A Centrist Solution

Here’s Ezra’s gloss on the financial regulation compromise:

So rather than a bank tax, which Scott Brown worried would take capital out of the banking system, we’re going to drop part of the TARP program that was … putting capital into the banking system. And rather than making big banks and big hedge funds foot the bill, FDIC fees will be hiked so that small banks have to pay in but hedge funds don’t.

I’d like to blame Feingold and Cantwell’s principled stances for this one, but I doubt that it mattered. Without a 60-40 majority, whoever was Republican 60th vote would have extracted some other, equally stupid compromise to get this thing passed. Brown was just the designated prima donna for this one.

84 replies
  1. 1
    Comrade Javamanphil says:

    It helps to be on a private game reserve when you only eat what you kill.

  2. 2
    colleeniem says:

    So I’m finally getting around to reading The Big Short, and I’m so mad I could spit when I read about this. If someone could tell me what amazing benefit hedgefunds provide to the greater economy, I’m all fucking ears. This is just ridiculous.

    Sorry so cranky–I’m still reeling from the tongue bath NPR gave Bobby Jindal this morning.

  3. 3
    Napoleon says:

    He was just the designated prima donna.

    I have a gut feeling raising the FDIC fees may be a smart idea to get this passed. Afterwords come back with a stand alone bill with the hedge fund tax and see if the same Republicans will ignore their local banker screaming to support it to benefit some hedge fund in NYC.

  4. 4
    Comrade Javamanphil says:

    @Napoleon: Wish I had your faith. Any bill, no matter how small and targeted, with the word tax or fee will be the 24/7 talking point for the entire wingnut 27%. “Obama raised taxes!” “Job killer!” “Largest tax increase in history!” The rump will not be denied.

  5. 5
    rickstersherpa says:

    Cantwell has some well made points, but again where were there ever 60 votes for a bill that would really break up the big banks. As for Feingold, his demand for a “bill that would prevent a future crisis” shows him at his show boat worst. The 400 year history of capitalism shows that credit driven asset bubbles are an endemic feature of the system. You can establish rules, and even have regulators willing to enforce them for a few years, but after a generation or two, memory fades and the once more a great credit bubble will emerge and its promoters will be saying “this time its different.”

  6. 6
    joe from Lowell says:

    some other, equally stupid compromise to get this thing passed. Brown was just the designated prima donna for this one

    Designated? Brown isn’t negotiating for the Republicans. He’s negotiating for himself.

    Since when did the Republican Party of No start accepting the general outlines of Democratic proposals while negotiating for stuff at the margins in exchange for votes? Is that how they’ve been handling their position in the opposition?

    Scott Brown is looking out for Scott Brown. He’s bringing back something shiny for Fidelity and State Street Bank.

  7. 7
    Napoleon says:

    @Comrade Javamanphil:

    I know, I just wanted to start the day with some positive thinking.

  8. 8
    Sly says:

    I’d like to blame Feingold and Cantwell’s principled stances for this one, but I doubt that it mattered.

    It gave the four Republican holdouts more leverage, because unless Byrd is replaced before the cloture vote (and Cantwell votes for cloture but against final passage) Reid\Dodd will need to get two more votes along with Brown. Trying to pick off one opportunist is easier than trying to pick off three. Just ask Ben Nelson.

    Without a 60-40 majority, whoever was Republican 60th vote would have extracted some other, equally stupid compromise to get this thing passed. Brown was just the designated prima donna for this one.

    More likely is that we’ll see something else dropped anyway to get Grassley, Collins, or Snowe. Laud Feingold for his principles all you want, but his actions have only made an arguably weak bill weaker.

  9. 9
    demo woman says:

    Feingold and Cantwell are voting for the filibuster not against the bill. They have a choice whether or not to support the bill once it’s brought to the floor. Their decision only highlights the problem with the filibuster.

  10. 10
    kay says:

    Scott Brown has a bit of a history.

    Is there any particular reason he’s somehow bound by his word this time?

    The Senate just rejected Reid’s effort to move to a vote on the Wall Street reform bill, 57-42 (60 votes were needed).
    “I don’t know a lot about anything, but I know how to count votes,” Reid said after the vote. “But a Senator broke his word with me.”According to multiple Democratic sources, he was talking about Senator Scott Brown, Republican of Massachusetts, who, the sources say, told Senator Reid he would vote yes but instead voted no.

