Now, there’s an idea going around out there, and this is a risky thing to do. This was a really risky thing to do but there’s an idea circulating that what Boehner ought to do is get somebody to propose a piece of legislation that repeals the Bush tax cuts and then vote on it, tomorrow, today, whatever, do it today, piece of legislation, move the Bush tax cuts to be repealed, tomorrow, and let it go down to a stinging defeat. Then go to the meeting, “Look, Obama, we put your demand up for a vote, and it lost. What more can we do?” We’re not going to raise taxes in the House. The danger in doing that is what if it passes? You never know what can happen between the time you put it up for a vote and people are targeted and gotten to. It would be a fun thing if it worked out, hey, did you see the vote yesterday on repealing the Bush tax cuts? Didn’t work. What more do you want us to do? What you’re demanding can’t pass. We don’t need to do it that way. There’s no chance, Mr. President, that any tax increase is gonna pass the House right now.
Look, Obama knows that. Obama knows that. The sooner everybody realizes that from Obama’s perspective none of this is about the substance, then the better off and the better informed, the better positioned everybody is going to be. This is not about the substance. Oh, yeah, if Obama could get the substance he wants, yeah, fine, but that’s not what he’s doing here. This is all about reelection. This is all about, at the end of this, Republicans once again, they don’t care what happens to the military, Social Security recipients. All they care about is the rich, corporate jet owners. That’s the game they’re playing.
Hell, Obama couldn’t get a tax increase through Congress when the Democrats had supermajorities in both houses, folks. It was Obama who insisted on the Bush tax cuts remaining in force last December. Obama couldn’t get a tax increase through the House. So he knows what the reality is. It’s also the case that that’s not what this is about. I think Boehner and the boys know what this is about. The problem is that our guys know we got a serious problem that has to be dealt with honestly and in an adult fashion and we’re trying to do it. There’s two different things going on in these meetings. Boehner and the boys are treating this with the seriousness and respect it deserves, and Obama’s not. That’s what’s going on here. That’s why Boehner says it’s like dealing with Jell-O. I mean one day the guy says okay to this and the next day it’s like we never spoke about it. That’s because Obama couldn’t care less. Obama is aiming for no deal.
Now, don’t misunderstand, if he can get a deal with the Republicans caving he’d do it, don’t misunderstand. But if that doesn’t happen, it’s not the end of the world for him, in the way he’s thinking.