Monday, May 11, 2020

True To Form

Steve Schmidt lays down a righteous rant in a series of nine tweets, the eight of which is
Schmidt is a member of The Lincoln Project, a group of Never Trump Republicans which in its mission of preventing Donald Russia's reelection has produced several videos the past few months,  including this powerful one:

As clear as it is that The Lincoln Project is currently doing God's work, a Chicago lawyer (albeit not quite the same verve as "Philadelphia lawyer") reminds us
One of the constants through the decades of GOP ideology is the intent to cut earned benefits and we learned yesterday

While no one in the administration is advocating immediate cuts, the unease among senior Trump advisers about federal spending comes as the White House halts talks with Congress on additional emergency measures to rescue a U.S. economy facing its worst crisis in generations.

Some White House officials have gone as far as exploring policies such as automatic spending cuts as the economy improves, or prepaying Social Security benefits to workers before they become eligible, although these measures are unlikely to advance given the political stakes, said these officials and advisers, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of internal deliberations.

Now that the GOP has satisfied most of its priorities (Democrats almost none) in the first two stimulus packages, up comes a concern about federal spending.  (Usually Republicans wait until there is a Democratic president, but the early bird catches the worm.) In the manner of gambling that next winter Buffalo will get more snow than will Miami, it is a safe bet that none of these advisers wringing their hands about the deficit or debt will give a thought to defense spending.

Republican state governments are exploiting the coronavirus to advance their own priorites, In Iowa, a form has been developed for employers to report unemployed claimants who have refused legitimate job offers. Ohio now has a web page for employers to report “employees who quit or refuse work when it is available due to COVID-19,” which makes them ineligible for state unemployment.

Still in Columbus, Governor Mike DeWine, beloved by the "liberal media" because he is one prominent Republican who would prefer people not die

announced the cuts Tuesday — condensed into less than two months – while adding that he will not immediately tap the $2.7 billion rainy day fund to offset reductions.

Among the cuts, basic state aid for K-12 schools will be reduced by $300 million. That’s a 6% cut of the total annual funding for public, charter and private schools.

Medicaid health care for the poor will be cut by $210 million, with higher education targeted for a $110 million reduction. Other agency spending will be lopped by $100 million, with $55 million in unspecified cuts also targeted at other education spending.

First things first, and the first is to defeat the President for whom the rising death toll from Covid-19 represents a battle won. But that, as mathematicians put it, is necessary but not sufficient. There are policies which will need to be reversed and, as Charlie Pierce has put it, "Republicans are gonna Republican."

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