Republicans Looking for 70-100 Votes

by: Matt Stoller

Sun Sep 28, 2008 at 12:37

From the New York Times.

Republicans, under pressure from the democrats to deliver 70-100 votes from their side, were scouring the ranks and focusing on the two dozen Republicans who were retiring this year.

"It is a good number," said Representative Ray LaHood of Illionois, one of the Republicans leaving Congress this year.

Mr. LaHood said he had suggested to the leadership that they convene the departing members to get them to make the case to wavering Republicans.

Both parties were also scouring the political map to identify lawmakers who face little or no opposition for re-election in November, knowing the would be more willing to vote yes.

Democratic officials said that despite controlling both chamers in Congress, they were far from having a majority sufficient to pass the measure just from their ranks. And they also warned that Democrats in potentially tough races could not be counted on to provide the votes to put the package over the top when, and if, it reaches the floor.

So no one who has to face the public will vote for this piece of shit.  I'm watching the news, and apparently the "Bush administration is very pleased with the progress" of the talks.

Matt Stoller :: Republicans Looking for 70-100 Votes

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Is there a reason the left online community has not reached out to redstate et al (4.00 / 3)
on this bailout deal Im pretty sure we all agree it needs to be stopped in its present form. and that the banks must be forced to pay their own way - wipe out the shareholders and bond holders. so lets team up with the right!

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

Redstate supports the bailout... (0.00 / 0) people there say, they like banks and want them to stay open.  Many of them are begging the republican house memebers to go along...

REID: Voting against us was never part of our arrangement!
SPECTER: I am altering the deal! Pray I don't alter it any further!
REID: This deal keeps getting worse all the time!

[ Parent ]
thats a dramatic over simplification (4.00 / 1)

"One basically good idea that will probably stay in is to allow the government to take warrants in financial firms that participate in the bailouts."

although I think redstate is overly optimistic on that. i have feeling its going to be incredibly watered down.

and they said this...

"One idea that I regarded as ridiculous appears to have hit the cutting room floor, but not before creating at least a fear last night that the negotiations would be derailed yet again: it was proposed to require banks and Wall Street firms to purchase insurance from a new government agency, to protect against defaults in their portfolios of distressed assets."


there are things in their position to disagree about. but the most fundamental thing we all agree on is not risking tax payer dollars.

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

[ Parent ]
for once I agree with Newt Gingrich (4.00 / 6)
within a few years this bailout will look like a very expensive failure, and the people who voted for it will pay a big political price.

This could fuel big Republican gains in the 2010 Congressional elections if the Democrats are stupid enough to go along. And of course it won't solve the problems it's supposed to solve.

I have lost a huge amount of respect for Barney Frank. I can't figure out his angle, unless he wants to be the Wall Street establishment's choice in the crowded Democratic primary to replace Ted Kennedy.

Join the Iowa progressive community at Bleeding Heartland.

Barney Frank is 68 .. (0.00 / 0)
he isn't going to replace Ted ... he's just sold out to Wall Street .. like a lot of Dems(mainly DLC) have .. they just don't get it

[ Parent ]
Eye of Newt and Possible Exculpatory Evidence (0.00 / 0)
Yes, the political price for voting for this could be quite high. The inability to find enough House members to vote for this is fairly predictable.

(With respect to Newt, as an aside, I am beginning to think that Newt was actually the one who cooked up McCain's suspension strategy. Just add "Eye of Newt" to your campaign John...and all will be well. Ha!)

LOL, I like the fact that Republicans are scouring the Canon, Longworth and Rayburn buildings for their old and retiring members. They might have better luck rounding up dead members to vote for the bailout.

Also, ever the optimist that I am, is it possible that perhaps there is some backroom understanding that after passage, very little of this money will actually be spent? Is it possible that going forward, very tight reins will be kept on the expenditures by the oversight committee?

There is now obviously a pent-up, psychological need for "some bailout" in the international markets. (The drum roll has been going on now for so long, the cymbal must be hit.) Even if it is, in truth, merely an empty black box, it might very well have a positive effect.  Hey, one can always hope that there is some exculpatory evidence for Frank and the others. :)

[ Parent ]
if the Democrats are stupid enough to go along. (0.00 / 0)
You're kidding, right?  Go along?  They're stomping their feet and demanding the Republicans pass this bill, NOW!  This bill and the Democrats demanding it are an insult and an outrage.  Frank, Pelosi, Dodd - they all need to go.  

[ Parent ]
I saw an interview (4.00 / 3)
was David Cay Johnston on NOW. He said the effort to limit compensation for CEOs is bullshit: these fuckers will always figure out how to get paid. He said the one thing that could make a big difference is the bankruptcy provision that would allow judges to revise the terms of mortgages, but Obama and others didn't even fight for it.