  11. 11
    CalD says:

    I’d like to blame Feingold and Cantwell’s principled stances for this one, but I doubt that it mattered.

    Oh, it mattered. The more Republicans they have to bring along, the more they have to give up to get them. Perhaps the good news is that at the point where you can get even two or three Republicans defections for even a vote of cloture on anything very consequential, I think you may have to call that progress of a sort. They’ve certainly been pretty monolithic in their opposition up till now.

  12. 12
    kay says:

    I think it should be noted that Feingold is opposing the White House from the Left, yet the White House is aggressively backing his campaign for re-election.

    This is directly contrary to the continuing liberal theme that the White House disses liberals in favor of more conservative Democrats, like Blanche Lincoln.

    The “reality-based” community needs to add this information, even if it goes against the narrative they’ve chosen, if they want to remain reality-based.

    Can’t pick and choose your facts.

    Biden heads to Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to headline a fundraiser for fellow Democrat Russ Feingold. The three-term senator is up for re-election this year. He’ll face off in the general election in November against businessman Ron Johnson, who last month won the Wisconsin Republican party’s endorsement, or businessman David Westlake. Those two candidates will face off in the GOP primary held on September 14. “Feingold’s maverick image fits well in his state, but he has never won by a huge margin,” says Stuart Rothenberg, publisher and editor of the nonpartisan Rothenberg Political Report. Next Wednesday President Barack Obama visits southeastern Wisconsin, to discuss the economy. It’s not known if Feingold will attend that event. The senator is on the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is holding confirmation hearings next week for the Elena Kagan nomination to the Supreme Court.

  13. 13
    Nick says:

    I’d like to blame Feingold and Cantwell’s principled stances for this one, but I doubt that it mattered.

    If he had their votes, Reid would have forced the bill through this week before the New England three had any time to bitch about the bank tax…what they did is give them an opportunity to bitch about someone, because once they said no and Byrd died, it was “Gee, do we have the votes to pass this?”

    It gave them leverage.

  14. 14
    CalD says:

    @kay: I believe he may have gotten spanked by his own leadership for that one. Even though he was bucking the party line, which they couldn’t have liked very much, and even given the fact that no one of them is above being as big an asshole as it takes to try and get what they want, if people start dealing in bad faith then what’s to stop anyone on either side from reneging on any deal they cut? It’s Dodge City at that point and even McConnell probably has enough of a grasp on reality remaining to understand that.

  15. 15
    CalD says:

    @Nick: Can’t wait to read FireDogLake’s analysis of how this is good news for progressiver^ers.

  16. 16
    kay says:

    @CalD:

    if people start dealing in bad faith

    Maybe. I think dealing in bad faith is a way of operating. I don’t think people all of a sudden start breaking their word at 50 years old when they take a new job.

    Maybe the House Of Lords can beat him to death with “tradition”, but if he didn’t arrive there with any personal ethos that says he shouldn’t lie to get an amendment included, I don’t know that they can give him that.

  17. 17
    CalD says:

    So first Kennedy, now Byrd. They next time a major piece of legislation comes through the Senate we should start a death pool.

  18. 18
    Svensker says:

    What benefit does this bill provide? It seems to me the cons far outweigh the pros and in this case a bad bill seems worse than no bill.

  19. 19

    @CalD:

    So first Kennedy, now Byrd. They next time a major piece of legislation comes through the Senate we should start a death pool.

    Ever notice how it’s never the old fucks in the GOP who die in office?

    I stand by my initial analysis: U.S. Senate = epic fail.

  20. 20
    Kryptik says:

    Wow, it’s almost like the folks on the right are totally unserious about actually solving our financial issues. But that’s, like, unpossible, since I always hear about how they’re the only ones with real practical ideas! Like tax cuts!

  21. 21
    kay says:

    @CalD:

    Or, people could retire before they’re 90, when they’re in really poor health. I know this is in bad taste, but we have an age limit for elected judges here and I’m in favor of it.

