Less than 15 Hours After Winning Senate Majority GOP Started Laying Plans to Grow the Deficit

As I laid out yesterday, Mitch McConnell’s victory lap made it clear he plans to set up ObamaCare — the individual mandate — as a key campaign issue for 2016.

There were another few details from that speech that were very telling.

First, McConnell said he would roll out tax reform — that is, very large tax cuts for corporations. That’s clearly payback for the Chamber of Commerce, which had a very critical role in the GOP’s success, according to this great article from the WaPo.

American Crossroads and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce played aggressively in primaries to boost the candidates they believed could win general elections — including Thom Tillis in North Carolina and Dan Sullivan in Alaska.


For much of the primary, Cochran was sleepy and might have been defeated outright were it not for a late push from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which aired a pro-Cochran testimonial from football legend Brett Favre on his farm in Hattiesburg, Miss.


Despite his corporate pedigree, Perdue was one of the few Republicans running without the backing of the U.S. Chamber. In late 2013, the Chamber’s Rob Engstrom scheduled an endorsement interview with Perdue in Atlanta at 8 a.m. Perdue arrived at 8:35 and did not apologize for being late, according to three people familiar with the exchange. Sitting with his arms folded, Perdue told Engstrom, “I don’t give a damn about the U.S. Chamber.” Perdue put his finger on the table and said, “You’re either going to endorse me right here, right now, or you’re wasting my time.”

Seven minutes in, the meeting was over.


It was Republican former Senate leader Robert J. Dole, 91, who first sensed trouble for Roberts. Amid a tour of Kansas, Dole in May called Scott Reed, his 1996 presidential campaign manager and now an adviser at the U.S. Chamber, with a warning. “There wasn’t the enthusiasm I expected for Pat,” Dole said.

Of course, that’s going to leave a hole in the budget. Eliminating the medical device tax — another tweak McConnell promised to make to ObamaCare — will create another hole in the budget.

McConnell revealed part of how he was going to fill it with his response to a question about the Democrats’ filibuster reform. He noted that the Senate doesn’t need 60 to get things done for some issues. He noted they can use reconciliation and push stuff through with just 51 votes.

The GOP has spent 4 years complaining that the Democrats pushed ObamaCare through using reconciliation. But it took just 15 hours after winning the majority for McConnell to make clear that he plans to push through aggressive ideological legislation using the same tool.

Still, all the cutting in the world isn’t going to make up for steep drops in corporate tax cuts. Which means — as always happens when Republicans are in charge — we should expect the deficit to start growing again.

5 replies
  1. P J Evans says:

    I wonder how many Ds are going to defect to the Rs on these votes. We know that there are some who are reliable in that way.

    • lefty665 says:

      Some, like Warner and Obama, are still talking about bipartisanship and working “across the aisle”. Warner’s dropping hints about deserting. Dems would be better off without him.
      Dems are reaping the harvest of capitulating by sucking up to 1% while screwing 99% of Americans. It will continue paying off for the Repubs until the Dems grow a pair and get shed of the Repub wannabes, especially and specifically including Hillary, $200k a pop from Goldman-Sachs, Clinton. Litmus test, ya can’t be a Dem if you don’t believe in the New Deal.
      “Compromise with evil yields only the appearance of progress. Evil takes what you give it then comes back for more.” Krugman ca 2002.

  2. Anon says:

    I strongly suspect some of this will happen with Obama’s blessing. He too sounded a “conciliatory” note but cited progress on the TPP and other issues as a place of “shared progress” this is significant because trade deals, like the whole “torture” thing, is one area where Obama’s goals match McConnell’s but not Reid’s. That it seems is his gift to the chamber for kicking his own party’s ass and perhaps his gift to McConnell for softening the blow of the Obamacare fight or expanding the patriot act and burying the torture report.

  3. TarheelDem says:

    The whole idea of running up the deficit in the Bush administration was to make elimination of the debt impossible without raiding the Social Security Trust Fund. They are going for the last vestiges of “socialism” in the US budget. And considering that the donkey is dead, those elected officials with a D after their name are likely not to fight. Unless the President wave the trillion-dollar platinum coin in front of them. :-)

  4. lefty665 says:

    DCCC just asked me to sign their “note to President Obama thanking him for all he’s done and letting him know that we have his back”.
    Wonder which of those things he has done they think I should value the most? Domestic spying, covering up torture, escalating war in Afghanistan, droning US citizens without due process, small ball stimulus that leaves us struggling 6 years later, ongoing tax cuts for the rich, trillions to Wall St, screwing up the health care rollout, charging more people under the Espionage Act than all other times combined since 1917, etc, etc, etc?
    It’s been 6 years, wonder when we’ll begin to get that “Change we can believe in” stuff? Maybe Tuesday was it. He never promised it would be change for the better.

Comments are closed.