Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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February 14, 2011

MAYBE SESSIONS CAN DEBATE HIMSELF ON THE BUDGET.... President Obama's new budget proposal intends to cut the deficit by $1.1 trillion over the next decade. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R) of Alabama was asked on CNN this morning whether he considers that "a good start." He replied:

"No, it's not. This is a ten-year budget. It sets the president's plans and what the country should do for the next 10 years.... $1 trillion reduction is insignificant and does not get us off the right course."

I assume he meant to say "wrong course," but misspoke. Fine.

But literally two minutes later, in exact the same interview, Sessions reflected on House Republicans' proposed cuts.

"[E]ven the $100 billion House proposal in reducing spending will amount to $1 trillion. And that's a step. I mean, because, you carry it out for ten years and you save $1 trillion in that fashion."

Remember, Jeff Sessions is the top Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, so presumably he has some familiarity with these issues.

I'm not sure why the far-right senator thinks $1 trillion in deficit reduction is unacceptable and insignificant when the White House does it, and acceptable and significant when House Republicans do it, but watching the video of him making the case sure is amusing.


Steve Benen 1:55 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (28)

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It's all fine and dandy that Obama put forth his idea for a budget...I think he tried to hard to find common ground with those for whom common ground is not possible...Whatever.

Now, the Democrats should just cool their heels, sit back, and wait for the House to produce something, no matter how ridiculous. Then ridicule it.

Posted by: bignose on February 14, 2011 at 1:57 PM | PERMALINK

What do you expect? He's from Alabama, the state with the highest rate of "inbreeding" among white people in the country.

Posted by: TCinLA on February 14, 2011 at 1:58 PM | PERMALINK

republican math. the party leadership handed sessions the script and he read it perfectly (almost). the white house could have said it was balancing the budget this year and session's reply would have been the same.

Posted by: mudwall jackson on February 14, 2011 at 1:59 PM | PERMALINK

And ridiculous it will be. Here's what Think Progress lists among GOP priority cuts:
The GOP’s proposal includes a slew of cuts to important programs, agencies, and investments, and would be detrimental to job creation, education, and scientific research. But they also specifically zero out many programs, cutting their funding entirely, including:

- High speed rail investments ($5 billion)

- COPS Hiring (supporting local law enforcement) ($298 million)

- High School Graduation Initiative ($50 million)

- Weatherization assistance program ($210 million)

- National Park Service climate change monitoring and response ($4.5 million)

- Corporation for Public Broadcasting ($86 million)

- Green Jobs Innovation Fund ($40 million)

So it is STILL mainly an attack on anything that stops people from using too much fossil fuel. That is their one and only priority, even a monomania with Republicans. Oil, oil, more oil. The Koch Brothers are definitely getting what they paid for with this House....

Posted by: jjm on February 14, 2011 at 2:00 PM | PERMALINK

Well this is just standard operating procedure for the 2+2=7 crowd. How completely fucking dumb can you be argueing that 1 trillion dollars in budget savings just isn't as good as 1 trillion dollars in budget savings.

Posted by: Gandalf on February 14, 2011 at 2:01 PM | PERMALINK

Where was the moderator? Did s/he point out the absurdity?

Posted by: CDW on February 14, 2011 at 2:01 PM | PERMALINK

MAYBE SESSIONS CAN DEBATE HIMSELF ON THE BUDGET.

Maybe Sessions should go fuck himself on the budget. Truly, I don't know why Obama bothers. He offers up yet another olive branch to the Republican nut House, this time in the form of a rightwing Budget proposal. It's not like they will accept and approve of anything that comes from the White House.

Posted by: ckelly on February 14, 2011 at 2:04 PM | PERMALINK

Sessions probably should debate himself over this, at least then SOMEONE would understand what he's talking about.

I certainly can't.

Guess I'm not enough of a cunning linguist to understand the master debater.

Posted by: Mitch on February 14, 2011 at 2:08 PM | PERMALINK

Well, I would have to agree with Little Jeffy on one thing -- his 73-point IQ is better than Seanie Vannity's 73-point IQ.

Posted by: Bo on February 14, 2011 at 2:09 PM | PERMALINK

Republicans are just dumb in this era. While I believe some are dumb by choice for far too many it seems to be a genetic defect.

Posted by: Silver Owl on February 14, 2011 at 2:11 PM | PERMALINK

And tomorrow the Daily Show will cut him a check for $100 for the bit he wrote for them, and Jon Stewart will be wearing a neckbrace from the whiplash take.

Posted by: Steve Paradis on February 14, 2011 at 2:11 PM | PERMALINK

The most important question - Did the CNN interviwer take him to task for this obvious bit of hypocrisy?

The press has an obligation to bring these issues to light, to expose corruption and to expose stupidity. So how did she do?

