Other Republicans are blaming Hurricane Sandy for disrupting Mitt Romney’s momentum; or Governor Christie for his generous praise of President Obama’s leadership in responding to the storm; or the liberal bias of the main stream media; or the remarks of extremists like Todd Akin, whose candidacy for the Senate Romney endorsed; or the choice of Paul Ryan as Romney’s running mate instead of someone like Senator Marco Rubio, who they think would have narrowed the gap among Latino voters; or the Democrats’ negative attacks on Romney that succeeded in defining him early on as a “vulture capitalist” who couldn’t relate to and didn’t care about middle class Americans; or the fact that the Democrats had a much more sophisticated ground game than the Republicans; etc., etc.
In the midst of all their accusations and alibis, I don’t hear the Republicans questioning the relevance of their own message, or their disdain for the fact checkers who pointed out their continual misrepresentation of the facts, or the ability of many Americans to see through their hypocrisy, or the fact that many of their constituents did not really like their candidate, but they hated Barack Obama more. It was the Republicans who painted Barack Obama as a failed President, overlooking their own determination to keep him from succeeding. In so doing they ignored or denied all that he was able to accomplish despite their persistent opposition.
When George W. Bush was reelected to the presidency, he announced that he had capital and was going to spend it. In marked contrast to his predecessor President Obama’s remarks at the White House today were firm but conciliatory. While stating his earnest desire to work with both sides of the aisle to accomplish the needed tax reform and to resolve other pressing matters, he made it clear he would insist that the wealthiest two percent be asked to contribute a little more.
The electorate made it clear that they think the wealthiest Americans should be asked to pay a little more. Most of us see the issue of extending the tax cuts for middle class Americans as a no brainer. The President wants to let the tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans expire, which would boost their tax rate slightly, to the level of the Clinton years. The Republicans, true to their pledge to Grover Norquist, have refused to exclude the top two percent from the tax cut.
Something has to happen soon. Let’s see if some reasonable Republicans will no longer feel bound by a pledge they never should have made in the first place.