OBAMA, THE BUDGET AND 2012
- The Right's Wrong Plan (Rep. Charles Rangel, HuffPost) Instead of promoting a plan to create jobs, Republicans marked their 100th day in control of the House with an agenda to end Medicare and cut the lifeline of millions of Americans. Introduced last week by Rep. Paul Ryan, the GOP's "Road to Ruin" budget proposal does do two things: it hurts the poor and helps the rich. Viewed as an effort to reduce the debt, the Republican budget is both irresponsible and immoral.
- Obama's Debt Reduction Plan Is a Political Step In the Right Direction (By Douglas E. Schoen, FoxNews.com) That being said, the president did make a strategic blunder by specifying that he wants to raise taxes on upper income Americans – having only four months ago agreed to the opposite in his budget deal with the Republicans. That budget deal is what got independents back to him at least temporarily following the midterm elections – an advantage that has been dissipating over time.
- GOP Losing Battle, Winning War (John Zogby, Forbes/Data Place) A 55% majority disagreed, with 32% agreeing and 13% not sure. Among the all important independent voters, 57% did not agree with Ryan’s Medicare proposal. Among Republicans, 54% liked the proposal, which in our polling is a relatively low number for GOP voters on policy proposal identified with their party. Also, 17% of Republicans were not sure, which is again a high number from GOP voters and shows they have real doubts about such a significant change to delivery of health care to senior citizens. Two-thirds of those 65 and over, people who have been voting for Republicans, disagreed with Ryan’s Medicare plan.
- House Democrats Win First-Quarter Money Battle (By MICHAEL D. SHEAR, NY Times/The Caucus) “Republicans’ radical agenda to end Medicare and play chicken with a government shutdown, while protecting taxpayer giveaways for Big Oil, is turning off independent voters and energizing our Democratic supporters,” said Steve Israel, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
- Lack of primary competition gives Obama an edge - With no serious challenges for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2012, the president can target the independent voters crucial to victory, while his Republican rivals must move right to win their party's nomination. (By Mark Z. Barabak and Christi Parsons, Los Angeles Times and Washington Bureau)