Dems’ tax scuffle ‘a good fight’

Updated

Let me finish tonight with the fight on the left.

This is a good fight. It’s a fight over values, over what a party believes in, what it cares about, “why” it exists.

The Democratic Party is the party of the little guy. If that strikes you as a cliché, as somehow not true, you’re not paying attention. 

People who care about their aging parents, people who care about good public schools, people who care about helping the sick, who believe in minimum wage laws, who work to improve protections for victims of discrimination - ethnic minorities, gay people, old people - people who really do want to help poor people -  tend to be Democrats.  Not all, of course, but the great majority.

No, they’re not great on everything - certainly no better than Republicans are whole range of things:  ethics, fiscal responsibility, national defense, trade and immigration policy.

But back to this fight over taxes.  President Obama has taken a position and made his argument to support it.  He dealt with the Republicans who said nothing gets by the Senate - nothing to prevent a tax increase for the middle class, no unemployment comp extension, no DADT, no New Start treaty on nuclear weapons, nada until they get their tax cut for the wealthy.

There was another way to go. It was “not” to deal with the Republicans, try and wait them out through next year - for months if necessary - ‘til you hope they break.  

I can understand completely this fight and sympathize completely with both sides. The president believes that if he let the deal go, if agreed to play “chicken” with the Republicans for however long it took, there would be real results in the real world: taxes would rise, jobless benefits would die; the economy might have taken a hit, nobody knows how hard.

A lot of Democrats say they would have taken that risk; they say they “still” would take that risk.

It’s a decent argument from both sides, a Democratic argument.  It’s about people, about the good of the country but especially the little guy, the people getting hit hardest by the economy.

The plain fact, as everyone knows it, is that the President and those challenging him on this, are both fighting for the same people and, yes, the same values.  It’s the other side that’s holding the gun.  The voters have got to decide, certainly by 2012, if they want them to keep it.

Dems' tax scuffle 'a good fight'

Updated