Saturday, January 31, 2009


Charlie Gibson and George Stephanopoulos on ABC last night, talking about the stimulus package (video link):

... GIBSON: Are the Democrats nervous about this? Is the Obama administration nervous about it -- that the Republican argument might be beginning to take hold, that it's a bad bill?

STEPHANOPOULOS: A little bit. They say that President Obama is still popular and trusted by the American people and the idea of addressing the real economic pain out there is still popular with the American people, but they concede that this bill has been getting defined by its least popular elements. That's why they're pushing for at least three big changes, Charlie, over the next couple of weeks: number one, remove some of the most unpopular spending programs, even if they're valuable, like the National Endowment for the Arts; number two, maybe add some business tax cuts that Republicans have been calling for; and number three, add some agricultural spending or other aid to small rural states who say they've been shortchanged in this process. They think that could broaden the base of support, get some Republicans.

It's getting defined in the media as a bad bill, for the obvious reason that two thirds of the pols talking about it on cable news are Republicans. That doesn't mean the public is necessarily buying the GOP line.

But this is why Republicans never truly feel defeated: because they can always count on the media to bend over backwards to present their side of the story as not eminently reasonable but, in all likelihood more eminently reasonable than the Democratic side.

And, of course, this is compounded by idiot Democrats going to people like Stephanopoulos and fretfully telling him they think they're playing a weak hand and will need to give in even more. First-rate job, guys.

I said it before and I'll say it again: It's time for an Obama fireside chat. He should explain what's needed and why the allegedly controversial provisions are, in fact stimulative, in plain language -- no poetry needed, just informative, easy-to-understand prose. It's not only time for something like this, it's past time.

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