Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Obama pressuring the GOP, Senate in session and tough on Libya, soft on Syria


Obama getting tough with Republicans. White House photo by Chuck Kennedy
By GARY BAUMGARTEN
Ken Bazinet, correspondent for the Talk Radio News Service in Washington DC tells News Talk Online on the Paltalk News Network that President Obama’s offer to cut billions of dollars from Medicare and Medicaid was not an abandonment of those programs.
Instead, Bazinet says, Obama is trying to force the Republicans into a corner,l because the flip side of that equation is his insistence that they approve tax hikes.
All this an attempt to find a way to reduce the federal deficit – come up with an agreement – before August. If not, the full faith and credit of the U.S. government will be tarnished, because its credit rating will be reduced.
The problem in reaching an agreement,  Bazinet reports, is that the tail is wagging the dog on the House side. Where House Speaker John Boehner is showing a decided lack of leadership, acquiescing  to the Tea Party Republicans, rather than telling them what the agenda ought to be.
On the Senate side, Majority Leader Harry Reid had the members in on Tuesday – giving up their extended holiday recess so that procedural matters could be addressed – making it possible to move forward with negotiations on the deficit and the budget.
There’s a chance, Bazinet says, that Libya may be discussed during this unscheduled session. At the same time, the State Department is moaning about Syria’s continued human rights violations. But Bazinet points out that action in Libya, and the mere issuance of statements in Syria, reflects an understandable difference.
The fall of Gaddafi and establishment of a democratic Libya would help form, he said, a Democratic rim over the top of that portion of Africa. And getting involved in Libya was relatively easy, given the NATO pledge to actually prosecute the operation.
Syria is a tougher cookie, he says, because of the shadow of Iran. But watch Turkey, he says. The Turkish Army is now poised along the Syrian border, ostensibly because of the large number of refugees fleeing there to safety. But also, perhaps he says, as a signal to Syrian President Assad that he is isolated and that his days may be numbered.

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