Senator Machiavelli, R., Ky.?

by Kevin D. Williamson

I am beginning to suspect that Mitch McConnell is some kind of Machiavellian genius. We are about to hear Democrats gloating: “We applied enormous political pressure, pulled out all the stops, made the Republicans sweat, and forced them to agree to . . . a tax cut.”

I myself am not super-excited about the temporary payroll-tax cut (because I care more about spending cuts, given that we have a national debt approaching 25 percent of the entire GDP of this planet and endless trillion-dollar deficits), but in the greater scheme of things, it does not amount to much. On the other hand, the hardcore Left hates it, because the Left believes that reducing the payroll tax weakens Social Security. (You know what weakens Social Security? A national debt approaching 25 percent of the entire GDP of this planet and endless trillion-dollar deficits, that’s what.) So the Democrats have cleverly forced the Republicans to do something they’re already inclined to do (cut taxes while ignoring spending) and that the Democrats’ base is going to hate. 

Brilliant. A few more Democratic victories like this and the Republicans may be getting somewhere.