The Corner

Rove: GOP Has ‘Lost the Optics’ in Payroll Debate

Former Bush adviser Karl Rove said on Fox News this evening that he agrees with the Wall Street Journal editorial suggesting that Republicans have “thoroughly botched” their handling of the ongoing showdown with Democrats over the payroll tax holiday extension.

“I think the Wall Street Journal editorial hit it right on the nail, the question now is how do Republicans get out of it,” said Rove. “They’ve lost the optics on it.”

The Hill has more:

Rove suggested that the only way forward for Republicans is to wait for the president to join his family in Hawaii for Christmas, vote to approve the Senate-passed bill which would extend the tax cut for two months, and then make the case that Democratic obstructionism is to blame for the parties being unable to come to an agreement on a full year extension.

“The only way to win it is to sit there and ruin their own Christmases and wait until the president heads off to Hawaii for his, and then lambast the Democrats for having abdicated their responsibility of passing a year-long tax cut,” Rove said.

“There’s only one way out of it,” he continued. “Is to stay in Washington, wait until President Obama gets on an airplane and heads for Hawaii, and then hold a session in the House, vote the two month extension and use the opportunity to beat up on the now long absent Democrats and Harry Reid and the absent president and say look – this is going to not be good for the companies that have to write the paychecks.”

Andrew Stiles — Andrew Stiles is a political reporter for National Review Online. He previously worked at the Washington Free Beacon, and was an intern at The Hill newspaper. Stiles is a 2009 ...

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