What Republicans Should Do
The new NBC poll has sent shock waves through the political world. This government shutdown is triggering a disastrous decline in Republican fortunes and has left President Obama largely unaffected.
–GOP approval is down to 24 percent, the lowest ever and a drop of ten points in two weeks. Democratic Party approval is 43 percent, down four percent.
–By 53-31 percent, people blame the Republicans for the shutdown.
–Seventy percent of people say the Republicans put their own agenda ahead of the needs of the country. (Only 51 percent say that about Obama.)
–Two-thirds think the shutdown is hurting the economy. Only 17 percent expect the economy to improve next year. 43 percent expect it to worsen.
–The percent that say the country is on the right track has dropped from 30 percent two weeks ago — very low — to just 14 percent now — very, very, very low
These data indicate that the Republicans are headed toward losing the House and the Senate in 2014 unless they change course.
What should they do?
1. End the shutdown immediately by passing a continuing resolution to fund the government EXCEPT that the subsidy lawmakers get for health insurance should be ended. The public will applaud this and God grant that Obama is dumb enough to oppose it!
2. Agree to the six-week debt extension but demand in return $70 billion of spending cuts (dollar for dollar with the debt increase) AND demand that Treasury Secretary Liu commit to prioritizing the use of tax revenues to pay debt service interest in the event we bump up against the debt limit ever again, ending the risk of default.
3. In the long-term debt talks, demand a dollar for dollar cut in spending for each increase in borrowing. Also seek an end to the Independent Payment Advisory Board in Obamacare — the so-called death panels — that hasn’t had the members appointed yet, repeal the medical device tax and gain approval for the Keystone pipeline.
4. Let Obamacare die of its own troubles. Very few are signing up, and the system can’t work without many more sign-ups. Let it unravel on its own.
Republicans do no service to their constituents by committing suicide.