Changing 30 years of bad policy is hard work, which can’t be undermined by Democrats

We’re entering a critical phase in the effort to pass Obama’s budget and to enact his overall agenda. Most progressive are pretty damn happy with the new direction for our nation. It represents the change our nation desperately needs. But, apparently (and not surprisingly), there are some Democrats on the Hill who are nervous. Pathetic.

Here’s a tip for any “senior Democratic aide” who deigns to speak to the press. Don’t use GOP talking points. Yesterday’s Washington Post had an article about Obama’s budget, which quoted a “senior Democratic aide” calling Obama’s budget a “tax and spend budget”:

“Folks are a little skittish. It’s asking a lot,” a senior Democratic aide said. “This is a tax-and-spend budget the likes of which we haven’t seen in years.”

That aide is an idiot. There is so much in that one blurb. Did the RNC write that, because it sounds like it. Real folks in America are beyond “skittish.” They’re really scared. Obama is using his political capital to save the country. It’d be nice if senior Democratic aides and the people for whom they work on Capitol Hill would do the same thing instead of whining to the Washington Post. People in America are experiencing actual pain. It’s not “asking a lot” to fix the crisis. It’s expected. That’s your job. (Note thay you haven’t heard anything about pay cuts or furloughs or losing health benefits or massive layoffs for people who work on the Hill. They’re in a recession-proof bubble.)

I’ve been saying for a long time that the biggest problem Obama is going to have is Democrats. Too many Democratic members, Democratic staffers, Democratic consultants, Democratic-leaning interest groups and lobbyists who are Democrats want to preserve the status quo — and don’t get what’s going on in the country. Change is a scary concept.

That’s why Jane Hamsher is on to something. When we find out who is blocking the agenda, we have to name names whether they are members, staffers or lobbyists. Jane has a post at Huffington calling out the people undermining the pending mortgage legislation: “Mortgage Write-Downs: Why Does Ellen Tauscher Value Banks Over Constituents? Ask Adam Pase.” Tauscher is one of those painful centrist Democrats (who is quite wealthy herself.) She has taken the lead on undoing the legislation to allow judges to reduce mortgage payments, which Chris Bowers explains in more detail here. This is vintage Tauscher and, as Jane explains, Mr. Pase is one of her staffers:

Tauscher’s office also said she hasn’t met with any bankers or lobbyists on the matter, and that may well be true. She doesn’t have to. Adam Pase, the executive director of the New Democrat Coalition which Tauscher chairs, works directly out of her office.

Pase is is a former lobbyist for the Twenty First Century Group, whose client, the Coalition for Fair & Affordable Lending, is an astroturf group, financed by the banking industry, that lobbied on behalf of. . . you guessed it. . . sub-prime lenders.

We’re all probably going to have to do a lot of these kinds of posts over the next weeks and months. Naming names may be the only way to shame some of these people into doing the right thing — that would be what their constituents expect. That is, after all, their job.


On October 27, 2010, Joe was one of five bloggers who interviewed President Obama. Joe is a DC-based political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience at both the state and federal level. Joe has managed political operations and legislative efforts for both candidates and issues-based organizations. For seven years, he was the Director of State Legislation at Handgun Control, Inc. He served as that organization's first Political Director during the 2000 cycle. Joe is a graduate of the University of Maine School of Law. In addition, he has a Masters in Public Administration from Lehigh University and received his B.A. from the University of New Hampshire. Joe also has a fun dog, Petey, a worthy successor to Boomer, who got Joe through eight years of Bush and Cheney. Joe likes to think he is a world class athlete having finished the 2005 Chicago Marathon in the time of 4:10. He has completed six other marathons as well -- and is still determined to break the four hour mark.

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