Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Monday, December 04, 2017

David C. Barker: Congressional Republicans' collective sigh of relief after passing tax legislation may seem confusing. Won't voters hold them accountable in 2018 for passing such an historically unpopular bill? The answer is "no," for several reasons. First, the bill's unpopularity may be somewhat overstated. A lot of the disapproval expressed in surveys is more about the bill's sponsors than about the bill itself. In these polarized times, almost anything carrying the president's endorsement is going to be a non-starter for more than half the population. More importantly, as University of Glasgow political scientist Christopher Jan Carman and I have found, Republicans in Congress simply don't care as much about public opinion as Democrats do.

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Many Republicans -- voters and lawmakers alike -- simply cherish their principles more than they do the preferences of a largely capricious and inattentive public.

And nothing is more central to Republican orthodoxy than tax cuts for the wealthy.

If they can't cut taxes when they have control of the presidency and both houses of Congress, what do they have to live for?

To be sure, if Republican lawmakers hadn't gotten this done now, while they had the chance, they could have expected donors to ignore their calls next year.

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"But this goes well beyond fundraising. The first elections members of Congress need to worry about next year are the primaries. If they were to have nothing to show for their two years in power -- which, until now, they arguably didn't -- they could have expected to face serious primary challenges."

"Republicans also know that their collective fate in 2018 depends on voter turnout. Unlike presidential years, when heavy mobilization efforts, media focus and social pressure leads most voters who are even remotely interested in politics to go to the polls, midterms are much lower profile affairs.

Almost always, the party that controls the presidency loses seats, because dissatisfied voters are more motivated seek revenge at the ballot box. And that tendency may be heightened in 2018, if recent rallies or elections are any indication.

But by slashing taxes and destroying Obamacare in one-fell swoop, Republicans might motivate their base enough to at least contain their losses."

"But isn't there plenty in the new law to motivate Democrats as well? Certainly: if reduced deductions on mortgage interest, charitable deductions, state/local taxes, graduate students' tuition waivers, teacher supplies and so on don't get the Democrats' backs up, the repeal of Obamacare's individual mandate surely will.

But here's the deal: there are plenty of other things motivating The Resistance right now, so the Left was going to turn out in 2018 regardless. If the GOP hadn't done something to counter that tide, they may have faced an electoral tsunami."

excerpts - much more including the conclusions at the link

#1 | Posted by Corky at 2017-12-02 10:02 PM | Reply

I'm sorry that you're so allergic to "winning", Corks.

#2 | Posted by cookfish at 2017-12-02 10:45 PM | Reply

- to "winning"

Thanks for confirming that the horse race is all your intellect can handle; that the underlying issues of who is in power and what interests they serve are too deep for you.

After all, the best single attribute that predicted who would vote for Trump was/is... that they are under-educated.

#3 | Posted by Corky at 2017-12-02 10:48 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 6

So much winning. Stock market. Economy. Unemployment. Supreme Court. Consumer Confidence high. Tax cuts. Pissed off Libby journalists and bloggers. Get with the program, and turn that frown upside down.

#4 | Posted by cookfish at 2017-12-02 10:56 PM | Reply | Funny: 3

- So much winning.

Lying, thieving, kow-towing to special wealthy issues... no wonder you like that horse.... maybe someday they'll actually Tinkle Down on you like they always promise.

Rwing voters are like Charlie Brown, and GOP Lucy is always teeing up the ball for them... and they pulling it away.

#5 | Posted by Corky at 2017-12-02 11:00 PM | Reply

and then

#6 | Posted by Corky at 2017-12-02 11:02 PM | Reply

🖕🏻 Cockfish.

#7 | Posted by jpw at 2017-12-02 11:04 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

#7

That would be an improvement,;-)

#8 | Posted by Corky at 2017-12-02 11:09 PM | Reply

You Negative Nancys cannot stop the rising tide of winning. Winning is like that. Oh that's right, you voted for that other guy. Well anyway, it feels good. You should try it some time.

#9 | Posted by cookfish at 2017-12-02 11:12 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

#9

You should try supporting and celebrating winning policies when they are actually to most people's advantage, maybe even especially yours.

You know, rather than being a proxy voter and mouthpiece for your corporate masters who just got a PERMANENT 22 percent reduction in taxes while you got diddly.


#10 | Posted by Corky at 2017-12-02 11:18 PM | Reply

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#9 if you're winning in the current climate it's because many more are losing.

Which means nothing good for you.

Which is indicated already by the smugness of your posts.

