Krauthammer’s Take

by NRO Staff

From Special Report with Bret Baier | Thursday, March 29, 2012

On President Obama’s call yesterday to end tax subsidies for oil and natural gas producers:

This is truly staggering cynicism.

Number one, when he was in the Senate, Obama supported the subsidies he is denouncing today. When our own Ed Henry asked Jay Carney about that, Carney had no answer. He was looking for a hole to hide in.

Second, the Congressional Research Service showed in March of 2011 [that] if [ending the tax preferences] will have any effect on the gas prices, it will be to increase the price. The president is pretending he is trying to lower the gas prices.

Lastly, it is a trivial effect. If you collected this subsidy… for the next 100 years, it wouldn’t cover four months of deficit spending under the administration.

Here he is standing up in the Rose Garden saying “I am for all sources of energy.” This is three days after the EPA issued a regulation that was overlooked in all the coverage of the Supreme Court and Obamacare. It’s a regulation which means the end of the building of any new coal-fired plant in America ever. It’s the end of the coal industry — in time — as the old plants age. Millions out of work, the coal industry will shut down in time, raising electricity rates and destroying a great natural resource we have.

Of course, if you are Obama, who needs coal? We have algae.

On the common view that Obamacare is in trouble because Solicitor General Donald Verrilli did not effectively argue the government’s case in Supreme oral arguments:

This guy — he wasn’t thrown under a bus, he was thrown under a tractor. The problem was not the solicitor general. The problem was that he didn’t have a case. If you have a court that accepts the premise, as a lot of liberals don’t, that we have a government with enumerated powers, there is no way to expand the Commerce Clause to include the individual mandate. And that is what the solicitor general has to argue.

It’s a case he couldn’t make. But no one could have. You blame him because you don’t want to admit the fact that you had an extremely weak case.

On the recent string of prominent Republicans to endorse Mitt Romney:

[The] rush of endorsements — President Bush [41] today, yesterday Marco Rubio, Jeb Bush, and just about everybody in the “establishment” — is a message not to the voters but to the candidates: It’s over….

The candidates admitted — Santorum and Gingrich — they can’t win themselves. And they admitted their only objective is to block Romney and to have a contested Tampa convention, which Marco Rubio explained last night, I think cogently, would be a disaster.

So for the good of the party — what they are hearing from the elder statesman, the up-and-comers, and everybody in between — is: “Step out. Do it for the party…”

On whether Romney’s latest endorsements might bolster Newt Gingrich or Rick Santorum’s claim that they are running against the party “establishment”:

It isn’t as if they haven’t had a chance to go against Romney and the establishment. They have been at it since Iowa. So three months in and Romney has about half the delegates he needs. The others are trailing. None of the others has any chance — they’ve admitted they have no chance of getting the nomination on their own….

He [Santorum] has to think of the future. He has a future. He probably will run again in 2016 if the Republicans lose. I think he has that in mind. I think he might step aside graciously if he doesn’t win in Wisconsin.

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