“Some time ago, President Trump’s team produced a $1.5 trillion infrastructure plan, which was really a $200 billion infrastructure plan with some wishful thinking attached. The president now says he never supported any such thing — “Gary’s thing,” he calls it, referring to Gary Cohn, the Democrat and Goldman Sachs veteran who once served as Trump’s principal economic adviser — and now the president has joined forced with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer on something new: a $2 trillion infrastructure plan, which also is composed mainly of wishful thinking.
Call us bipartisan, but when Trump, Pelosi, and Schumer all agree to spend $2 trillion — without quite deciding what they’re going to spend it on or where the money’s coming from — we start to hear from our inner Patrick Henry. …
Congressional Republicans already have made known some reservations about this plan. In particular, they have preemptively said no to rolling back the 2017 tax cuts, which Senator Schumer insists is a precondition for exploring other options, such as raising the gasoline tax. The thing is already a mess before it has got started.
It is not going to get any better. The infrastructure scheme deserves to die an early and unlamented legislative death. It’s just another variation on Gary’s thing.”
Such has been the dismal reality of the “conservative-populist” coalition for the last 40 years. The disaffected populists provide the votes for Republican electoral majorities by getting whipped into a frenzy by conservative media over fake “social issues.” Meanwhile, the conservatives call the shots and pocket all the policy victories like on the Blompf tax cuts or regime change in Venezuela.
65% of the American electorate supports a massive investment in America’s aging infrastructure – the other 35% are the Right or conservatives and lolbertarians. It is populists and progressives who agree on tax hikes and infrastructure spending and health care and student loan debt forgiveness, but it turns out that it is the Left that is polarized and divided over social issues:
Supposedly, Blompf and Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer have all agreed to stop wasting the time of the majority of the America electorate to work together to pass a bipartisan $2 trillion dollar infrastructure bill which is supported by 65% of Americans:
“The top takeaway is that Trump and the congressional Democrats he met with agreed to a top-line dollar figure for an infrastructure bill. There’s no plan, and no way to pay for it yet, but there is a $2 trillion target. Among the many tidbits that leaked out from the closed-door meeting is that Trump reportedly said $2 trillion “sounds better” than $1.9 trillion, but he also wasn’t having it when top Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer suggested upping the ante to $2.2 trillion.
Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi say the ball is now in Trump’s court to come up with a funding mechanism. “We told him unless he is willing to come up with the pay-fors for this large package, it will never get done. He agreed,” Schumer said. …”
Yeah, well, we all know why this isn’t happening.
Donald Trump won the 2016 presidential election by promising to end foreign wars in places like Syria and Afghanistan, build a wall on the Mexican border, renegotiate our trade agreements to correct massive trade imbalances, preserve America’s entitlements, invest trillions of dollars in rebuilding America’s infrastructure, etc. And yet, none of these things have happened.
Why haven’t they happened? The GOP Senate voted against America’s “precipitous withdrawal” from Syria and Afghanistan. The GOP Senate voted against Blompf’s national emergency to build the border wall. The GOP Senate neutered Blompf’s plan to renegotiate our free-trade agreements and is now balking at even approving USMCA, which is nothing but TPP in drag, unless he does away with his tariffs. Now, it is poised to also block any infrastructure bill that passes the House.
Have you ever wondered what populists are supposed to get out of the “conservative-populist coalition”? If it feels like we haven’t gotten a single thing out of Blompf’s victory in the 2016 election, it is probably because lately we have been getting conned harder than usual by conservatives.
Note: The GOP Congress concerns itself these days mostly with what it can do for Sheldon Adelson and the Koch Brothers like allowing Israel to annex the Golan Heights.