Monday, May 15, 2023

So Very Reasonable

In an otherwise good paragraph in an otherwise good post, Steve M. makes a minor, yet telling, mistake when he writes

In other words, the audience was the contemporary Republican electorate. Why do you think Governor Sununu chose not to run for Maggie Hassan's Senate seat last year? It was probably for the same reason Charlie Baker of Massachusetts -- also a moderate Republican governor with strong support from Democrats -- didn't run for reelection last year: he might not have survived his own party's primary.

I thought it was bad enough when last June former Chris Christie and Donald Trump strategist Bill Stepien characterized a group of Republicans as "Team Normal."  It's questionable whether a few Republicans these days are "normal"- but they certainly aren't "moderate."

And so it was that Jen Psaki (video below) on Sunday interviewed the relatable New Hampshire governor Chris Sununu,  who is one of many Republicans reportedly considering running for President. Sununu is no fire-breathing demagogue, surely would be considered among the "normal," and was labeled a "moderate" by Steve M.

When asked, Sununu stated that he would not sign a bill outlawing abortion nationwide, preferring to leave it to states to establish their own policies, presumably pro-life in some jurisdictions, pro-choice in others.

Sununu maintained that "with training," teachers should be allowed to take firearms into schools and in 2014 vetoed a bill which would have barred firearms on school property He stated "I believe the way the laws are now are pretty good."

Sununu declined to agree to any cuts in defense spending when Psaki turned the interview toward debt reduction. When she mentioned Social Security, he Governor contended it's "really about creating up other opportunities, options for the individual in terms of how they invest their dollars." That's privatization, at least partially, while avoiding the toxicity of the term.

Sununu mentioned "fiscal discipline"- Republican talk for cutting the taxes of the wealthy and slashing the safety net- and remarked "I don't mind increasing the debt limit as long as there are some cuts." He likes Kevin McCarthy's hostage-taking.

The most important pressing issue is lifting the debt limit to pay off bills already accrued. Spending has been approved and appropriated, and we need the money to pay the bills. In October, 2021 . As explained in October, 2021

The debt limit is a ceiling imposed by Congress on the amount of debt that the U.S. Federal government can have outstanding... 

It is also important to note that the debt limit is not a forward-looking budgeting tool that reveals what policymakers think are ideal levels of spending and revenue. Rather, it reflects the spending and revenue decisions debated and enacted in prior years by prior Congresses and Administrations;

If the debt ceiling is not raised, government services would be slashed, unemployment might skyrocket, interest rates would jump, and the stock market might plummet.

Social Security can be gutted, the USA could become a deadbeat nation, and school shootings can continue unabated as long as John Sununu can continue his 90%+ rating with the National Rifle Association. Failing to identify anything he disagrees with Donald Trump on, Sununu can argue only that the 45th President could not be elected again. This is today's "moderate Republican."

When my Master Card bill comes, I'm going to call the bank, advise that I will do as a Republican by imposing fiscal discipline upon myself in the future without paying the current bill. That will go well.


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