It's a weird: I've only written one blog post on this--I've mostly only commented in threads--and several people have emailed asking that I prove that there's not a crisis and that Dodd's plan isn't a good way to address the maybe-crisis.

Tell me: why is the burden of proof on liberal critics rather than the people joining with Bush to hastily bail out Wall Street with our money? Shouldn't they have to prove, or at least try to prove, that the crisis or lack thereof demands this kind of solution?

i'm banning them (0.00 / 0)
The 'prove there's not a crisis' concern trolls are real assholes about it.  I'm banning them.

The proof incidentally is obvious and has been repeated many times.  If there were really a crisis, Bush wouldn't be futzing around over Bankruptcy provisions.

[ Parent ]
Please Don't Ban Them, Matt (4.00 / 11)
This is really a bad precedent, first off.

Second, they may well be actual concern trolls, but so what?  They provide an opportunity to knock down arguments that others, genuinely uncertain, are bound to here dozens of other places.  Better to hear those arguments here, and see them knocked down, than to encounter them elsewhere in an atmosphere of reverance.

"You know what they say -- those of us who fail history... doomed to repeat it in summer school." -- Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Season 6, Episode 3

[ Parent ]
yes (0.00 / 0)
trust in your readership.  We can see through the bullshit and cut to the actual debate.  The concern trolls are annoying but not incredibly persuasive.

[ Parent ]
and their not trolls (4.00 / 6)
they are genuinely concerned people.

dont make the mistake dkos makes of attacking those who disagree in its own readership. you only create a howling echo chamber.  

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

[ Parent ]
corx (0.00 / 0)

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

[ Parent ]
that is what I meant (4.00 / 1)
there is a difference between actual debate and disagreement and "concern trolls" who add nothing to the discussion.

If you blindly ban, then you run the risk of ending the debate with everyone who is taking this shit seriously.  

So yes, I agree.  But it is obvious that there are some comments not adding much to the substance.  I can certainly tolerate them.  A "howling echo chamber" would be much worse.

[ Parent ]
The lack of skepticism (4.00 / 3)
in the progressive blogosphere is frightening. The credulousness. It's like the last eight (or forty) years never happened. Much of it is due to to presidential politics--just win, baby!--but I don't know if that makes it better or worse.

[ Parent ]
excerpt from a Bleeding Heartland comment (4.00 / 2)
and this is no troll, this is a regular commenter and good Iowa Democrat:

I don't believe in blind trust in congress, the senate, or the president. However, I do believe that they have more information about this than I do. And if the majority of them do pass this hugely unpopular bill 38 days before an election, then I believe that they must see it as crucial--or they simply wouldn't do it. I hope the democrats will be able to get things added to the bill, such as a way that we can sell the stock once the market stabilizes and we can get some of our money back. I also hope they will be able to keep the House Republicans from adding goofy stuff like capital gains tax holidays which would just encourage people to sell their stock and make the market go down.

Join the Iowa progressive community at Bleeding Heartland.

[ Parent ]
These are the same people who never question doctors. (0.00 / 0)
God created humans in present form          51%
Humans evolved, God guided the process      30%
Humans evolved, God did not guide process   15%

Most Americans believe that angels and demons are active in the world, and nearly 80 percent think miracles occur, according to a poll released yesterday that takes an in-depth look at Americans' religious beliefs.

92 percent believe in God or a universal spirit -- including one in five of those who call themselves atheists.

More than half of Americans polled pray at least once a day.

Bill Maher says this country will stay fucked up until this changes.  He might have a point. I am looking forward to seeing Religulous.  

[ Parent ]
Reminds me of Britney Spears (0.00 / 0)
All the Good Germans.

[ Parent ]
Good Germans wear underwear! (0.00 / 0)
Or what is your point???

[ Parent ]
The Lay of the Land (0.00 / 0)
Not that I have scoured every corner of the "progressive blogosphere," but I think a great deal of skepticism HAS been voiced.

Additionally, on Friday, DFA (PDA and others?) sent out an "organize against the bailout" email (type in your zip code to find protest near you) to their massive national email list.

For much of last week, it seems like the bulk of the DKos community was against it...though...interestingly...after it became clear that the leadership of the Democratic party was going to opt for a variant on the Paulson plan, some of the outrage subsided.

Also, I would not underestimate the importance of Obama winning the presidency.  Put that on one side of the balance, and put "stopping this particular bailout" on the other side. Which is more important?

Lastly, though it has not been mentioned much, it may be possible to modify this bailout...after it passes. My guess, my hope, is that this has been discussed behind closed doors.  One can envision a scenario wherein this bailout passes, it stanches some of the bleeding in the financial sector, the political outrage continues, and it the bailout is then modified substantially.    

