[Diarist’s Comment: Here’s a link to the Commission on Presidential Debates, in case anyone is interested in contacting them in order to suggest debate questions. Diarist “sadlyyes” suggested that perhaps we might join the Senators (listed below), and request that Obama and Romney be asked about their intentions, regarding the Bowles-Simpson recommendations.
The purpose of this diary is not to take a “potshot” at the Obama Administration, but to inform. Since Matt Bai’s NYT Magazine article last year, “Obama vs Boehner: Who Killed The Debt Deal?” linked here, I have been very concerned that this Adminstration would enact legislation to implement “severe austerity measures.”
The Politico article referenced in this diary, seems to confirm that suspicion. My hope is that reading this diary will prompt folks to contact their Congressperson, their Senators, and even the White House, and let them know that “austerity measures” are not necessary, nor acceptable.]
This is priceless.
Congressional Progressive Caucus members, and Congresspersons Jan Schakowsky (D-IL), Jerry Nadler (D-NY), and Mike Honda (D-CA) have penned a letter to the presidential debate commission objecting to a request by four Senators, that Obama and Romney be asked “which of the commission’s proposals to address the debt they support.” The four Senators are Saxby Chambliss (R-GA), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Joe Lieberman (I-CT), and Mark Pryor (D-AR).
The Senators had requested that the debate commission devote “specific and extensive attention to the question of how the candidates would get our nation’s fiscal house in order during the first debate dedicated to domestic policy.”
They wrote, “Specifically, we request that you ask the presidential candidates which of the recommendations of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform they would adopt, as part of their plan to reduce the deficit.”
In response, the the three (Democratic) Representatives countered with a letter stating that such a question would force “candidates to choose solutions from one menu of options.”
The Representatives “cried foul,” further stating in their letter that, “We urge the [Debate] Commission to fight any effort to unnecessarily narrow such an important debate by placing disproportionate attention on one set of proposals over another,” they wrote, adding that such a question would “cheapen the debate” and “thwart the candidates’ ability to explain alternative proposals.”
The first sentence in the Politico piece was, “Some Democratic lawmakers want to make sure that one question does not get asked at the upcoming first presidential debate – about Simpson-Bowles.” I point this out, lest it sound like I’m imagining that these CPC members are trying to give cover to the administration.
If the Democratic representatives’ true goal was to avoid narrowing the debate, regarding “putting our fiscal house in order,” they would simply ask that their own “People’s Budget” be included in the debate, as an alternative to the Bowles-Simpson recommendations.
Bear in mind that the Democratic Party has not passed any of President Obama’s budgets (which includes raising taxes) in a couple of years, at least. See the piece, Obama Budget Defeated 414-0.
This Politico piece clearly demonstrates the duplicity of some of the (so-called) most liberal members of the Democratic Party. Instead of working on behalf of their constituents and the American People to enlighten them, they appear to be running interference for the Obama Administration, by attempting to obscure their true policies and goals.
This is simply unacceptable, and we should let them know. Here’s two US Capitol toll free numbers: (866) 220-0044 and (877) 210-5351.
[Here’s the link to the full Politico article.]