  22. 22
    CalD says:

    @kay: That is very much not how the senate operates. The outcome of virtually every vote in the senate, certainly on any vote on anything consequential, is known before the votes are cast. As I said before, ain’t none of them above being as big an asshole as it takes to try and cut a better deal, and that can involve flirting and teasing right up to the point of actually sealing the deal (or not), but there are still a few lines and Brown I believe crossed one that time. Also “House of Lords” is a really dumb thing to say unless you’re talking about the one in England.

  23. 23

    @CalD:

    That is very much not how the senate operates.

    The Senate *barely* operates at all. The GOP denies unanimous consent, uses the secret hold like a weapon, filibusters everything, and there’s no penalty outside the electoral process, and since asshats like McConnell, Sessions, etc. are only up every six years (not to mention in states where people vote against their own self-interests), they can do whatever the hell they want.

  24. 24
    kay says:

    @CalD:

    I think the Senate operates too much like a club. I recognize that it was intended as a check on the rowdy House, but I get really tired of hearing about comity and their institutional tradition.
    If they’ve lost me, they’re in trouble, because I’m generally a “rules-based” person. It too often seems to be “about” the member’s ego. The biggest qualm I had about Obama was that he came from that club, and some of his least attractive qualities reflect was I see as the Senate’s remove from ordinary people, and their propensity to self-promote and exclude. Maybe it’s self-selecting, and he had some of that going in. In that election, I didn’t have any choice, of course.

  25. 25
    Kryptik says:

    @arguingwithsignposts:

    Not to mention that people who don’t know just how utterly arcane and obstructionist the Senate rules are by sheer design end up simply blaming the party in power.

    In other words, said asshats like McConnell and Sessions and the other folks will get REWARDED through the electoral process for their successful bullshit storms. And that wholly depresses me.

  26. 26
    Corner Stone says:

    @kay:

    I think it should be noted that Feingold is opposing the White House from the Left, yet the White House is aggressively backing his campaign for re-election.
    __
    This is directly contrary to the continuing liberal theme that the White House disses liberals in favor of more conservative Democrats, like Blanche Lincoln.
    __
    The “reality-based” community needs to add this information, even if it goes against the narrative they’ve chosen, if they want to remain reality-based

    Let me see if I have this straight. The WH backing an incumbent D Senator against an R challenger in the upcoming general election is somehow equivalent to the WH backing the incumbent D Senator against a D challenger in two different primary elections?
    What lesson should the “reality based” community draw from this?

  27. 27
    Tom Hilton says:

    Yeah, but Feingold is still a narcissistic douchebag. Fuck him.

  28. 28
    Sentient Puddle says:

    What the fuck is this “leverage” shit some of you are spouting? No. They don’t have the votes to ram it through with just Democrats. They always needed at least one Republican. Two Democrats defecting didn’t give the Republican supporters anything more than marginal leverage.

  29. 29
    Glen Tomkins says:

    You only get to blame the majority

    Period. No detours into blaming obstructionist Republicans, or Blue Dogs, or Azatlan revanchists, or little green men from Mars.

    We need 60 votes in the Senate entirely because the majority chooses to let stand the filibuster. The filibuster is part of the rules of the Senate, not the Constitution. The Senate can change those rules with a simple majority vote. Yes, by long-standing tradition, those same rules of the Senate say that the rules of the Senate can only be changed at the beginning of a new Congress, in the organizing resolution. But that too is a self-imposed Senate rule, not part of the Constitution. Yes, perhaps the parliamentarian of the Senate might object to a procedure that sets out to change the rules of the Senate at any time other than at the seating of a new Congress. But, guess what! The parliamentarian is not a Constitutional office. He or she serves at the pleasure of, you know the refrain by now, a simple majority of the Senate. Not that the presiding officer of the Senate is even compelled to follow the parliamentarian’s advice in ruling on whether or not a motion to change the rules would be permissible.

    The filibuster could be history, and we could have the best WSR bill acceptable to a simple majority of the Senate, and all within the hour. All it would take would be for that simple majority to exercise its will. That this is not happening is no one’s fault except that of the simple majority of the Senate which continues to refuse to exercise the power given it by the Constitution, to do the duty given it by the Constitution to govern this country.

