Over the last few weeks, Meet The Press with David Gregory was becoming an avenue for Republican talking points. And the talking points were not only coming from Republican senators, but from the host of the show, David Gregory himself, prompting me to write a blog called, Is David Gregory a Republican Mole. Well Gregory must have read my post, because on Sunday’s Meet The Press, David Gregory regained a couple notches in the credibility belt. These notches may be temporary.
Gregory’s guest, GOP House Leader, John Boehner was the recognizable deer caught in the headlights. When Gregory demanded an answered to a simple question, Bonehead Boehner stuck to his republican talking points. Gregory however, didn’t relent but kept pressing.
The question is one of merit and should be asked by all reporters conducting interviews with GOP senators and pundits/talking heads, who were conspicuously quiet when the tax breaks were implemented a decade ago.
According to CBO, the Bush Tax Cuts for the wealthy added over $1 Trillion to the deficit over the ten year period. So it is obvious that allowing these tax cuts to expire is the prudent thing to do. GOP doesn’t see it that way and they proclaim their opposition to the expiring tax cut for the wealthy every chance they get.
Okay, fine. You can make your argument Boehner, but if you’re going to propose allowing these trillion dollars tax cuts for the wealthy to continue, how should this be paid for?
That’s the question asked by David Gregory that got the Boehner confused, and when confused, GOP resort to their old talking points to avoid any suspicion that they’re really as clueless as they appear on television. The talking points didn’t work for the Boehner, as he bombed on national television for all to see – well, all except those who have been brainwashed to believe that Reagan’s trickle-down economics really work.
So with that, we present this class on avoiding a simple question.
Avoiding a Simple Question 101
Question Time – Gregory number 1: – In reference to extending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy without a way to pay for them;
“Alan Greenspan, who was on this program last week, chairman of the Federal Reserve, said that’s a wrong idea…”
Method 1: Class, here’s the first step to avoid answering a question. Begin by avoiding the question and stating the obvious. I now present you with Republican congressman, John Boehner’s non-answer;
“The only way we’re going to get our economy going again and solve our budget problems is to get the economy moving, get more people back to work where they care for their own families and begin to expand the tax rolls to bring more revenue to the federal government…”
Question Time – Gregory number 2:
“I’m sorry, but you’re not being responsive to a specific point, which is how you can be for cutting the deficit and also cutting taxes as well, when they’re not paid for?”
Method 2: Next class, you resort to regular talking points. Here again, is the Boehner;
“Listen, you can’t raise taxes in the middle of a weak economy without risking the double-dip in this recession.”
Question Time – Gregory number 3:
“But do you agree that tax cuts cannot be paid for…”
Method 3: Next, you interrupt the question and appear irritated. Look how the Boehner masterfully did it;
“You cannot balance the budget without a…”
Question Time – Gregory number 4:
“Bush Tax cuts are not paid for, is that correct?”
Method 4: Slightly raise the tone of your voice. The Boehner;
“I am not for raising taxes on the American people in a soft economy.”
Question Time – Gregory number 5:
“That’s not the question, Leader Boehner The question…(Boehner interrupts)…is, are tax cuts paid for or not?”
Method 5: Class, don’t appear to be irritated, be irritated, just like the Boehner did here;
“Listen, what you’re trying to do is get into this Washington game and their funny accounting over there. You cannot get the economy going again by raising taxes on those people who we expect to create jobs in America and to get the economy going again…”
Question Time – Gregory number 6:
“I just want to clarify this….. do you believe tax cuts pay for themselves or not?”
Method 6: Finally class, the sixth way to avoid answering a question: Resort to method #1 and avoid the question by saying the obvious. Again, the Boehner;
“I do believe that we have to get more money to the hands of small businesses and American families to get our economy going again, and the only way to get that economy going is to do that and get our arms around the spending.”
So there you have it. A six step process to avoid answering a question as presented by GOP mastermind, John Boehner. Next week, Mr. Boehner will demonstrate how to pull the rug over the American people’s eyes and make them think that going backwards is the only way to move forward.
- The Bush Tax Cuts: John Boehner vs. ‘Funny Accounting’ (swampland.blogs.time.com)
- Rep. Boehner Predicts GOP Takeover Of House Is Possible, But A ‘Challenge’ (mediaite.com)
- On Saving 319,000 Jobs, Or, Legislation Keeps Teachers Teaching (washblog.com)