THE ULTIMATE GOAL: NO STIMULUS WHATSOEVER?
It is to these people:
NoStimulus.com is allegedly "a grassroots website," but it's a project of Americans for Prosperity, a right-wing organization whose first president was Nancy Pfotenhauer, the then-president of the Independent Women's Forum, who went on to become a senior economic adviser for the McCain campaign. The current president of AFP is Tim Phillips, who co-founded the PR firm Century Strategies with Ralph Reed.
I can't find a direct connection, but I suspect the AFP/NoStimulus folks would be amenable to "stimulus" that's all tax cuts -- which is precisely what Senator Jim DeMint was advocating on ABC last Sunday morning. Here's a speech DeMint gave to the Heritage Foundation late last month endorsing Heritage's Orwellian-monickered "American Option," which would cut the top tax rate for millionaires and corporations from 35% to 25%, reduce other tax rates -- and do nothing else.
For Republicans, the complete rejection of all stimulus spending would be running the table, a longshot who's-your-daddy? humiliation of Obama most of them haven't wanted to discuss out loud, possibly out of fear of Obama's popularity. But with the GOP dominating debate and stimulus (at least according to the new Rasmussen poll) losing favor with voters, I think the no-stimulus notion is going to go seriously mainstream any minute now.
BUT: How much faith should we place in that Rasmussen poll? Back in the prelapsarian days for the president -- i.e., a week or two ago -- a number of polls were conducted measuring his approval and disapproval. Here are the disapproval numbers:
Democracy Corps, 1/26-1/29: 20% disapproval
FOX News, 1/27-1/28: 16% disapproval
Gallup, 1/25-1/27: 16% disapproval
Rasmussen, 1/25-1/27: 36% disapproval
Hotline/FD, 1/21-1/24: 9% disapproval
Gallup, 1/21-1/23: 12% disapproval
One of these things is not like the others, wouldn't you say?
UPDATE: The ultimate goal is no stimulus? I said it, and Byron York at the Corner confirms it:
On Capitol Hill, you can feel the Republicans' growing sense of confidence. They've scored a lot of hits on the stimulus bill, and now they're aiming higher. "We'll try to make the bill better," Sen. Jim DeMint said a few moments ago, "but this bill is so bad ... you can't fix it by tweaking around the edges…The best thing to happen would be for President Obama to lead, to call a time out." Several Republicans now want to throw the whole bill out and replace it with a package that is nearly all tax cuts — "twice the jobs at half the price." ...
And then Byron actually has the nerve to add this:
Look for Obama and his allies to push the argument that the Republican plan is one-dimensional and insufficient. If the roof is leaking, they'll say, Republicans prescribe a tax cut. If the car is stalled, they prescribe a tax cut. If the house is on fire, they prescribe a tax cut. Tax cuts, tax cuts, tax cuts.
Er, yes. Exactly.
(And on the radio right now I'm hearing a clip Senator Dick Durbin saying precisely this.)
UPDATE: Told ya -- in a vote on Wednesday night, 36 of 40 GOP senators voted for scrapping all spending-based stimulus.