How’s that Plan Going, Mr. President?

I was going to write about this story–about a confrontation between Henry Waxman and Barack Obama over the latter’s ineffective negotiating strategy–yesterday.

The president has heard the complaint before. Democrats have accused Obama repeatedly of ceding too much ground to the GOP, especially on health care and the extension of the Bush-era tax cuts for the wealthy. But attendees said the critique appeared to rub him the wrong way on Thursday.

“He was a little testy with the Waxman question. Essentially, Mr. Waxman was urging him to fight more,” one legislator said. “The president reminded folks that he’s the president sitting in that chair and he knows how to negotiate.”

Obama also told the assembled Democrats not to count on more fiery rhetoric from the Oval Office.

“He said, ‘There’s a difference between me and a member of Congress,'” another lawmaker said, paraphrasing the president as saying: “When I say something the markets react, all of society reacts, other countries react. I’ve got to be careful with what I say. I can’t just say it for brinkmanship. I’ve got to say it in a way so that I get what I want said, but I don’t upset markets and so on.”

But I’m sort of glad I waited until after today’s announcement that unemployment has gone up and declining public sector employment is dragging down the economy. Because it makes it all the more appropriate to highlight Obama’s claim that he has a plan.

But Obama responded that he has to be more careful and more considered than that, and that he is executing an existing plan. [my emphasis]

Not only does the crummy economic news weaken what had been a position of relative strength for the President, but it shows that if he’s got a plan, it’s either not working or not designed to work. Obama’s plan–to focus on the deficit–only makes it more likely we’ll see ongoing cuts to public employment.

Is that really the plan, Mr. President?

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Emptywheel Twitterverse
bmaz RT @WerlySportsLaw: .@bmaz @Prof_Holland @WALLACHLEGAL @RMFifthCircuit @IanPGunn @amilst44 we bet thousands of dollars on this right? #payup
1mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Y'all might want to mute me until I'm done tweeting every time Berman mocks NFL's claims of independence. http://t.co/Hlj6TsXf8K
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bmaz @WerlySportsLaw @Prof_Holland @WALLACHLEGAL @RMFifthCircuit @IanPGunn @amilst44 Just waiting to collect. Hopefully from those mopes at @ESPN
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emptywheel Berman mocking NFL claims of "Independent" investigation again. http://t.co/6qFRaJdYOT
4mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel @EdgeofSports Don't think that's true. NFL HAS broad authority there. They just keep far overstepping it.
8mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Shorter Judge Berman: The NFL seems to have a flexible notion of what "independent" means. http://t.co/nSY7eVTwum
10mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz RT @WerlySportsLaw: Court finds that no player that had "general awareness" of ball deflation had notice. #BOLD http://t.co/TAsO2M9JKa
14mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Now that we've Freed Tom Brady, can we also Free RGIII?
14mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz RT @IanPGunn: As @WALLACHLEGAL and I said when we reviewed oral argument transcript, Berman's questioning wasn't devil's advocate.
16mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Remember, Goodell did all this to defend integrity of the game. Cf that team from Washington.
16mreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz Been saying this for years, but it"s once again established that @ESPN's Lester Munson is a dope+doesn't know squat about law in real courts
16mreplyretweetfavorite
emptywheel Berman really harped on this in hearings: Turns out Brady plays better with big balls. http://t.co/R1KNW2Fuar
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June 2011
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