Forget the Grand Bargain: Focus on Jobs
A couple of notes after being away for awhile:
Forget the Grand Bargain
When President Obama said late today that perhaps a grand bargain deal can't get done if the parties are too far apart, I breathed a sigh of relief. A bad grand bargain is worse than no deal at all, especially when the motivations amongst the parties are so mismatched. For his part, Obama still wants his face on Mount Rushmore, and he thinks that a grand deal plus his other achievements will get him there, even if the road is scattered with victims. For their part, the House GOP demonstrated yesterday that to them, November 2012 never happened, and no deal is good unless Obama capitulates.
Obama should start signaling that rhetoric like yesterday's has consequences, and that perhaps nothing else on the fiscal front can be done until more Democrats are elected next year. He should ramp up his touring of the country and use of OFA, pushing for immigration reform, gun safety, and immediate action to create jobs. He should hammer the message that true tax and spending reform will have to wait until more Democrats are elected next year to replace the do-nothing Republicans. Such a message will not be lost on the 15-20 House GOP incumbents who barely won their 2012 races.
MSNBC Needs a Shot In The Arm
On another matter, MSNBC will be making a lineup change soon, with Ed Schultz leaving his weeknight show for a weekend gig. His show consistently was far behind O'Reilly, which was to be expected, but the network as a whole has lost a little steam since the election, with only Maddow's slow-paced show and O'Donnell's doing well against their Fox counterparts in the key 25-54 advertising demographic. The network needs a shot in the arm, as only Matthews and O'Donnell have a watchable edge to them. Oh by the way, Keith Olbermann and Current TV are set to settle their differences in the next day or so, freeing him up to return to cable TV. Hmmm.