  30. 30
    kay says:

    @Corner Stone:

    The theme is that the WH (or the Democratic Party) “strong arms” liberal Democrats when they don’t move Right. In addition, the complaint has been that White House continues to support Blue Dogs who vote against WH wishes, which, according to the liberal narrative, makes Obama “weak”.

    Doesn’t seem to be operating in the case of Feingold. Hmm. He’s defying the WH, and they’re working on his behalf, but somehow that doesn’t make the WH weak, but is instead not even mentioned.

    But don’t let facts that go the other way get in the way of carefully chosen facts that fit the cohesive narrative.

  31. 31

    Where’s that bully pulpit(tm)?!

  32. 32
    John S. says:

    @Sentient Puddle

    What a funny comment!

    First, you ask with incredulity, “What leverage?” only to conclude, “Well, it’s only a little leverage.”

    Thanks for a good laugh.

  33. 33
    kay says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Is there a possibility everyone isn’t all about punching hippies, 24/7, and that some other factors might be in play?

    Or are we going with divining motive from reading tea leaves?

  34. 34
    Corner Stone says:

    @kay: Your whole response is a non-sequitur to my question, and has nothing to do with the original post I questioned.

    The WH supported two D incumbents in primary challenges against arguably more left minded candidates. Although in neither case could the challenger be called a liberal.
    Now the WH supports a D incumbent in the general election against an R challenger.

    I do not see how this action supports the BS meme you are trying to push.

  35. 35
    Corner Stone says:

    @kay:

    Is there a possibility everyone isn’t all about punching hippies, 24/7, and that some other factors might be in play?
    __
    Or are we going with divining motive from reading tea leaves?

    Based on your original post, and your two follow ups now, I have zero idea what point you are trying to make.

    Do I need tea leaves to divine the WH would rather work with Feingold than any R Senator in that seat?

  36. 36

    @Corner Stone:
    I grokked what you wrote originally, and maintain that the WH should stay out of primary politics altogether, as a general rule. When it comes to the general, they should unload on the real opposition.

  37. 37
    Chyron HR says:

    @Glen Tomkins:

    You only get to blame the majority

    Period. No detours into blaming Blue Dogs.

    Which members of the majority did you want us to blame, then? The ones that aren’t obstructing Democratic legislation?

  38. 38
    Corner Stone says:

    @arguingwithsignposts: I would never expect the WH to do anything other than support (at least nominally) the incumbent in a primary.
    The incumbent would have to be one egregious mofo to get the WH to throw support behind the challenger. And even then it’s hard to imagine in modern politics.

    But for anyone to use the WH backing the D candidate in a general election as some kind of lesson or point…I just don’t see it.
    What else are they going to do?

  39. 39

    @Corner Stone:

    I would never expect the WH to do anything other than support (at least nominally) the incumbent in a primary.

    I think “nominally” is the operative word there. I don’t know that BHO did more than “nominally” for Lincoln, but he sure did put the embrace on Specter.

  40. 40
    Nick says:

    @Corner Stone: The WH could, you know, NOT help Feingold at all and just leave him out there to fend for himself, like you all want them to do with your Blue Dog de jure, but they aren’t.

  41. 41
    Corner Stone says:

    @Nick:

    The WH could, you know, NOT help Feingold at all and just leave him out there to fend for himself, like you all want them to do with your Blue Dog de jure, but they aren’t.

    I would say that you aren’t even trying now Nick, but honestly, almost all of your posts are about this pathetic.

  42. 42
    Kryptik says:

    On a slightly related note, I find myself wholly depressed that, according to the Boston Globe, the unimitable Mr. Brown is the most popular pol in Massachusetts. Guess style really is infinitely more important than substance.

  43. 43
    Nick says:

    @Glen Tomkins: and you can blame St. Russ of Madison for that as he opposes getting rid of the filibuster more than some Blue Dogs do.

  44. 44
    Nick says:

    @Corner Stone: Is that all you got? weak.

  45. 45
    Tom Q says:

    I’m not willing to cut Feingold/Cantwell any slack on this. In holding out for the Bill of Their Dreams, they’re allowing GOPers to nick it just a bit so it accomplishes slightly less. For those around back in 1994, this is similar to what the Black Caucus did on the crime bill. They withheld their votes for a bill that would have substantially funded their communities because they objected to some minor (but very popular) death penalty provisions. The Clinton administration was forced to look to moderate Republicans (who then still existed) to get enough votes to pass the bill. The result? The death penalties stayed in, but much of the community funding was eliminated. Well played!

