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May 5, 2015

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Letter to the editor:

People, not ideals, got a deal done

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Something actually got done in Washington. It might have been at a late hour, and the polarized left and right contingents may not be all that happy, but something did get done.

The immediate “fiscal cliff” was avoided, and the credit belongs to a good old-fashioned personal relationship between Vice President Joe Biden and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.

They were able to leverage a personal friendship into a major last-second deal that helped settle down the American heartland and avoid a fiscal cliff that was seriously getting on most people’s nerves.

What Biden and McConnell did was to exemplify what has been missing in this government for the past four years — cooperation based on mutual friendship and trust.

This was a powerful testimony to the importance of personal relations in the political arena in the nation’s Capitol.

One can draw on this example for some hope that all things are possible when well-meaning folks in these situations join together.

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  1. Amen! Reid was shut out as well he should have been. His role was to throw a monkey wrench in the negotiations for the President. The President, as is his negotiation technique {Chicago style], always ups the ante after getting a deal done. It is a cowardly way of reaching a gentlemen's agreement.

    Triple wiching hour coming up: Debt ceiling, Continuing Resolution, and possible government shut down. Stay tuned. It's going to get tricky for the President in the next round of negotiations.


  2. Sp correction: "Witching."


  3. Puleeeze! They did what they do best - kick the can down the road. I wonder, Bob Jack, if you run your household in a similar fashion - borrowing 43 cents of every $ you spend; going without a budget; making decisions only when you have to and at the last minute when you are rushed into making mistakes? That, in a nutshell, is what the sleazeballs in the pig sty known as Washington, DC do as a matter of course. Little wonder they are viewed with such disgust by 82% of polled Americans.

  4. It is refreshing to see what most all of us Americans know works: mutual respect, trusting relationships. Our country was built with these virtues, and should be governed with these virtues.

    Sure, there is more work ahead, but this a far better, more productive model for getting the job done. And it speaks to the young people who are coming up that such civility is the direction they should be taking up. For a brief moment, it all makes me very proud to see our representatives work in such a way: the American Way.

    Blessings and Peace,

  5. "What Biden and McConnell did was to exemplify what has been missing in this government for the past four years -- cooperation based on mutual friendship and trust."

    Jack -- you've completely ignored this nation is still a debtor beholden to its creditors, something our great-grandchildren will likely still be dealing with. It's happening on our watch. Who do you think they're going to blame?

    "They did what they do best - kick the can down the road."

    lvfacts -- what you said!

    "...we must not let our rulers load us with perpetual debt. We must make our election between economy and liberty or profusion and servitude. If we run into such debt, as that we must be taxed in our meat and in our drink, in our necessaries and our comforts, in our labors and our amusements, for our calling and our creeds...[we will] have no time to think, no means of calling our miss-managers to account but be glad to obtain subsistence by hiring ourselves to rivet their chains on the necks of our fellow-sufferers... And this is the tendency of all human governments. A departure from principle in one instance becomes a precedent for [another]... till the bulk of society is reduced to be mere automatons of misery... And the fore horse of this frightful team is public debt. Taxation follows that, and in its train wretchedness and oppression." -- Thomas Jefferson in a letter to Samuel Kercheval, July 12, 1816

  6. After Sen. Harry Reid left his last bargaining session with Sen.Mitch McConnell over the fiscal cliff,and getting no where close to a deal with Sen. McConnell.In a panic Sen.McConnell called V.P.Joe Biden as a last ditch effort to save his own skin in averting going over the so called fiscal cliff.

    If the country went over the cliff Sen. McConnell would have been left holding the bag.That is something no politician wants in his or her legacy.Sen. McConnell is not interested in the country as much as he is about making life difficult for The Democrats. As we get closer to the midterm elections..There is no pat on the back for Sen.McConnell.

  7. I wasn't aware that Bob Jack was in the room to know what actually happened...oh wait he wasn't. This letter is speculation and I will speculate that Bob was busy listening to and watching conservative propaganda sources to glean all this wonderful insight.

  8. Only in America can you get a job paying in excess of $120,000 and do nothing but argue over empty talking points. The House has hardly spent any time legislating, and next year their schedule is worse. Imagine that! Where else but in America can you work less than 1/3 of the year and acquire all sorts of perts while average citizens go homeless and hungry because of a monster storm?

  9. Future appears to be absolutely right in saying "In a preChristmas Oval Office meeting Boehner queried Obama 'I put $800 billion on the table. What do I get for that?'" And this is the base for my disenchantment with the "deal" - OBAMA DIDN'T EVEN GET THAT $800 BILLION! Boehner sneaked it off the table at the last minute! So much for Republican't credibility. In the end, the Dems were actually negotiating against themselves! As is normal: when all is said and done, far more is said than ever gets done!

