Who's Really Injecting Presidential Politics?

Marc Sheppard
At a Capitol Hill press conference this morning, Harry Reid first insisted Barack Obama's "principles of fairness" be considered in any negotiations, then had the gall to blame yesterday's breakdown on John McCain for "injecting presidential politics."

The hyper-partisan Senate Majority Leader implied that House Republicans were on board until McCain met with them yesterday, claiming that:

"The process was on track -- and then guess who came to town?"

Earlier this morning, Chuck Schumer had made similarly unfounded accusations, not coincidentally using the same new marching phrase: [my emphasis throughout]

"When you inject presidential politics into some of the most difficult negotiations under normal circumstances, it is fraught with difficulty. Before McCain made his announcement, we were making great progress. Now after his announcement, we are behind the 8 ball. We have to put things back together again." 

And after yesterday's White House meeting, Obama himself had this to say:

"One of the concerns I've had over the last several days is that when you start injecting presidential politics into delicate negotiations, then you can actually create more problems rather than less." 

In truth, there's been no evidence that anything McCain discussed with them had any impact on House Republicans whatsoever.  They've been working all week on a plan of their own. And yet today, partisan troopers, including Barney Frank and Barbara Boxer, were dispatched to morning television positions to fire off the same baseless accusations, and to chide McCain for "injecting presidential politics."

How great is that? These political geniuses just don't get that anyone accusing a candidate of "injecting presidential politics" is, in fact, "injecting presidential politics!"

Adding to this comic theater was the sight of Reid blaming Republicans in general and John McCain specifically for the current crisis, oblivious to the irony of Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac's best-fed congressional lapdog, Chris Dodd, standing right beside him at this morning's photo-op.  The same Chris Dodd who, as member of the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, followed 8 fellow Democrats voting against the Republican-crafted Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Reform Act of 2005 (S. 190).  The bill would have created an independent Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Agency to oversee both the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac).  The same Chris Dodd who accepted more campaign contributions from Frannie and Freddie between the years 1989 and 2008 than any other member of Congress. 

And the very same Chris Dodd who, as current chairman of the SBHUAC, has not only kept S. 190's successor, S. 1100, on ice in committee -- he's also kept his record $133,900 stipend from the very entities it would regulate.

And yet, it was Republican-led unfettered capitalism that caused the meltdown.

Just pathetic.

To be sure, now is not the time for either side to be laying blame but instead to be offering solutions -- something I must admit to be well beyond my understanding of the problem. But when the smoke clears, so will all of these dismal Democrat smoke-screens and the truth will out.

Dodd's sins are only the beginning, and belly-aching about "injecting presidential politics" won't change that fact.

Not in the least.
At a Capitol Hill press conference this morning, Harry Reid first insisted Barack Obama's "principles of fairness" be considered in any negotiations, then had the gall to blame yesterday's breakdown on John McCain for "injecting presidential politics."

The hyper-partisan Senate Majority Leader implied that House Republicans were on board until McCain met with them yesterday, claiming that:

"The process was on track -- and then guess who came to town?"

Earlier this morning, Chuck Schumer had made similarly unfounded accusations, not coincidentally using the same new marching phrase: [my emphasis throughout]

"When you inject presidential politics into some of the most difficult negotiations under normal circumstances, it is fraught with difficulty. Before McCain made his announcement, we were making great progress. Now after his announcement, we are behind the 8 ball. We have to put things back together again." 

And after yesterday's White House meeting, Obama himself had this to say:

"One of the concerns I've had over the last several days is that when you start injecting presidential politics into delicate negotiations, then you can actually create more problems rather than less." 

In truth, there's been no evidence that anything McCain discussed with them had any impact on House Republicans whatsoever.  They've been working all week on a plan of their own. And yet today, partisan troopers, including Barney Frank and Barbara Boxer, were dispatched to morning television positions to fire off the same baseless accusations, and to chide McCain for "injecting presidential politics."

How great is that? These political geniuses just don't get that anyone accusing a candidate of "injecting presidential politics" is, in fact, "injecting presidential politics!"

Adding to this comic theater was the sight of Reid blaming Republicans in general and John McCain specifically for the current crisis, oblivious to the irony of Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac's best-fed congressional lapdog, Chris Dodd, standing right beside him at this morning's photo-op.  The same Chris Dodd who, as member of the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee, followed 8 fellow Democrats voting against the Republican-crafted Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Reform Act of 2005 (S. 190).  The bill would have created an independent Federal Housing Enterprise Regulatory Agency to oversee both the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae) and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac).  The same Chris Dodd who accepted more campaign contributions from Frannie and Freddie between the years 1989 and 2008 than any other member of Congress. 

And the very same Chris Dodd who, as current chairman of the SBHUAC, has not only kept S. 190's successor, S. 1100, on ice in committee -- he's also kept his record $133,900 stipend from the very entities it would regulate.

And yet, it was Republican-led unfettered capitalism that caused the meltdown.

Just pathetic.

To be sure, now is not the time for either side to be laying blame but instead to be offering solutions -- something I must admit to be well beyond my understanding of the problem. But when the smoke clears, so will all of these dismal Democrat smoke-screens and the truth will out.

Dodd's sins are only the beginning, and belly-aching about "injecting presidential politics" won't change that fact.

Not in the least.