    I’m not a hippie-puncher — my first vote was for George Frickin’ McGovern, so don’t try to pigeonhole me. But I’ve been embarrassed by the tactical stupidity of so many I thought were on my side. I’m reminded of something I saw happen back in college. The house I lived in had a board of residents who voted on, among other things, the salary for the cook. One guy I knew was close friends with the cook, and advocated an exorbitant salary for which no one else voted. We kept taking the salary down, by increments of, say, $.50 an hour, slowly accumulating more yes votes. But at a certain point, this guy said we’d gone below what was acceptable to him, so he withheld HIS vote — even though that left the currently considered level one short of passing. I think we went three rounds lower before we finally got to a majority; in his zeal for the cook’s rights, he cost her about $1.50 an hour. This is frighteningly close to some far left strategy today.

  46. 46

    @Svensker:

    I’m going to regret this, but how is that?

  47. 47

    @Glen Tomkins:

    Hey, you know what would be really awesome on top of all of the problems we have now? Creating a Constitutional crisis by flagrantly ignoring the Senate’s rules! What could possibly go wrong?

  48. 48
    Corner Stone says:

    @Nick: If you think for one second the WH ever considered leaving Feingold hanging then you are dumber than I thought.
    Feingold could take a poop on the WH lawn, pound it into a frisbee then play catch with Bo and the WH would schedule fundraisers for him.
    The sheer idiocy of people who would try to use WH support for Feingold as some kind of cudgel against “liberals” or “reality-based” or whatever.
    It’s not instructive in any way. It doesn’t tell us anything about their political strategy, nor anything about what past decisions on elections means.
    The WH is going to go all out for any D Senator candidate that asks them to. This shouldn’t even need to be said.

  49. 49
    Nick says:

    @Corner Stone: No, but you’d like us to believe when they go to bat for conservative Dems, that is a sure sign that they’re truly conservatives and hate liberals. Right?

  50. 50
    Sentient Puddle says:

    @John S.: Because they’re all atwit about how this is all Feingold’s fault, and if he would just play nice, this wouldn’t be a problem. Which is total bullshit.

  51. 51
    Corner Stone says:

    @Nick:

    No, but you’d like us to believe when they go to bat for conservative Dems, that is a sure sign that they’re truly conservatives and hate liberals. Right?

    Jeebus H Cracker. No. That is the point kay tried to push upstream that I have been arguing against this whole thread.
    As I have repeatedly stated, their actions in both the D primaries and now the Feingold general election are completely expected and understood.
    Their actions don’t set up a meme in any way whatsoever.

    Can you really be this obtuse?

  52. 52
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Svensker:

    Kevin Drum has a rundown of what’s in the bill. In his opinion, it’s weaker than it should have been, but what’s there is still extremely helpful in reining in the banks.

  53. 53
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Corner Stone:

    As I have repeatedly stated, their actions in both the D primaries and now the Feingold general election are completely expected and understood.
    Their actions don’t set up a meme in any way whatsoever.

    I have no idea what your problem is, then. You seemed to be claiming that the White House’s support of Feingold’s re-election was somehow different than when they supported Blanche Lincoln in the primary. Now you’re saying the opposite when you say that the White House’s support of Feingold and Lincoln are exactly the same.

    So what was your point, then?

  54. 54
    kay says:

    @Corner Stone:

    But, it looks like Bill Clinton is supporting the DLC’er in Colorado and the WH is supporting the more liberal candidate.
    I don’t have any problem with advocacy, or advocates. Just don’t practice advocacy and pretend you’re presenting a complete recitation of facts, when you ignore facts that contradict the story you want to push.
    It isn’t as simple as “the WH hates hippies” and liberals damage their own credibility with me with these storylines that accumulate selected facts and present them as a pattern.
    I’m familiar with that. I recognize it. I’m an advocate. There’s nothing wrong with it, as long as both sides are clear on what’s going on.

