Tea Party Hobbits Win?

Pundits seem to think that the Tea Party is a big winner in the debt-ceiling deal.

Tea party: There were major questions coming into the 112th Congress about who would blink first — the largely establishment-aligned leaders of the new Republican House majority or the tea-party-aligned freshman members. We got our answer to that question late Thursday as House Speaker John Boehner was forced not only to postpone his compromise bill but ultimately to add conservative sweeteners to get the 217 votes he needed. (He got 218.) The tea party — inside and outside Congress — will almost certainly be emboldened by the result of this fight.
How the Tea Party ‘hobbits’ won the debt fight...
The reported debt-limit deal appears to be a victory for the Tea Party. It includes around $1 trillion in spending cuts and creates a special committee of Congress to recommend cuts of $1.2 trillion more. If Congress does not approve those additional cuts by year’s end, automatic spending cuts go into effect. The package sets an important new precedent that debt-limit increases must be “paid for” with commensurate cuts in spending. According to Sen. Rob Portman, a former White House budget director, if we cut a dollar of spending for every dollar we raise the debt limit, we will balance the budget in 10 years — something that even the Paul Ryan budget would not achieve. And all this is accomplished with no tax increases.
The tea partiers pride themselves on adhering to the Constitution, which was intended to make political change difficult. Yet in this deal they've forced both parties to make the biggest spending cuts in 15 years, with more cuts likely next year. The U.S. is engaged in an epic debate over the size and scope of government that will play out over several years, and the most important battle comes in the election of 2012.

Tea partiers will do more for their cause by applauding this victory and working toward the next, rather than diminishing what they've accomplished because it didn't solve every fiscal problem in one impossible swoop.
The debt-limit deal relies on gimmicks (see: baseline budgeting, the doc fix), the credit rating is still at risk, and our massive federal debt will continue to grow like a malignant tumor. And there's a real risk of tax increases.

How is this a victory for the Tea Party? I'd say it's a very modest victory, at best.


Linked by the Reaganite Republican (to LCR). Thanks!


If you think this was a good deal for Conservatives, the Tea Party or Libertarians, read this andthis.


This is the largest debt hike in the history of the United States of America! Winning!

Discussion: Memeorandum


  1. I agree; doesn't read like a victory, does it? Debt-ceiling raised; laughable "cuts" made. We need to do better in the 2012 elections; 2010 was a good first step, but we has gots a long way to go.

  2. Nobody is talking about the fact that the deal gets rid of the filibuster for anything coming out of the unconstitutional "Super Congress" monstrosity. I don't call this a win for anybody but the Democrats who want the filibuster to go away every time the GOP gets the reins.

  3. If you think about what the bill actually does, there's certainly a clear winner. To wit,
    - No real cuts before 2012, when they are all easily reversible
    - $2.4 trillion blank check to Obama administration
    - No entitlement reform
    - No spending controls
    - No deficit reduction
    - Nothing tied to BBA passing (making it irrelevant)
    - Another commission to be ignored (like the last one)

    At least the MSM all got the memo to call this a victory for the Tea Party, so the Dems can use it as a talking point for the 2012 selections (eg: "the Tea Party plan didn't fix anything, and caused us to lose our AAA credit rating..."). Scum, all of em. I'm hoping this disaster gets voted down, but I'm not holding my breath... seems like it's just politics as usual in Washington.

  4. This is a sandwich even Satan wouldn't want to eat.

  5. Thinking more about it, though... you gotta have some respect for the Democrats, at least as far as their negotiation prowess. In the end, the Republicans gave them virtually everything they wanted, the Tea Party got ignored, and the Obamanation gets to carry on with business as usual. Moreover, they have managed to get the media to spin it such that they can blame the Tea Party when their spending eventually inevitably leads to a credit downgrade. And, they get to create a new extra-Constitutional entity which can bypass the rest of Congress and all the inconvenience of outdated concepts like "equal representation". They have once again turned a crisis into an opportunity.

    A more jaded person might conclude that the whole "class warfare" demand was inserted into the proceedings just to get enough leverage to end up with a blank check, which was all Obama wanted in the first place. Either way, they are doing something right over there in the Socialist camp, cause they just wiped the floor with Boehner et all.

  6. @Just Me

    This bill essentially forces Republicans to slash defense spending and/or increase taxes. Cuts in defense spending would be okay, if done right, but the cuts will out-of-proportion to cuts in other areas. The law specifies that the cuts will be 50%/50% guns/butter.


    The Dems did VERY well. They should be happy.

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  8. @Nick

    I hope the Tea Party stays strong. Much hard work lies ahead.

    Getting Republicans elected is obviously not enough. We need conservatives who actually have a backbone.

    The GOP won't have a supermajority in the Senate anytime soon, so they will whine about the limits of their power after 2012 and cave to Senate Dems if we don't put fear in GOP hearts.

    We need to beat more establishment Republicans in the GOP primaries. Beating Dick Lugar would be a great victory. None of these old-school Republicans should feel safe.


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