[ Parent ]
The Secret Post-Election Plan Stikes Again (4.00 / 4)
I love this fantasy that maybe there is a secret plan to change everything after the election. It comes around every time the Dems vote for something stupid and Obama wimps out.

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

[ Parent ]
The Tooth Fairy (0.00 / 0)
Hey, I am still going to put my tooth under my pillow tonight.  :)

Seriously, I think the percentages suggest that there were some backroom understandings associated with this particular legislation. What they are...I do not know.  

I did not, and would not, suggest that those understandings were that after the election on November 4, they would "change everything." I am guessing that the understandings have to do with the oversight...and the amounts that will be spent...when the leash will be pulled...that sort of thing.  

The pathetic record of the Democratic leadership in matters such as this, does not bolster my confidence that they extracted particularly progressive "understandings." On the other hand, Paulson did drop to one knee and beg Pelosi at the White House.  

[ Parent ]
This bill has jarred my faith (4.00 / 1)
that the United States of America, as governed by the Constitution, is the right vehicle for uplifting the human condition.

If somebody asked me before the Iraq War, I would have said the United States should be leading the world toward making things better for humanity.

Now I question if we're even up to taking care of ourselves.  

[ Parent ]
Seems Like They Could Be Democrats... (4.00 / 3)
I would hope that voicing a particular viewpoint that is supportive of the present position of the leadership of the Democratic party in Congress would not be considered "concern trolling".  

In fact, expressing that viewpoint is usually called "defending the position of the leadership of the Democratic party," which is trypically considered "in bounds" in the progressive netroots.

On the other hand, if the rhetoric used includes personal attacks, etc. then banning them assuredly seems warranted.

Otherwise, IMHO, just engage in good debate, and everyone will be the better for it.  

[ Parent ]
What happened to truth and making a better future... (4.00 / 2)
In fact, expressing that viewpoint is usually called "defending the position of the leadership of the Democratic party," which is trypically considered "in bounds" in the progressive netroots.
 I'm sick of cheerleading and cheerleaders.  They taught me in 06 to zip my wallet in 08.  

[ Parent ]
Fair Enough (4.00 / 1)
As am I, and I am not suggesting, or advocating, that everyone should/must support the leadership of the Democratic party.  Are you kidding me?  Uhm...far from it!

I am simply discussing the issue of what might constitute appropriate grounds for taking the step of banning someone...which of the final ultimately up to the administrators of each individual site.

[ Parent ]
Paul Krugman himself says there's a crisis! (4.00 / 1)
Would you ban him, too? Hell, Matt, if you can't stand other people disagreeing with you, why don't you simply disable all comments? Do you really want this to become a purely yaysayer site???
Wow. That's so lame.

[ Parent ]
Ok, as far as I am concerned, (0.00 / 0)
this small scale freedom of speech crisis here is already over. No lasting harm done. Let the discussions go on!

[ Parent ]
Another question, hopefully more important (0.00 / 1)
Can you explain why Americans haven't shut the country down over this?

I've become very, very pessimistic over the last 3 years or so (and that's having been an activist since the early 1990s) -- pessimistic about the state of our society, about the true possibilities within our political system, but mostly pessimistic about the American people.

In France, probably Italy and Spain and other European countries, the start of this crisis would have precipitated mass protests, general strikes, blockades of roads.  Ordinary people would have posed a greater threat to the social order than the financial industry, and the government would have had to placate the people instead of the wealthy.  Why won't we do that in this country?  Why won't people block intersections in lower Manhattan, and chain themselves to the doors of the NYSE?  Why won't we march on and into the Capitol, and physically stop them from voting on this?  Why won't we all go on strike?

The answers from within our society are obvious -- we can't afford to lose our jobs, get tasered and arrested, etc.  We'll look like anarchist crazies.  But to me, this is really the only issue that matters, in a way.  As long as Americans refuse to challenge power directly in this fashion, we'll never get anything.

Can we fix this problem?  If so, how?  I've been an organizer and activist long enough to know the standard rap about teaching people about their collective power through organizing, and frankly I don't buy it much any more.  My suspicion is that Americans are ideologically opposed to mass solidarity, and that the Jay Goulds of the world have won.  Can you change my mind about this?  The last 10 days haven't done anything to make me think I'm wrong.

[ Parent ]
Why won't people block intersections in lower Manhattan, and chain themselves to the doors of the NYSE (4.00 / 2)
clearly you've not dealt with the NYPD. :)

but I share your pessimism about the rest of the country.

