Summers Shows Liberals in the Senate Have a Lot of Leverage

By: Monday September 16, 2013 7:54 am

Larry Summers withdrawing his name from consideration for Federal Reserve Chair because of opposition from Democrats is the rare reminder that liberals in the Senate have a significant amount of leverage, if they ever choose to use it. If we had a functioning Senate a handful of liberal senators could easily be ignored. The President [...]

The Ron Paul Dilemma for Liberals

By: Friday January 6, 2012 1:26 pm

Ron Paul is such a dilemma for many liberals because he doesn’t fit nicely into the current narrow political continuum. It is easy for liberals to ignore how bad Democrats are on many issues because Republicans are almost always equally as bad on those issues or marginally worse.  This makes comparing a Democrat to a [...]

Debt Ceiling Post Mortem: Obama Between a Rock and a Hard Place

By: Thursday August 4, 2011 10:05 am

Quinnipiac released their Florida poll numbers on the President and the debt ceiling bill, and it does not bode well for his 2012 chances in the swing state. His approval among Independents went from 42% last Wednesday through Sunday to 33% from Monday through Tuesday, while disapproval shot up 52% to 61%. When asked to describe how they feel about the deal, more Independents said they were “angry” (23%) than either Republicans or Democrats.

In order to contextualize the bind that this puts Obama in, it’s worth recounting what I’ve been told about how the deal went down.

Senate Rules Reform: Udall, Harkin, Merkley Remind Us Why Washington Doesn’t Take Liberals Seriously

By: Wednesday January 26, 2011 12:40 pm

With their total capitulation on Senate rules reform, Sen. Tom Udall (D-MN), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), and Tom Harkin (D-IA) again remind us why no one in Washington takes liberals seriously. . . and frankly why they shouldn’t. For months, Udall has been promoting the “Constitutional Option,” which would allow the senators to declare the first [...]

Barack Obama and the Art of Negotiation

By: Monday December 20, 2010 9:58 am

If, as Robert Kuttner says, Obama is negotiating a a “grand bargain” with the Republicans that includes cuts to Social Security benefits, the GOP is running a successful trap for him once again. White House strategist apparently believe that this will “give Obama ‘credit’ for getting serious about deficit reduction.’”

Praise the President, or Save the House?

By: Tuesday September 21, 2010 1:45 pm

Obama is at it again, complaining about “griping and groaning Democrats” and frankly just not looking very presidential. Per Jake Tapper: Last night at the Pyramid Club in Philadelphia, President Obama said “when I hear Democrats griping and groaning and saying, ‘Well, you know, the health care plan didn’t have a public option;’ and I [...]

Glenn Greenwald, Dylan Ratigan & Me on the “Professional Left”

By: Wednesday August 11, 2010 2:23 pm

On MSNBC today, I talked about the “professional left” with fellow Robert Gibbs-irritants Glenn Greenwald and Dylan Ratigan. Gibbs, with his contempt for the “Canadian health care system,” is merely reflecting the attitude of a White House that marched into the health care debate committed to giving corporate “stakeholders” everything they wanted in exchange for [...]

What Progressive Victory Looks Like: Ending Corporate Welfare To Help Regular Americans

By: Friday March 26, 2010 5:04 pm

Yesterday was actually big victory for progressivism. Not in health care, but in student loan reform. Finally, a wasteful and worthless corporate welfare program was eliminated. The taxpayer dollars that were being thrown away on private profits will now be redirected to help low income students attend college and pay down the debt. This is [...]

A Big Win For PhRMA, Health Insurance Companies, Obama, Reid, Nelson, Lincoln, Lieberman; A Big Loss For The American People And the Progressive Movement

By: Thursday December 24, 2009 4:16 am

Today’s vote in the Senate to pass their health care reform bill was a big win for many people. It was a big win for the drug companies, the biologics industry, the hospital companies, and the for-profit health insurance corporations. They will all get billions of government dollars piled on to their ledgers, and and [...]