That last vertical line from a usually GOP-friendly polling outfit is one more factor in thinking that the GOP is isolating itself to a truly remarkable extent. No one is winning in this – Obama’s numbers are tanking too, though not as dramatically. The GOP is at their worst level in recorded polling. As Charlie Sheen would put it: “Winning!”
Then the Kochs are distancing themselves from the Cruz strategy that Boehner has adopted as his own, after welching on his deal on a sequester-level continuing resolution. And key business groups, suddenly aware that the GOP is no longer a pro-business party so much as a populist rage-machine, are lobbying hard to end the shutdown and lift the debt ceiling pronto:
The National Retail Federation joined other business groups like the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers in asking House Republicans to relent.
“We strongly support passage of both a continuing resolution to provide for funding of the federal government into the next fiscal year and a measure to raise the nation’s debt ceiling,” the group’s president, Matthew Shay said in a letter to Congress that highlighted economic indicators showing that the shutdown has already hurt consumer spending and depressed consumer confidence.
Some are interpreting Paul Ryan’s op-ed today as some kind of olive branch. Sargent dispenses with that rather efficiently. The issue is not about how to balance the budget in the long term through a Grand Bargain. I’d love that, and would probably be more sympathetic to some GOP ideas on it than Obama’s. But the issue now is the economic terrorism that the GOP is using as an unprecedented lever to re-litigate the last election. Take the gun away from our heads, and lay it on the ground. Then we can negotiate – and if a bigger, better Grand Bargain comes from that negotiation, the Dish will cheer it on.
But first: put down your gun and leave it on the ground. And walk slowly away so we can see you have nothing left to harm the country or the world with.