4/09/2011

What is in the Budget Deal

WIth the budget shutdown averted, the question is what was the result of all the bargaining. DC's school voucher program is being revived and reauthorized for at least the next five years. I have seen claims of $38 and $39 billion in cuts. Here is a rather telling take from a liberal at the Washington Post:

So how’d he do it?

As I’ve reported, Negotiation 101 tells us that a good negotiator gets the other side to “buy” something your own side doesn’t care all that much about. You keep two issues open and trade them off at the end.

Boehner did have something going for him: a completely incompetent White House. The errors include never having an alternative short-term continuing resolution on the table (letting the GOP’s short-term CR be the only “stop the shutdown” document out there for two days); not stepping in to signal that the troops would be paid in some fashion; issuing an incomprehensible veto threat with no alternative; overestimating Boehner’s need to get the Planned Parenthood rider; and underestimating Boehner’s ability to make this about the most popular issue (cutting the deficit). These major White House errors compounded the error of never getting a 2011 budget done when there were large Democratic majorities in the House and the Senate. . . .

I imagine the Democratic base will be enraged, and liberals should be. They control the Senate and the White House and gave away the store. It doesn’t augur well for them in 2012 budget negotiations, does it? . . .

If this isn’t a rout I don’t know what is.

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