#11 | Posted by jpw at 2017-12-02 11:20 PM | Reply

"a PERMANENT 22 percent reduction in taxes"

It's 42%.

35% to 20% = 15 percentage points

15 / 35 = 42.85% reduction in tax rate

#12 | Posted by Danforth at 2017-12-02 11:21 PM | Reply

#12

You're right of course... but I just made a mistake, Cookie's been brainwashed for decades, lol.

I'd been reading about the debate between a 22 or 20 percent, and whether the difference should go to wealthy individuals instead of corps... but never to the lower incomes as was suggested.

#13 | Posted by Corky at 2017-12-02 11:26 PM | Reply

#4

You're not getting a tax cut, FISH. You're poor enough they're taking more money from you.

#14 | Posted by Zed at 2017-12-03 07:51 AM | Reply

FISH is trolling guys. He won't tell you what he does for a living for good reason. He likely spent a sleepless night mourning the destruction of his deduction for his barber's license.

#15 | Posted by Zed at 2017-12-03 07:55 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 3

So much winning. Stock market. Economy. Unemployment. Supreme Court. Consumer Confidence high. Tax cuts. Pissed off Libby journalists and bloggers. Get with the program, and turn that frown upside down.

#4 | POSTED BY COOKFISH

Since this is the first major piece of legislation in the Trump era that would have any effect on the economy or employment, I suppose you are all in favor of bringing back Obama and his policies that got us here, right Cookie?

#16 | Posted by Sycophant at 2017-12-04 09:54 AM | Reply

When one doesn't have a tenable position, taunting always is a good substitute; eh, Cook?

#17 | Posted by e1g1 at 2017-12-04 10:00 AM | Reply

I doubt Cookfish's taxes are actually lowered beyond 2019 or so.

#18 | Posted by Sully at 2017-12-04 10:05 AM | Reply


I ran across this interesting Op-Ed piece. It puts forth an interesting viewpoint...

Maybe Trump knows his base better than we do
www.washingtonpost.com

...Watching the Republican tax plan race through Congress, one is reminded of a big apparent difference between President Trump's program and other populist movements in the Western world. In the United States, Trump is leading something that is best described as plutocratic populism, a mixture of traditional populist causes with extreme libertarian ones.

Congress's own think tanks -- the Joint Committee on Taxation and the Congressional Budget Office -- calculate that in 10 years, people making between $50,000 and $75,000 (around the median income in the United States) would effectively pay a whopping $4 billion more in taxes, while people making $1 million or more would pay $5.8 billion less under the Senate bill. And that doesn't take into account the massive cuts in services, health care and other benefits that would likely result.

Martin Wolf, the sober and fact-based chief economics commentator for the Financial Times, concludes, "This is a determined effort to shift resources from the bottom, middle and even upper middle of the U.S. income distribution toward the very top, combined with big increases in economic insecurity for the great majority."

The puzzle, Wolf says, is why this is a politically successful strategy....


The rest of the Op-Ed goes on to explain why it may be a successful strategy, and is an interesting read.

#19 | Posted by LampLighter at 2017-12-04 10:31 AM | Reply

"So much winning. Stock market. Economy. Unemployment. ... Consumer Confidence high." - #4 | Posted by cookfish at 2017-12-02 10:56 PM

Thanks, President Obama!

#20 | Posted by Hans at 2017-12-04 10:57 AM | Reply | Newsworthy 1

The premise of this article is wrong. The Republicans do care about public opinion. They happen to know though that public opinion is extremely fickle and usually stupid. The moment they are no longer able to win while accepting bribes from Wall Street and the largest corporations while simultaneously getting re-elected by all the stupid rightwing voters will be the moment they change their tune.

#21 | Posted by moder8 at 2017-12-04 11:18 AM | Reply

If endorsing a child rapist wasn't a watershed moment on the moral turpitude of the GOP I don't know what is.

#22 | Posted by 726 at 2017-12-04 12:04 PM | Reply

So much winning. Stock market. Thanks Obama Economy. Thanks Obama Unemployment. Thanks Obama Supreme Court. Ruined Consumer Confidence high Thanks Obama. Tax cuts.Not winning Pissed off Libby journalists and bloggers. Fake News

#4 | POSTED BY COOKFISH

#23 | Posted by IndianaJones at 2017-12-04 03:07 PM | Reply

Republicans in Congress simply don't care as much about public opinion as Democrats do.

Now that's funny.

