This makes two embarrassing moments for Democrats this week.
Two embarrassing moments for Democrat Senators that is. I am leaving President Obama out of the running to give the others a chance.
Several top Democrat Senators were getting ready for a conference call with reporters. Without realizing that someone was on the line they began strategizing on how to attack Republicans on the budget. Senator Chuck Schumer (NY) took charge at one point, laying out the best way to trash Republicans to the media. From the Washington Examiner:
Schumer instructed the group, made up of Sens. Barbara Boxer of California, Tom Carper of Delaware, Ben Cardin of Maryland and Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut, to tell reporters that the GOP is refusing to negotiate.
He told the group to make sure they label the GOP spending cuts as “extreme.”
“I always use extreme, Schumer said. “That is what the caucus instructed me to use.”…
Here’s a bit more of what he said about House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, according to my notes.
“The main thrust is basically that we want to negotiate and we want to come up with a compromise but the Tea Party is pulling Boehner too far over to the right and so far over that there is no more fruitful negotiations,” Schumer said on the call. “The only way we can avoid a shutdown is for Boehner to come up with a reasonable compromise and not just listen to what the Tea Party wants. “
Schumer described Boehner as “in a box,” over the budget negotiations.
While I am sure both parties strategize on the best ways to attack their political opponents it is not customary to do it with someone in the media around to take notes. Unfortunately for Schumer there was a journalist on the line. A simple click on the mute button would have prevented this whole problem, but nobody bothered to do that. Instead, Republicans now have the Senate Democrat’s game plan: call Republicans “extremists” and lie to the media about them obstructing negotiations. It doesn’t have to be true – just say it anyway! From The DC:
“Chuck Schumer did us a favor. He exposed their tactic,” House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, Republican of Virginia, told reporters. “You heard his comment. He’s basically instructing his members to deem any spending cut unreasonable. Any spending cut. So clearly they’re not serious.”