The President's Vision of Bipartisanship

by Pejman Yousefzadeh on February 23, 2010

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As explained by Paul Ryan in a Q&A with the New York Times’s Deborah Solomon:

Your “Road Map,” we should explain, is a somewhat alarming document that proposes, in 600-plus pages, erasing the federal deficit by radically restricting the government’s role in social programs like Social Security and Medicare. The president described it as “a serious proposal.”
Right. And then the next day his budget director starts ripping me and then the day after that the entire Democratic National Committee political machine starts launching demagogic attacks on me and my plan. So when you hear the word “bipartisanship” come from the president and then you see his political machine get in full-force attack mode, it comes across as very insincere.

He seems genuinely pained by what he has called the “obstinacy” of Congressional Republicans and their just-say-no obstructionism.
You know, casting the other side as somehow nefarious and evil and poorly intended is the oldest trick in the book.

Good for Ryan for taking on the Administration’s approach so eloquently, and so pithily. He is right to do so; one would be more impressed with the President’s rhetorical outreach to the Congressman if it were not accompanied by attacks from the Administration, and from the Democratic National Committee. It’s a pity, of course, that people in the media didn’t call the President out for this Janus-faced treatment of the Congressman. Specifically, Deborah Solomon should be ashamed of buying into the Administration’s spin, hook, line, and sinker.

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