Democrats look so merry:
Faced with the reality that taxes are going up, either automatically or with their tacit assent, Republicans are hoping that they can bank an ideologically suitable down-payment on a broader deficit reduction package in the form of cuts to Medicare spending.
The problem is, unlike the Democrats’ calls for higher taxes on rich Americans, the GOP’s preferred Medicare cuts are deeply unpopular. So they’re trying to cow Democrats into proposing these cuts first — to effectively author both sides of the proposal — and provide them political cover.
“We’ve come down with ours. We’re still waiting for theirs. That’s the status of the negotiations,” said Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) in the Capitol Thursday, laughing off the GOP’s demand.
So do the Republicans:
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) told the Weekly Standard that he “burst into laughter” when Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner outlined the administration’s “fiscal cliff” proposal.
Man, I wanna live in Washington, too.