Being unqualified to speak on details of Pres-elect Obama's economic stimulus plan before the new Congress - I know what I read in the paper, and I also know that when we've reached numbers like "$700 billion" we have reached a level no one really can comprehend - I am interested in a report on "negotiations" between the Obama camp and Congress. When I first read about this, I thought, what leverage does Congress have in all this?
Then, it occurred to me. Obviously, Democrats have to cave in to every whim and fancy of the most unpopular Republican President in our history, because otherwise people might say bad things about how partisan they are. They win points, however, by standing up to an incredibly popular soon-to-be incumbent Democratic President, who is offering the American people an opportunity to lessen the damage and pain from the train-wreck of the Bush years.
Rather than sit and negotiate - and try to get Republicans on board - Obama should simply have drawn up a bill, had it introduced to Congress, let them vote on it up and down, and then if it failed, held a little presser saying the combination of Republican intransigence and Democratic ineptitude has led to the demise of a bill meant to help the American people. The outcry from the people might have been enough to get another, similar, bill passed without much fanfare. Obama is being far too deferential to the stupid Democrats in Congress and the obstreperous Republicans by holding "negotiations." Screw the negotiations. Play nice on stuff that doesn't matter all that much. Put and keep the Republicans in their place, the minority.
The politics of this thing is really maddening.