The Corner

Krauthammer’s Take

From Monday night’s Fox News All-Stars.

On the S&P downgrade and President Obama’s press conference:

Look, he’s accusing [the] Tea Party — because it threatened to default — for causing this. He himself said openly he would veto any debt-ceiling extension that wasn’t long enough to get him into 2013. So he was going to veto it over the length [of the extension], which incidentally turned out to be completely irrelevant. He got what he wanted on length and we still got the downgrade.

But here he is accusing others of holding the debt as hostage as a bargaining chip when he himself said he would [do so] himself. So he’s been completely contradictory.

But I was sort of stunned by his appearance today. You ask yourself, why did he go out there? He went out there with the Dow at minus 400. And after he spoke it went down to minus 600. He looked weak, plaintive, and small. … He comes out there and he blames, of course, [the] Tea Party, Europe, Japan, the Middle East, probably God because He’s the author of earthquakes — everybody except him.

today he says ‘I will have recommendations on reducing debt.’ Where was he in December when his own [Simpson-Bowles] commission reported and he ignored it? Or with the budget he presented in February, which increased our deficit and increased our debt by $10 trillion? All of a sudden he discovers the virtues of presenting a proposal. He has put nothing on the table and he blames everybody else. …

One thing about the [congressional debt-reduction] commission: It has an authority to fast-track. That [normally] never happens. That only happens in the [military] base closings where … [there are no] amendments … It is an up-or-down vote. The reason that tax reform is so hard is because every loophole you close offends a constituency. The only way you’re ever going to get it is with this kind of [fast-track, no-amendment] arrangement. It now exists and it ought to be used and it can work.

NRO Staff — Members of the National Review Online editorial and operational teams are included under the umbrella “NR Staff.”

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