In light of the Republicans’ total refusal to support the Obama bailout pundit, a number of pundits have chastised the GOP for being ungrateful towards Obama’s bipartisan overtures. After all, say liberal pundits, Obama deigned to include substantial tax cuts in the stimulus, even though they don’t work. He did so, they say, just to give the Republicans something they could support.
But if this is true, it means Obama decided to put bi-partisanship ahead of the economy. It’s actually a criticism of the President, suggesting that he cares less about what’s good for the country, than about his own political expediency. If that were true, at a time of national crisis, that’d be an outrage.
Fortunately, we don’t necessarily think this is what happened. Obama’s aides, like Christina Romer, have histories of supporting tax cuts. Plus he campaigned as a tax cutter, so we’ll give him the benefit of the doubt that he included them because he believes they’ll help — not just that they’ll make him friends in the Republican caucus.
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