#24 | Posted by JeffJ at 2017-12-04 03:21 PM | Reply

Actually, it's true. So many house seats are gerrymandered and RepubliKKKlans have been great at passing voter suppression measures in so many states, on top of which we know who Russian will support, that Dem's will have to win by at least 10% in the popular vote, and even then it's not a sure thing. In the Senate, more Dem seats are up for election, and more red state Dems are at risk than blue state Grand Old Pedophile party seats.

That said, Dems need to get on top of this bill NOW and hang it around the necks of every f'n GOPer running for election from Senate to Dog Catcher. They have truly shown their colors as the party of the oligarchs. As party over country. As the party that SUPPORTS CHILD MOLESTATION. Now if we can just convince the Bros to vote for moderate Dems in red states so that Dems can take back the house and hopefully the Senate and stop Combover Caligula's packing of the courts, and hopefully get him and Pence impeached and off to prison in good order.

#25 | Posted by _Gunslinger_ at 2017-12-05 01:39 AM | Reply

Republicans don't have to worry about public opinion.

Their constituents don't know what the hell is going on.

#26 | Posted by ClownShack at 2017-12-05 02:45 AM | Reply

The GOP don't care about morals either.

#27 | Posted by 726 at 2017-12-05 07:00 AM | Reply

You mean just like when the Dems didn't care that the ACA had low popular opinion but was passed anyway (to be fair, opinion wasn't low because it was bad, it was low because Obama kept it hidden for so long and made it so long with so much fluff that nobody could understand it...even many Dems who are even on record saying so). I'm still waiting to see articles that put both sides on blast for doing the same things instead of having these partisan articles that prove nothing.

#28 | Posted by humtake at 2017-12-05 11:38 AM | Reply

"You mean just like when the Dems didn't care that the ACA had low popular opinion"

So you hated it then, but you love it now. Gee...what changed?

#29 | Posted by Danforth at 2017-12-05 11:44 AM | Reply

I say, let them go with the Bill as is. Their corporate donors lose all their deductions and pay a flat 20%, regardless. LOL

Winning!

#30 | Posted by chuffy at 2017-12-05 05:54 PM | Reply

You mean just like when the Dems didn't care that the ACA had low popular opinion but was passed anyway (to be fair, opinion wasn't low because it was bad, it was low because Obama kept it hidden for so long and made it so long with so much fluff that nobody could understand it...even many Dems who are even on record saying so). I'm still waiting to see articles that put both sides on blast for doing the same things instead of having these partisan articles that prove nothing.

#28 | POSTED BY HUMTAKE

Another humtake dumbtake. Obamacare may not have been overly popular, but unlike GOP tax scam, it was more popular than the wild west state of healthcare that preceded it. It was also debated by both sides and compromised upon; unlike GOP tax scam.

#31 | Posted by IndianaJones at 2017-12-05 06:26 PM | Reply | Newsworthy 2

So much winning. Stock market. Economy. Unemployment. Supreme Court. Consumer Confidence high. Tax cuts. Pissed off Libby journalists and bloggers. Get with the program, and turn that frown upside down.

#4 | Posted by cookfish

Let's see. Still involved in foreign wars, no wall, a white house full of bankers and lobbyists, tax breaks for the rich, blown up deficit for your kids, feel like youre WINNING yet, or just too stupid to know when you've been had?

#32 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2017-12-05 06:32 PM | Reply

"So much winning. Stock market. Economy. Unemployment. Supreme Court. Consumer Confidence high. Tax cuts."

I could swear you posted the same sentences when Dubya's economy was called "that great Bush economy" by conservatives and a "house of cards" by those of who knew better. I just hope we have another Obama in the wings to clean up this mess when it crashes and burns.

#33 | Posted by danni at 2017-12-05 07:35 PM | Reply

Lying, thieving, kow-towing to special wealthy issues...no wonder you like that horse...maybe someday they'll actually Tinkle Down on you like they always promise.

Have you ever been pissed on by a Russian racehorse? Don't knock it till you've tried it.

--The President of the United States of America, The Honorable Mr Donald John Trump, Esq.

#34 | Posted by madscientist at 2017-12-05 09:39 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

Its the Repugs last chance to chomp at the Federal feed trough before demographics does them in. They aim to get everything they can while they can. ---- poor people. Make America Third World.

#35 | Posted by bayviking at 2017-12-05 09:54 PM | Reply | Funny: 1

Cocaine is a hell of a drug!

Said no Republican ever.

#36 | Posted by Federalist at 2017-12-06 12:22 AM | Reply

#35 | Posted by bayviking
Feed trough? I thought you said the owned all the feed?

#37 | Posted by Federalist at 2017-12-06 12:23 AM | Reply

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