Krauthammer’s Take

by NRO Staff

From Monday night’s Fox News All-Stars.

On the “Krauthammer plan,” a short-term debt ceiling extension allowing more time for larger reforms that has become a centerpiece of Speaker Boehner’s proposal:

Modesty prevents me — but not you! — from calling it that. Look, this has been out there. It’s so obvious. It allows the Republicans to get an immediate cut in spending. You match it with a six-month [debt-ceiling] extension. So it’s a two-stage process. And you use the six months to have serious negotiations over the two ways to really reduce the debt — entitlement reform and tax reform.

On the supposed $2.7 trillion in savings from Harry Reid’s deficit reduction proposal:

The number he gives in cuts is a complete deception and a phony. The $1 trillion savings on surge-level [spending] in Iraq and Afghanistan is a fiction. Nobody advocated it. It wasn’t going to happen. We weren’t going to spend it.

I’m told there’s an extra $10 billion in here of savings from not invading Normandy a second time.

On the announcement that President Obama would give a primetime televised address:

The reason he’s doing this is because three nights ago he was on television summoning the leaders of Congress to a meeting the next day, like King Henry summoning wayward dukes to the castle. He has that meeting. Boehner decides, ‘We don’t need the president anymore. We’re going to work this out in Congress.’ And they [the congressional leaders] were close to a deal on Sunday.

I think the president is speaking tonight because he’s gone from emperor to bystander in three days, and he wants to be at least in on it. This is going to have to be resolved. And he doesn’t want it to appear as if it was resolved in spite of him and without him. …

Look, the date he chose as a drop-dead date — ‘The debt ceiling extension has to go until Election Day.’ It’s a political date. It has as much relation to real economics as the surge withdrawal date in Afghanistan [has] to any military reality — none whatsoever.

It’s not an economic date. It’s a date which will help him get through the election without having to answer questions all the time on debt and how he’s increased it by $4 trillion.


From the Fox News post-speech All-Star Panel.

On President Obama’s speech:

Well I thought I was cynical – until I heard that speech. It was purely partisan. It was meant as a campaign speech. …

It was a speech from yesterday. It has nothing to do with the current negotiations. He’s pushing the “balanced” approach — a word which he knows is tested by his pollsters as appealing to independents… [yet] the Democrats in the Congress have already accepted that it [the debt-ceiling deal] is only going to be about cuts.

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