  10. Uncertainty--a certainty when Congress / POTUS involved. No wonder business doesn't know which way is up. No wonder the economy can't get upright.

  11. Arrogant attitudes have not helped. The Dems sitting back saying they'll consider any body else's ideas, suggestions, legislation on how to fix things and then nix all discussion about SPENDING CUTS.... So, Dems: WHAT IS THE PLAN that you have? What gives you the right to confiscate our economy while you spend on things not authorized?

  12. "After Sen. Harry Reid left his last bargaining session with Sen.Mitch McConnell over the fiscal cliff,and getting no where close to a deal with Sen. McConnell.In a panic Sen.McConnell called V.P.Joe Biden as a last ditch effort to save his own skin in averting going over the so called fiscal cliff." Samspeaks


    According to the news accounts, McConnell and Biden worked out the Debt Ceiling deal in 2011 too. That got where we were on January 1, 2013: The fiscal cliff with Sequestration. It was President Obama that okayed Biden to do so with McConnell in both cases because Reid could not. So the pattern [Biden and McConnell striking the deals] has been followed before and likely will be again.


  13. Carmine,

    Did it ever occur to you that Sen.Mitch McConnell can't work with anyone else but V.P.Joe Biden?It was Sen. McConnell who called V.P.Biden at the last minute to save his own skin.Pres.Obama approved the meeting in order to avoid the fiscal cliff.

  14. Sam:

    No that's not the case. It wasn't McConnell. It was Reid doing Obama's dirty work and it backfired. It was a case of Good Cop [Biden], Bad Cop [Reid]. Boehner saw right through it and called Reid what he did. Even Reid screwed up recently calling Sandy a worse natural disaster than Katrina. Really? He's either losing it, and that's possible, or he was battle weary of the game playing on the fiscal cliff negotiation. And it took a toll on him. Reid is alot of bad things, but stupid he isn't.


  15. Carmine,

    That's not the case.Sen.McConnell stated to the world on Oct 23,2010 that his main goal was to make sure Pres.Obama was a one term Pres.
    On Dec 5,2012 Sen. McConnell took to the floor and offered an immediate vote on Pres.Obama's fiscal cliff plan. A unified Democratic caucus were happy to proceed with a vote, but McConnell objected to his own proposal.It is Sen.McConnell who is against anything that Pres.Obama brings forth even his own proposals ( McConnell's ) if the Pres. agrees with him.

    House speaker John Boehner dropped the F-Bomb on Sen.Harry Reid after Reid said that Boehner was running a "Dictatorship" in the House of Representatives.

    House speaker John Boehner has a 56 percent disapproval rating and a 30 percent approval rating for his handling of the fiscal cliff deal in the latest Washington Post/ABC news poll.

  16. Sam:

    We'll have to disagree on this, albeit respectively.

    Reid was in DC because he maintains, and has for years, a $1 million suite at the Watergate. Boehner was home in Ohio. Reid, in Boehner's absence, was taking pot shots at him on the floor of the Senate. Wrongly. As soon as the Speaker came back to DC and saw Reid, Boehner dropped the F bomb on him.

    And Boehner said he would NOT bargain with Obama behind close doors ever again. Why? Reid was getting his marching orders from Obama. Boehner would get the GOP on board and Reid would get it turned down by Obama. Obama changed the stakes and upped the ante. Exactly what he did in 2011 and always does. It gets old. It won't happen again. Even Reid this time around was angry with Obama because Obama used him as a patsy. His water boy. That's why McConnell called on Biden, just as he did in 2011 when talks with Reid/Obama broke down. Look to Obama to do his own dirty work with the debt ceiling, CR extension, and sequestration. Triple witching. No more Obama hiding behind Reid.


  17. A PS Sam about Reid calling Boehner a "dictator."

    Just the opposite. Like the kettle calling the pot black. If ever there was a dictator it is Reid and the way he runs the Senate and has since 2007. Boehner on the other hand is considered by all, even his worse political foes, as the most collegial Speaker of the House in recent times. I have no doubt that it was this "potshot" [calling Boehner a dictator] that was at the root of Boehner's "F" bomb to Reid.

    They don't call him "dirty harry" for no reason. He's earned the nickname.

    Reid abused Senate rule 14 [which allows bill drafting behind closed doors by excluding the minority party] over 70 times. Reid abused the parliamentary procedure "filling the tree" 70 times by allowing only Dems to add admentments to bills on the Senate floor. And, if he gets his way, Reid will change the super majority rule of 60 votes to start/end debates on the Senate floor to a simple majority of 51. These are the only 3 ways to draft/amend Senate bills. And Reid wants to control all 3 to the exclusion of the minority party. That's a dictator.


  18. "Reid abused Senate rule 14 [which allows bill drafting behind closed doors by excluding the minority party] over 70 times."

