Tea Partyists Cheer When They Learn They Are Being Held Responsible for U.S. Credit Downgrade

Dave Weigel compares this incident to a caught-on-tape moment from a year or so ago when tea partyists at an Americans for Prosperity meeting cheered when they learned that the United States would not be hosting the 2016 Olympics:

S&P Cites Tea Party’s Extortion Politics, Which It Calls ‘Political Brinkmanship,’ in Downgrading U.S. Credit Rating

In explaining why it was lowering the U.S. credit rating late on Friday, Standard & Poor’s singled out tea party obstructionism on the economy: “The political brinkmanship of recent months highlights what we see as America’s governance and policymaking becoming less stable, less effective and less predictable than what we previously believed,” said S&P, one […]

McConnell on Extortion Politics: Debt Ceiling Was a Hostage ‘Worth Ransoming’

I think some of our members may have thought the default issue was a hostage you might take a chance at shooting. Most of us didn’t think that. What we did learn is this — it’s a hostage that’s worth ransoming. And it focuses the Congress on something that must be done.

- Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell

Extortion Politics: Koch Brothers Operative Confirms That Tea Party in Congress Is Not There to Negotiate

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Like you, I’m sick to death of the debt ceiling crisis, but before we move on, there was one moment in the debate in the media that requires attention. On MSNBC’s “Hardball” Monday, Matt Kibbe, a longtime Republican Party operative who is the president of Freedomworks, the Koch brothers-funded tea party astroturf group, confirmed to Chris Matthews that members of the tea party in Congress are not there to negotiate — in other words, to govern. They are not there, he says, “to cut deals,” which means, by default, they are there to use the politics of extortion to impose their will on the American people. Where is that in the Constitution?

Transcript, starting around minute 5:00

Raw Deal: 28 Tea Party Caucus Members Voted Against Debt Ceiling Bill

As has been noted here before, one of the tea partyists’ sacred campaign pledges — along with not raising taxes or voting for debt ceiling increases — was that they would “fight efforts to use a national crisis for political gain.” But that was 2010. In 2011, they broke that pledge — big time — […]

Krugman: Obama-Tea Bagger Budget-Ceiling Deal Will Kill Jobs

On ABC’s “This Week” yesterday, Nobel Prize winner economist Paul Krugman predicted higher unemployment as result of the deal tea baggers in the House extorted from Pres. Obama over the weekend: Partial Transcript:

Welcome to the Era of Extortion Politics

By manufacturing the crisis over the extension of the debt ceiling for their own political gain, tea bagger Republicans not only broke one of their many sacred campaign pledges to voters last year, they also managed to regress American politics farther than ever from their constitutional ideals by ushering in a new era of what […]

Pelosi on House Floor: Boehner ‘Chose to Go to the Dark Side,’ Is Leading US to Default

Give ‘em hell, Madame Speaker: “Let me repeat. And I repeat, he chose to go to the dark side by putting forth a bill that he himself told his Members [it] would sink in the Senate—and I add, lead to default, lead to default.”- Speaker Nancy Pelosi House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) accused Speaker […]

Bitter Friday Fun Break

Time to laugh in the final hours of life as we knew it before Congress said, “Hold my hand. We’re jumping!” and took us all over the cliff of welshing on America’s debt, which they — Republicans included — authorized when they voted to spend all that money. As we call our collective Visa companies, […]

Boehner Wept – Again

New York Times: “He wasn’t sobbing, but he definitely teared up.”- Speaker Boehner’s spokesman At a meeting of the House Republican freshmen and their leaders on Wednesday, there wasn’t a dry eye in the room — including the speaker’s. Representative Martha Roby of Alabama had just finished reading an e-mail of support from a one-time […]