RUSH: Dick Durbin was on Meet the Press yesterday, and they were talking about the economy and the sequester. David Gregory, the host, said to Dick Durbin (paraphrased), “Hey, buddy, how’s all this gonna end? You can tell me. Where does it end? How does it end? Tell me, Senator.”
DURBIN: Sequestration, uh, was designed as a budget threat, not as a budget strategy. And I think all of us understand if it goes forward in less than three weeks, its gonna have a dramatic negative impact on many agencies, equally important on the economy. So we need to come together. What the president’s proposing for the rest of this year at least is that we deal with the sequester the same way we have the first two months: Evenly split between revenue and cuts.
RUSH: Now, the argument about the sequester is being obscured as well. And Bob Woodward, if you need proof, Bob Woodward has the proof in one of his books. The sequester was an Obama idea. But as usual Obama is acting as though it’s a Republican idea that has him imprisoned, so to speak. It’s a dastardly trick that was played on him, and the Republicans are up to their usual tricks ’cause all they want to do is take things away from people. That’s all the Republicans ever want to do.
They want to take away your gay rights. They want to take away your gay marriage. They want to take away your food stamps. They want to take away your dog. They want to take away your Social Security. They want to take away your Medicare. They want to take away your health care. They want to take away your house. And sequestration is the dirty trick that they fooled Obama into agreeing with, and now that we’re about to get it, we can’t have it. Well, the fact of the matter is it was Obama’s idea. And one more time I’m gonna explain what it is.
A year-and-a-half ago there was another one of these phony, artificial crises because we’re about to reach the end of our limit of our ability to borrow money to pay for what we’ve spent, called the debt limit. And so we had to raise it. Well, the Republicans were saying, “Look, we gotta get some discipline here. We’re just spending money left and right that we don’t have. There’s got to be some limit.” So they wanted a promise of some spending cuts for Obama if they agreed to raise the debt limit, allowing to us borrow even more money. And the way those negotiations ended up was sequestration. “Okay, we’ll solve it,”but the debt limit’s gonna come up again in a year-and-a-half, everybody knew, and the next time it comes up, which is in March, if a deal isn’t struck, then what happens is sequestration.
Sequestration is about $1.2 trillion in cuts, half of them from defense to punish the Republicans. Theoretically Republicans don’t want any defense cuts. Why? Because if you listen to the Democrats in the media, Republicans like the military, ’cause they love being able to launch missiles and kill people. The Democrats would be faced with cuts in Medicare. And the Democrats don’t like cuts in Medicare because the Democrats like saving people. I’m just telling you, these are the images that have been put out. The Republicans are supposedly unalterably opposed to cutting the defense budget. The Democrats are unalterably opposed to cutting social programs, but both cuts would happen if there isn’t a negotiated agreement to extend the debt limit or to raise it.
So that’s where we are. Sequestration hits in a couple of months if no agreement is made on the next round of negotiations. So the Republican position is, what the hell, just let the sequester happen. We’ve gotta get some spending cuts sometime. Obama doesn’t want any spending cuts. Not a penny’s worth. None. That’s not the agenda. There is no and will be no cut in spending. And so the usual scare tactics are being employed now as to what sequestration means. The Democrats are running around saying, “You’re gonna lose your food stamps. Kids will be starved. We’re taking food out of the mouths of babies.” It’s the same thing that they always do, they’ve been doing it since 1995.
It’s all designed to scare the Republicans into not letting it happen, because they’re gonna fear that the American people will believe that they want kids to starve; the American people will believe they want old people to not have health care; the American people will believe that they don’t want anybody having food stamps. The American people will believe all this and the Republicans usually do cave, in light of such pressure. So now Durbin, the point of this comment that he made was, come on, sequestration, it was never really meant to be the budget. It was just a budget strategy. It’s just out there as a really bad thing that nobody wants, and because nobody wants it, we’ll come to a deal first.
That’s what he’s saying. Sequestration was designed as a budget threat, not a budget strategy. And that’s true. It was designed to be so toxic to both Democrats and Republicans that neither of them would let this happen and they would agree to a deal. Well, Obama’s not agreeing to any kind of compromise. He’s not agreeing to any spending cuts whatsoever, so there’s no reason for the Republicans to make a deal. And they’re saying, “Well, look, we want spending cuts. There’s gonna have to be some. We can’t continue with this, so let’s just let sequestration happen. The hell with it. He’s president. Let him live with it. It’s his idea anyway.”
That’s why the Democrats, the Washington Post and Pelosi and Reid are out saying the debt’s been fixed. There isn’t a problem. We’ve had all this debt reduction. Pelosi and Reid are lying through their teeth and Obama’s gonna go out in the State of the Union and promote all this silly social issue stuff. And about that, even the Republican establishment, “Republicans, you need to drop your opposition to social issues. You gotta get that off the table. Just get that off and stay focused on the fiscal stuff. This abortion stuff, it’s just killing us.” Now it’s gay marriage that’s killing us, and gun control, immigration, that’s killing us.
So one by one the Republicans are caving and throwing away every core belief that they have trying to make sure that nobody dislikes them. I have no idea where the sequestration thing is gonna end up. All I know is, the Democrats are lying through their teeth about spending cuts that haven’t happened, debt reduction that hasn’t happened, debt fixes that haven’t happened. And as to what to do about it, I haven’t the slightest idea.