    Correction. Reid violated Rule 14 which says bills have to be introduced and debated on the Senate Floor. How? By intro'ing and amending bills behind closed doors to lockout the GOP.

    Keep in mind Reid has not passed a Senate budget in over 1350 days. Although doing so annually by April 15 of each year is required by law: The Budget Act of 1974.



    Why dirty harry gets away with breaking the law.


  20. Sam:

    Note that not one politician after all this time, neither republican or democrat, came to Reid's defense against Boehner about the "f" word. What does that tell you?


  21. Carmine,


    Note that not one politician after all this time,neither republican or democrat,came to Reid's defense against Boehmer about the "f" word.What does that tell you?

    It's Best to watch your language!!!

  22. "It's Best to watch your language!!!" @ samspeaks

    Are you referring to Reid's or Boehner? ;-)


  23. Carmine,
    "Are you referring to Reid's or Boehner?"

    I believe it was Boehner who droped the F-bomb.What do you think?

  24. Yes, Sam but I believe it is Reid who has the nick name "dirty harry" not Boehner. A nickname given to him by the Washington Times, not exactly a bastion of conservatism in printed journalism. ;-)

  25. Carmine,

    Yes,Sam but I believe it is Reid who has the nick name "dirty harry"not Boehner.A nickname given to him by the Washington Times,not exactly a bastion of conservatism in printed journalism.:-)

    Sen. Harry Reid has been called "dirty harry" by you in your comments to the LVS.To be honest with you I have never heard of anyone else saying it other than you.Politicians call and say not so nice things about one another all the time.The F-bomb is a little strong.

    I believe what has received the most attention in the news is the F-bomb dropped by Boehner during the fiscal cliff debate last month.

  26. Sam:

    It was not me who gave Reid the name. It was the Washington Times. I merely agreed with the Times and use it too.

    Actually, the F word got little to no news coverage. And for all intents and purposes is and has been a non-starter except from you.

    Recall Dina Titus used the F word too in describing the results of the mid term elections in 2010. She told her staff the day after the election: The Dems got F'ed. That as I recall got more newsprint than Boehner's usage. For whatever reasons, good or bad.

    And I understand that Geithner, the outgoing Treasury Secretary, uses the F word every time he opens his mouth. Rarely do you hear the news call him on it. If at all. Certainly, the President never called him on it, because he does it all the time in all his speech with staff and peers.


  27. Carmine,
    What you are forgetting is that the fiscal cliff was hot news and was on everyone's mind. It was also on every news channel and newspaper in the world.When you have millions watching and listening to the news you get more feedback from viewers on a news worthy item. Some of the other office holders you mentioned did not draw much attention when using the F-bomb in conversations.Had anyone of them been involved in the fiscal cliff saga and dropped the F-bomb it would have been big news also at that time.

  28. Sam:

    I don't think either was big news: The fiscal cliff/F word. And while the fiscal cliff news was pervasive, most people didn't care. It was all hype. Politicians create a crisis, then get the people to crave for a solution. Makes them [the politicians] feel important. Needed. I knew, as well as others, and posted here, that they would never strike a grand bargain. Just delay the inevitable. Exactly what they [politicians] did. The F word is not news when used by politicians. It's part of the DC vernacular.


  29. Carmine,

    "I don't think either was big news:The fiscal cliff/F-Bomb".

    They may not appear to be big news to you,but they both drew world wide attention and interest.Both things created buzz around the world. So what else is new in politics?

  30. "So what else is new in politics?"

    Neither of these. The fiscal cliff of 2012, was a repeat of the same in 2011. And next month again for 2013.

    F word news? Not with polticians, NEVER! Par for the course. Or more correctly: Parlance for the coarse! ;-)


  31. PS SAM, in parts of the civilized world, the elected officials resort to brawls in their legislatures when disagreements and tempers flare. Do you think words bother them?


  32. Carmine,

    That might be a good thing to see Boehner in a brawl with Reid.Boehner is younger(63),but Reid(73) was a boxer.Boom Boom Bam. If that were to happen the F-bomb would be mild to what else comes out of their mouth's.

  33. Sam:

    The operative word is "WAS." And ring fights are alot more supervised and controlled.

    Boehner ran a tavern. I'm sure he is use to bar room brawls and fights with no wholes barred.

    My $ is on Boehner.


  34. Carmine,

    If Boehner ran a tavern he had a baseball bat,or a gun.With Reid being 10 years older and a bit frail,I think he needs a baseball bat or a gun going against Boehner.

  35. Sam:

    Reid would probably end up hitting himself with it. Harry struggles to walk these days. A bat would help him if he used it as a cane.

    Take note. Whenever you see Harry he is surrounded with an entourage of women. Whenever you see Boehner, it's men.


  36. Carmine,

    I'll take the women!!!

  37. Sam:

    I like women leaders too over men. But not women followers. Especially if Harry Reid is doing the leading.