Because really, all Obama cares about is getting reelected. He doesn’t want to talk about the very real trail of human damage his lack of leadership leaves in his wake. He doesn’t care that he continues to empower the Tea Partiers and the fundie extremists by handing them whatever they want — apparently he’s too busy daydreaming about himself as the New Reagan. I don’t even think it’s incompetence. This piece of shit deal passed because these are the policies he wants:
Democrats managed to jettison the policy rider aimed at defunding Planned Parenthood, but they also caved to $6 billion more in overall spending cuts than they previously said they would tolerate. And the final stop-gap spending bill included language preventing D.C. from using tax dollars for abortions.
So far, the media spotlight has focused most intensely on Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and his high stakes balancing act of trying to please his Tea Party base and corral his unruly conference without angering coveted independent swing voters who decide elections and preferred a deal over a government shutdown. In the end, however, Boehner kept his poker face all week and with $39 billion as the final figure, and ended up surprisingly close to his $40 million spending target.
President Obama, who launched his re-election campaign earlier this week, will face some serous fallout. His liberal base, which is still smarting from the lame-duck tax cut deal Obama struck with Republicans in December, will inevitably say he gave up too much ground in reaching a deal and kept his hands too clean in the process — wanting to appear as the “grown-up” and the “referee” — all the while bemoaning being forced into that position by recalcitrant Congressional leaders.
“This feels an awful lot like the tax cut deal,” Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY) tweeted near midnight Friday. “I gotta bad feeling.”
In fact, in his remarks announcing the deal Obama boasted about achieving the biggest annual spending cut in history, while referencing the tax-cut deal he struck with Republicans in December.
“A few months ago, we were able to sign a tax cut for the middle class … Now the same cooperation will make possible the biggest annual spending cut in history,” he said.
Some Democrats, especially those in the Senate likely were bristling at those words. For weeks, Senate Democrats have been practically begging and pleading for President Obama to get in the game and directly engage in budget talks — to come to their aid and leverage the full weight of his bully pulpit to prevent Republicans from getting the upper-hand.
“The President needs to play a much greater role in these negotiations,” Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) told TPM in early March. “The President doesn’t want to engage in this fight because it’s really, really hard, because we’re up against a government shutdown and we can’t keep funding the government with these stop-gap measures.”
When asked what Feinstein thought would help Democrats gain an upper hand she was blunt: “Presidential leadership.”