Congressional Progressive Caucus backs Pelosi’s decision to cut Social Security

I don’t know how else to read this. Ryan Grim at the Huffington Post (who is doing yeoman’s work in reporting this tussle for the Democratic soul; my yeoman’s emphasis):

Leading members of the Congressional Progressive Caucus are coming to the defense of House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi of California after former Sen. Russ Feingold challenged her commitment to protecting Social Security and Medicare.

“Let’s remember that we are on the same team,” reads a letter being circulated by progressive House Democrats. “We need to focus our efforts on the true targets, which are the 228 House Republicans who voted to end the Medicare guarantee, reduce benefits and increase costs for seniors.”

The letter has so far been signed by Reps. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.) and Keith Ellison (D-Minn.), the progressive caucus co-chairmen, as well as Reps. Jan. Schakowsky (D-Ill.) and Doris Matsui (D-Calif.), who sit on the progressive caucus committee that deals with aging issues.

There’s more in Grim’s report; it’s worth seeing it in full.

But let’s parse this:

▪ “Let’s remember that we are on the same team”:Party loyalty first, progressive principles somewhere down the list.

▪ “Signed by Reps. Raul Grijalva and Keith Ellison”:Raul Grijalva and Keith Ellison support reducing Social Security benefits. These people are not friends of the safety net.

▪ “Reps. Jan. Schakowsky and Doris Matsui”:Same.

Bottom line — the leaders of the Progressive Statement Caucus has made another statement. In effect:

We, your House Progressives leaders, support Leader Pelosi in her effort to roll back the social safety net. We support the Simpson-Bowles Catfood Plan. Party first, that’s us.

Yours in honest self-reporting,

Raul Grijalva
Keith Ellison
Jan Schakowsky
Doris Matsui

I just don’t know how else to read this. Do you?

Diogenes looking for an honest man

Previous posts on this (newest first):

No real progressive should let this one go, in my opinion. It’s potentially the beginning of the end of the New Deal deal.

Thank you, Mr. Feingold for standing up — and to Ryan Grim for tenacious reporting.

Staying tuned,


(To follow on Twitter or to send links: @Gaius_Publius)

Gaius Publius is a professional writer living on the West Coast of the United States.

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