I think the protest at Wall St the other day was good, but it was a lot of familiar faces. I knew a lot of people there. Not a lot of every day workers on hand. I think a better protest would be to do marches through midtown at like 8am before work starts and at 5pm - to allow regular people to get involved - what is valuable about the protests is not stomping your feet in front of banks, but building awareness of solidarity among the population - and then distributing other calls to action - like calling your reps, or vowing to vote anti-incumbent to make any sellout pay.

once you have enough solidarity, then you can do big protests and shut down entry to a building.

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

[ Parent ]
Building solidarity (0.00 / 0)
I agree that you can take baby steps, and build brick-by-brick.  I've seen it happen from up close, and I've even helped make it happen.  But it seems that while we're carefully assembling bricks by hand on our end of things, other forces in our society are busy ripping the building down with a crane and a wrecking ball.

Our society has a much, much lower capacity for mass action than we did in the 1930s, and especially taking into account our improved communications nowadays, that's really depressing.  Obviously, corporate and government authorities are also more adept at tracking us than they were 75 years ago, but still...

Reality is imposing objective time limits.  At best, our traditional methods of building solidarity have proven too slow, and too fragile, to succeed against our enemies.

I don't really have a proposed solution, just more pessimism, I'm afraid.  And I'm not trying to hold myself up as a paragon of direct action -- I'm anything but.  I've gotten arrested (on purpose!), and protested and marched, but I'm not god's gift to the Movement or anything.  I don't even particularly like conflict.  But I despair when I see how far behind we are, and how little time we have.

[ Parent ]
Wall Street Demo (4.00 / 2)
Well, as I mentioned, I was there.

But we need another one tomorrow. Alas, the orgs who were behind the first, PDA, Jobs w. Justice, seem to have shot their wad and they're not into keeping the pressure on.

No calls for a follow up-and that's desperately needed.

[ Parent ]
they should do it in midtown (4.00 / 2)
most of the bank headquarters are up their anyway. and they could wind through the streets before the start of the day or at lunch time. or call for a lunch time protest and everyone takes a long lunch. just step outside your office and stand on the street and yell no bailout. organizers could send cheer leaders to the fronts of big buildings, dressed in suits with a sign and lead the chanting.

sadly these groups are overly focused on george bush, and not focused on the common element - tax dollars. win the middle and right by removing the polarization and focusing on the common interest. but most leaders and participants in these groups are not politically savvy. they were dressed up in their pink and revolution outfits. so foolish for building broad participation.

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

[ Parent ]
At least McCain seems to (4.00 / 1)
have boxed himself into supporting the plan so he cannot really surprise everyone by voting against it while Obama supports it.  The wiggle room that Obama and McCain have left themselves is getting smaller and smaller.

I would wait until I see McCain cast an aye vote if I'm Obama.

Please check out the quick hit about another bank being nationalized (0.00 / 0)

plenty of capital to go around when you crush the bank bond holders. I know i'm being repetitive, but its a simple idea that acknowledges the credit market problem and provides a solution that does not risk tax payer dollars.

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

Expect it to be nationalised in the bad way (0.00 / 0)
This is Britain, we do whatever international finance wants, up to and including walking under a bus.

The government will take mostly the bad assets, anything worthwhile will be sold off quick and the Tories will use this as an excuse for swinging spending cuts.

Forgotten Countries - a foreign policy-focused blog

[ Parent ]
Going along with Bush and the lesser of two evils (4.00 / 1)
Nancy, Harry, Steny and gang think this is just like all the other cave's to Bush.  AUMF, Patriot Act, Bankrupcy Bill, MCA2006, FISA, etc.

They think there is no price to pay.  Because after all, they are the lesser of two evils.  So voters have no other choice.

But, it's likely that the GOP will back out at the last minute giving just enough safe votes to pass.  And then the Democrats will be the greater of two evils.


Primary Challengers (0.00 / 0)
Now is the time to start organizing primary challengers for the democrats who support this bill. In a few days or less, we will know what the bailout contained and didn't contained. Those democrats who vote yes should be held responsible for their votes just like they had to with Iraq and taking away our civil liberties. Lets hold them responsible for their actions. If we don't have primary challengers and they have to run against republicans, the republicans will win so us the people have to step in to stop it and try to preserve a democratic victory in 2010.

Ok, so where is the deal? its been 4 hours (0.00 / 0)
NYTimes reported a deal was final and being typed up at 11:30am est. its almost 3:30.  

Michael Bloomberg, prince of corporate welfare

Damn, I wish I, or any one of you, (0.00 / 0)
was: they.  Then, maybe, something, the right thing, would get done.

Why don't we just have a talk fest?

Hi, Matt :) (0.00 / 0)
Yes, you have banned me four times tonight, and I have had to go out and get new accounts just to participate on this site.  Wow, I just can't believe how 'progressive' this site is!

[ Parent ]

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