  55. 55
    Allison W. says:

    OK. Let me ask you guys this. If Feingold had a D challenger in the primary who was more willing to work with the WH, would it be OK if Obama supported the challenger in this case? You all complained that Obama shouldn’t have supported Lincoln because she has gone against the WH numerous times. Well, Feingold hasn’t exactly been playing nice since Obama took office.

    In any case, the OP of this argument is basically saying that the Left is being hypocritical/biased when it comes to other Liberals behaving badly.

  56. 56
    Corner Stone says:

    @Mnemosyne: Arrrggghhhhh!!
    No. NO!
    That is not even close and is in fact not it! No!
    I objected to kay saying that somehow Feingold’s getting WH support destroyed some mythical meme that the “reality-based” community had setup when the WH supported Lincoln in AR.
    There was never the BS meme she wanted to push, and Feingold in a general election is irrelevant to her storyline in any event.

  57. 57
    kay says:

    @Allison W.:

    In any case, the OP of this argument is basically saying that the Left is being hypocritical/biased when it comes to other Liberals behaving badly

    That’s not my point at all. My point is the Left are acting as advocates for certain policy and positions, and they are using selected facts to buttress the idea that the WH has some unified negative response to those policies or positions.

    Which is actually fine, if you’re an advocate. What isn’t fine is pretending that’s a complete picture, or filling in blanks with guesses as to motive or intent or some Grand Plan.

    I’m asking for a admission that it is possible that the current storyline on the Obama White House ignores crucial facts, so may be off-base.

  58. 58
    Corner Stone says:

    @kay:

    I don’t have any problem with advocacy, or advocates. Just don’t practice advocacy and pretend you’re presenting a complete recitation of facts, when you ignore facts that contradict the story you want to push.
    It isn’t as simple as “the WH hates hippies” and liberals damage their own credibility with me with these storylines that accumulate selected facts and present them as a pattern.

    And you see? You continue to try and push this BS meme.
    Some people in the WH are antagonistic to liberal policy outcomes. But in elections they are always going to back the incumbent. And that’s why it’s not useful or possible for the BS meme you keep trying to propagate here.
    The WH supporting Lincoln was not about “hating hippies”, it was about the incumbent. The WH supporting Feingold isn’t about how much they “love liberals even when they defy them”, it’s about the incumbent.
    And now in CO, for the WH, it’s about the incumbent.

  59. 59
    Sentient Puddle says:

    @Mnemosyne: Thanks for catching the policy wonkery in this thread. I missed it, and it’s much more interesting than talking about the politics of who Obama supports and why.

    I’ll add that the nature of this legislation means that it’s not possible that a bad bill is worse than no bill. That just doesn’t grok. The parts of the bill that don’t end up working just stop there: they don’t work. They don’t make the problem any worse. It’s sort of like plugging a leak that’s sprung in two places, but only covering one of the holes. You’re not making the leak any worse by not completely fixing it.

    Really, the only way legislation could make the problem any worse is by removing derivatives regulation and then mandating that all banks regardless of size must use credit default swaps as securities instead of hard currency.

  60. 60
    kay says:

    @Allison W.:

    In other words, Allison, I would expect advocates to support Feingold. That’s what advocates do. He’s pushing their position (although, honestly, I’m not as sure as they are that’s what this is about, but that’s motive, and I generally don’t go there). They should support him. Absolutely.
    But why should this Right wing Rahm Emanuel WH support him? And they are. Not strong arming. Not punishing. But campaigning.
    Perhaps because electoral calculations are more complicated than “punching hippies”?
    Perhaps because every single decision isn’t based on hippies v Democrats?
    Perhaps (a possibility!) the storyline is being jammed inside a set of facts?

  61. 61

    @Sentient Puddle:

    Right, that’s why I don’t get any progressive opposing it, at this point anyway.

  62. 62
    kay says:

    @Corner Stone:

    That doesn’t explain Colorado. It’s fine, Corner Stone. You collect facts that buttress the story line and draw distinctions that go to the theme. Advocacy, in other words. I’ll look for holes, and point out when the facts don’t fit the ongoing narrative.
    But don’t try to tell me you’re operating with better or more complete information. I completely understand (and admire!) creating a compelling storyline to advance a position, I just don’t present it as the only possibility, and I acknowledge when I see something that goes against My Theory.
    Unless I’m acting as an advocate, then it’s all part of the job.

