift of the debt ceiling with no extortion, the White House is negotiating with extortionists willing to threaten to blow up the economy if they don’t get their way.
“Instead of insisting on a one-to-one ratio of spending cuts to top end tax hikes, the White House apparently accepts that spending cuts will be most of the deal, ratifying the utterly dishonest conservative claim that government spending is the problem.

“Instead of insisting that top end tax rates must be hiked, or demanding a millionaire’s tax at a time when the richest Americans are paying a lower effective tax rate than their chauffeurs, the White House now brags that it has embraced no tax rate hikes, it only wants to close egregious loopholes.

“The most vulnerable Americans will be forced to pay for the mess created by Wall Street’s excesses and Bush’s follies. If these guys were negotiating for the purchase of your next car, your first born might be at risk.

“Through this, Democrats have been silent.

“The deal probably can’t pass the House without Democratic votes but House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has been excluded from the negotiations. The deal can’t pass the Senate without the Democratic majority, but other than Senator Sanders, Democrats have said nothing, allowing Republicans to drive the debate.

“Republicans are in an utterly untenable position — but they seem confident that the president will cave. And given the history of the tax negotiations last December and these negotiations to date, it isn’t hard to imagine where they got that confidence.

“It is time for Democrats to assert their values.

“Democrats should draw an independent line in the sand. No deal without the rich and big corporations sharing in the sacrifice. No deal that takes more out of the programs for middle income and poor Americans than it takes from tax breaks, loopholes and havens for the rich and the big corporations. Stand up to the extortionists, do not accept their terms.

“The best outcome now would be for the President to say we agree that the deficit must be brought down, but cannot agree on how to get there. Republican willingness to blow up the economy to protect tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans precludes any deal. So accept the debt limits that Republicans voted for in their budget — that added $8 trillion in debt over the next 10 years. Lift the cap only to those levels — and let’s take the fight about how to get there to the American people in the elections, and let them decide how they want to exact the sacrifice.

“The Senate should bring a measure to lift the debt ceiling to the floor under those conditions. Let Republicans decide if they want to blow up the economy. It is time to call their bluff — for they are using extortion to achieve ends that are bad for the country, bad for the economy, utterly unjust, and massively unpopular.

“If Democrats allow them to get away with that, can anyone wonder why their supporters will be discouraged or disillusioned? It is time to stand up.”

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To read the article by Robert L. Borosage visit: http://www.ourfuture.org/blog-entry/2011072601/will-democrats-embrace-foul-deal