Or did she just show her own stupidity?

Posted by: Vandal on February 14, 2011 at 2:18 PM | PERMALINK

I think Sessions needs some more math sessions.

Posted by: c u n d gulag on February 14, 2011 at 2:21 PM | PERMALINK

Too bad much of America will never hear about the Obama budget.

Posted by: Ron Byers on February 14, 2011 at 2:22 PM | PERMALINK

The fact is, the Republicans can never come up with enough cuts to make the 1 trillion dollar mark for next year's budget. They know it and Obama knows it. They will have to propose and pass a budget that will be higher than the budget that Obama proposes, if they hope to remain politically viable in 2012.

Back in the 1980's it was a masterful myth that the Reagan deficits were the fault of a Democratic Congress forcing him to spend more money than he requested. It was perpetuated by reports of increases in spending on programs like education that were put in by the Democrats, but cuts to proposed defense spending were never mentioned. The facts were, for those who bothered to look, that the spending authority passed by Congress was actually slightly less than what Reagan called for, in terms of actual dollar amounts. The only real difference between Democrats and Republicans was where the money was spent, not how much. Since the meme of "big spending" Democrats is already working against him, the only way Obama can come out even on this is if he proposes a budget that he knows will be smaller than what the Republican controled House will actually be able to pass. In the media battle between the facts and the meme, the meme will win out eventually (with Fox News giving it a big push), but enough people will be aware of the facts to keep Obama competitive.

Posted by: majun on February 14, 2011 at 2:23 PM | PERMALINK

I'm not sure why the far-right senator thinks $1 trillion in deficit reduction is unacceptable and insignificant when the White House does it, and acceptable and significant when House Republicans do it...

An easy question to answer!

Because we republicans are the good guys in white and when we do it, it is significant and meaningful. As democrats are the bad guys in black, when they do the same thing it is obviously insignificant, meaningless, unacceptable and done with bad motives!

Posted by: RepublicanPointOfView on February 14, 2011 at 2:24 PM | PERMALINK

But literally two minutes later, in exact the same interview, Sessions reflected on House Republicans' proposed cuts.

I'm sure the so-called "liberal media" was quick to point out Sessions' self-contradiction, right? Right??

I know the clowns masquerading as Washington journalists are too lazy, stupid and corrupt to point out the obvious evidence that Republicans aren't arguing in good faith, but seriously, are they so dumb they can't remember two minutues into the past, or so corrupt that no matter what a conservative says, they just "leave it there"?

Sheesh.

Posted by: Gregory on February 14, 2011 at 2:24 PM | PERMALINK

I am assuming the CNN Stenographer... I mean newsperson didnt call him on it

Posted by: lib4 on February 14, 2011 at 2:30 PM | PERMALINK

This is a ten-year budget.

And here it is, the talking point that goes unandressed. Since when has a budget been passed for a 10 year period?

Posted by: flyonthewall on February 14, 2011 at 2:32 PM | PERMALINK

Jeff Session - exhibit #1 for why congress should not cut education funding.

Do we really want everyone to be as dumb as a Senator from Alabama?

Posted by: Winkandanod on February 14, 2011 at 2:50 PM | PERMALINK

Maybe we could just say that the debt and the deficit are "structural". That seems a good enough reason to ignore 10% unemployment.

Posted by: Bulworth on February 14, 2011 at 2:57 PM | PERMALINK

Quoth Scott Evil: "Ass."

Posted by: toowearyforoutrage on February 14, 2011 at 3:13 PM | PERMALINK

Which weighs more: a pound of lead, or the pound of feathers in Sessions' head?

Posted by: Todd for VT House on February 14, 2011 at 3:24 PM | PERMALINK

Once again...apologize..politicians..here.

Posted by: martin on February 14, 2011 at 3:28 PM | PERMALINK

And here it is, the talking point that goes unandressed. Since when has a budget been passed for a 10 year period?

As the Constitution says you can't budget for the military for more than two years, the Tea Party should be all over this!

Posted by: martin on February 14, 2011 at 3:50 PM | PERMALINK

Jeff Sessions obviously goes hunting too often with Dick Cheney. And this is the top Republican Senator on the Senate Budget Committee? Was a trained chimpanzee unavailable? Maybe we should give out the annual Darwin Awards in the House and the Senate and limit the common folk to competing for parts in the next "Jackass" film.

Posted by: max on February 14, 2011 at 4:29 PM | PERMALINK

Cutting in Britain too!

Posted by: Mike on February 14, 2011 at 6:14 PM | PERMALINK

Well, the GOP cuts are all in special-issue South Carolina currency!

Posted by: Quaker in a Basement on February 14, 2011 at 6:58 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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