  63. 63
    Nick says:

    @Allison W.:

    OK. Let me ask you guys this. If Feingold had a D challenger in the primary who was more willing to work with the WH, would it be OK if Obama supported the challenger in this case

    No, that would be stupid…you don’t abandon an incumbent whose vote you need.

    That doesn’t preclude me from supporting a challenger. Feingold isn’t the only Democrat who can win in Wisconsin.

  64. 64

    @kay:

    Corner Stone is right; I see what you’re trying to say, but you’ve set up a false dichotomy. No one has ever suggested the WH wouldn’t support a progressive Democrat in a general election.

  65. 65
    Corner Stone says:

    @kay:

    That doesn’t explain Colorado.

    Sigh. Bennett is the appointed Senator and incumbent in CO.

    You collect facts that buttress the story line and draw distinctions that go to the theme

    Sigh. There is no story line except for the one you keep trying to sell.

    I’m not collecting facts. I’m not buttressing a story line.
    I’m debunking your poor attempts at wagging your finger at “hippies” or “liberals” or the “reality-based” community.
    YOU are the one trying to sell a story. I am just pointing out that there is no story to be sold.

  66. 66
  67. 67
    kay says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Corner Stone, Lincoln is the incumbent.

    The White House supports incumbents? Is that your argument, now, today?

    Why doesn’t that apply to Lincoln?

  68. 68
    kay says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Bennett is the appointed Senator and incumbent in CO.

    And Lincoln was the incumbent in Arkansas.

    Thanks for making the argument that is it likely that the White House supports incumbents, regardless of ideology.

    That’s NOT what you argued in Lincoln’s case, however, because there was a theme that gave a more useful explanation.

  69. 69
    Corner Stone says:

    @kay:

    Corner Stone, Lincoln is the incumbent.
    __
    The White House supports incumbents? Is that your argument, now, today?
    __
    Why doesn’t that apply to Lincoln?

    What the hell are you talking about? Michael Bennet is the current D Senator in CO who is up for re-election.

    If you’re trying to say I complained about the WH supporting Lincoln over Halter in AR you are going to be very hard pressed indeed to back that up with a quote from me.
    Some people thought the WH should stay neutral during the AR D primary, but that was not ever going to happen. The WH protects the incumbency racket in all cases.
    If I need to I’m pretty sure I can go back to those threads and find me posting that their backing Lincoln was expected and understood.

  70. 70
    Corner Stone says:

    @kay:

    That’s NOT what you argued in Lincoln’s case, however, because there was a theme that gave a more useful explanation.

    PROVE THIS!!
    Please, PROVE THIS!

  71. 71
    kay says:

    @Corner Stone:

    If you’re trying to say I complained about the WH supporting Lincoln over Halter in AR you are going to be very hard pressed indeed to back that up with a quote from me.

    Liberals, Corner Stone. I said “liberals”. Are you now going to to try to tell me that there was not an elaborate theory for why the WH supported Blanche Lincoln over Halter?
    It was ideological. They prefer the corporatist. That was the narrative.
    Except in Colorado, where they prefer the incumbent. That Blanche Lincoln is also an incumbent wasn’t considered, because that might be a pattern that goes against the narrative.
    They also “strong arm” liberals in the House to support war funding, yet they don’t “strong arm” liberals in the Senate to support a watered-down FinReg bill.

  72. 72
    kay says:

    @Corner Stone:

    It bothers me, Corner Stone. I’m looking at the Colorado race and it looks like Clinton’s support there is a straight quid pro quo for Romanoff’s support of Hillary in the primary.
    But I heard these elaborate theories regarding Clinton’s support of Lincoln, and “establishment” Democrats versus “insurgents”.
    I just think we can find what we want to find when we start out looking for it.

