"A wise and frugal government which shall restrain men
from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government."
(Thomas Jefferson)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Fred Barnes: Reagan and Boehner, Two Peas in a Pod

This article by Fred Barnes is so true and matches my memories of Ronald Reagan as President -- always thought of him as the President who was willing to take his gains in increments and then all of a sudden the Democrats would realize he had won the day and got most of what he wanted.

That should be a lesson to some conservative ideologues who want it all now or nothing.  They probably should not play poker -- Reagan was the master of the winning poker hand against the Democrats.  Smile on his face, good natured, not threatening and all of a sudden he had what he wanted when he started off.  He gave a little to get a lot eventually.  He was in no hurry and willing to take his time because he knew with a Democrat Congress he would have to play it smart.

These two paragraphs by Fred Barnes sum up President Reagan and why he was able to get so much accomplished because he didn't just say NO!

Lots of politicians are smart. Reagan was wise. He knew that, in politics, you never get everything you want in one swoop. You take what you can get now and, if all goes well, come back for the rest later.  
It’s fine to stand on principle. You’d be hard pressed to name a Republican leader who was more principled, as a conservative, than Reagan. But Reagan applied his principles over the long run, and that’s why he achieved so much.
This should be a lesson to those Republicans who are against raising the debt ceiling under any circumstance.  If they asked themselves what would Reagan do, they wouldn't like the answer.  It is also why when some of them use Reagan to bolster their side, they are not being honest.  He was a man that put Country first, Party way second, and re-election at the end.   That's how it should be so when Obama tries to channel Reagan he fails miserably as well.

Reagan was his own man who loved America and always did what was best for all Americans and our Country.  His upbeat personality made him likable because he didn't go around threatening fellow Republicans in public if they didn't do what he said.  He would be appalled at what he would see from some Republicans today who call themselves conservative Republicans when they are more Libertarian than Republican.

Fred Thompson is correct -- GOP got what it wanted -- Don't Push It!  Paul Ryan Backs Boehner Plan!  John Bolton: Former ambassador John Bolton has just released a statement of support for John Boehner’s debt ceiling plan, arguing that the speaker of the House’s plan is good for “all conservatives, especially those concerned with American national security.”  

Those are just a few of conservatives with their comments on the Boehner plan.  Are they going to be called names and RINO's by the Tea Party and some members of Congress now?  That seems to be the mantra of some so-called conservatives who put themselves and their ideology first.

President Reagan was right in the 80's and his philosophy is right today.  When you don't control the Congress and the White House, you take your wins and live to fight another day which the House Republican Leadership understands well.  Shame on the ones who are more beholden to the Tea Party for their reelection then they are at putting America first.  We didn't get in this hole overnight and we are not going to get out of it overnight.  We cannot afford to lose the credit rating and default?  Those members who put the wishes of the Tea Party first don't have a clue about how Ronald Reagan governed and most likely don't care.

Reagan and Boehner, Two Peas in a Pod

5:34 PM, Jul 27, 2011 • By FRED BARNES 

What would President Reagan do in the debt limit battle? That’s unknowable, but we do know what his goal would be: get the best deal possible under the circumstances. Reagan never let the perfect or the unattainable keep him from achieving the good.
Reagan spent the 1980 campaign promoting a 30 percent, across the board tax cut on individual income. It would be phased in over three years, starting in 1982.

Since Democrats controlled the House by a sizeable margin, Reagan couldn’t get exactly what he wanted. True, he could have held out for a 30 percent cut – and probably gotten nothing. Instead, he trimmed his tax proposal to 25 percent over three years, starting in 1983, and Congress passed it in 1981.

Reagan’s tax cuts weren’t the only reason the economy soared, but they were a big one. And those cuts turned out to be a down payment on a further reduction in tax rates in sweeping tax reform in 1986. If he hadn’t compromised five years earlier on tax cuts that lowered the top rate to 50 percent, it’s unlikely he’d have succeeded in cutting it to 28 percent in 1986. 
Reagan faced a similar situation on national security. In the campaign against Jimmy Carter, he’d advocated a tough stance against the Soviet Union that included an expensive military buildup. Most Democrats were opposed. 
He made a deal, if only a tacit one. Democrats would go along with a surge in defense spending and Reagan would accede, to some extent anyway, to higher domestic spending. Deficits grew, but the groundwork was laid for winning the Cold War. 
Now, back to the debt limit fight. Would Reagan support the Boehner plan for cutting spending while agreeing to a hike in the debt ceiling? I think so. He would see it as the best deal that’s attainable at the moment. Sure, he would favor deeper cuts, lower spending caps, and a balanced budget amendment, too, but he would recognize those can’t pass now. He wouldn’t let his pursuit of them keep him from achieving something substantial now. 
By first grabbing what he could, Reagan opened the way to driving tax rates down later to the level he wanted all along. The result: an economic boom that lasted for a quarter century. He accepted a tradeoff between military and domestic spending. The result: we won the Cold War.
Source:  Weekly Standard

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