  73. 73
    MattR says:

    @kay: Wait, is Michael Bennett now some progressive hero? I thought he was another centrist/conservative Democrat

  74. 74
    Corner Stone says:

    @kay:

    Liberals, Corner Stone. I said “liberals”. Are you now going to to try to tell me that there was not an elaborate theory for why the WH supported Blanche Lincoln over Halter?
    It was ideological. They prefer the corporatist. That was the narrative.
    Except in Colorado, where they prefer the incumbent. That Blanche Lincoln is also an incumbent wasn’t considered, because that might be a pattern that goes against the narrative.

    HAHAHAHAHA.
    Whatever. You tried this on and you failed. Again.
    I’m sure, and have admitted, that many people wanted the WH to remain neutral in the AR D primary. But if you can demonstrate where there was a narrative or theme that “liberals” thought the WH backed Lincoln because they preferred her obstructionism and threats to join R’s to filibuster HCR, please do so. IIRC everyone understood it was an incumbency protection racket, just like the WH backing newly minted D Specter in PA.
    Please show your work.

  75. 75
    Corner Stone says:

    @kay:

    It bothers me, Corner Stone. I’m looking at the Colorado race and it looks like Clinton’s support there is a straight quid pro quo for Romanoff’s support of Hillary in the primary.
    But I heard these elaborate theories regarding Clinton’s support of Lincoln, and “establishment” Democrats versus “insurgents”.
    I just think we can find what we want to find when we start out looking for it.

    You’re just babbling now. Sure, WJC is backing Romanoff out of loyalty. He’s sending a letter and isn’t expected to a damn thing else. Whoopee!
    But the WH is backing the incumbent Bennet, who’s pretty damn moderate/centrist himself. But that doesn’t matter to the WH. He’s the incumbent, and that’s what matters.
    Whatever elaborate theories you’re referring to, it was largely assumed WJC was a WH proxy in AR for Lincoln because he was much more popular in the state than Obama.
    Don’t know how that’s a real mystery to anyone except you.

  76. 76
    kay says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Oh, bullshit. They’re doing the same thing with Kagan.

    The theme was she wasn’t proven in the areas of civil liberties and executive power.

    They’re now taking the fact that she didn’t rephrase a question as proof that they were RIGHT.

    It’s approaching “ludicrous”, and it’s only going to continue.

    Decide on a narrative and then promote it.

  77. 77
    Corner Stone says:

    @kay: Ooookay. So you’re out of your mind then?
    Stop hopscotching around.
    You said I complained about things then when challenged you revert to some amorphous group of “liberals”.
    When challenged to provide proof that even that disparate group had constructed some narrative during the AR primary you now revert to the Kagan Hearings.
    What’s next for you? Are you going to cite a conversation you had with your best invisible friend Katy about how everyone hates the WH and also stole your strawberries?
    Maybe Eli Lake is available to do a brief guest post for you and he can confirm that this narrative really did exist. Really.

  78. 78
    Corner Stone says:

    Mr. T on behalf of kay:
    I pity the fool that doesn’t believe there was a narrative!
    Stop all the jibber jabber! Damn fool!
    Grrrr….

    {nodding sagely}
    Case closed.

  79. 79
    BombIranForChrist says:

    I am sure Lieberman will pop up at some point and demand that some pro-Israel language is included in the bill or he will not support it.

  80. 80

    @Brien Jackson:

    How would this create a “constitutional crisis”. Can you please show me in the Constitution where the word “filibuster” is mentioned? Hint. It isn’t. Did you even bother reading Glen’s post before you began clutching your pearls?

  81. 81

    @Wile E. Quixote:

    Because I’m sure no one would question the authority of the Senate majority to ignore the clearly written rules of the body whenever they felt like it.

  82. 82
    Corner Stone says:

    @NR: Yep. A whole hell of a lot of sensible, pragmatic Democrats here.

  83. 83
    Corner Stone says:

    @kay:

    That’s NOT what you argued in Lincoln’s case, however, because there was a theme that gave a more useful explanation.

    God. Just lying again.
    If you meant “liberals” then you should have said “liberals”. But you’re trying to hang this on me and you just can’t.

  84. 84
    Mnemosyne says:

    @NR:

    As soon as I saw the “he hasn’t even started getting us out of Iraq!” meme show up in defiance of, you know, reality, I knew I could ignore the whole thing. So thanks for that!

    If your case against “sensible liberals” depends on blatantly lying about what’s actually going on, it’s not much of a case.

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