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If Barack Obama isn’t far enough left for the far-left, the far-left has nowhere to go. As painful as it may be for the president to knowingly alienate his loyal base, the alternative is far more painful. If the economy tanks any further, Obama has zero chance of getting re-elected in 2012 and he knows it. Extending the hated tax cuts are a vital measure towards fueling a recovery, and you don’t have to go any further than the president’s chief economic advisor Larry Summers to understand the truth of that statement. Here’s what Summers had to say about extending the Bush-era tax cuts, from the AP story:
[I]f the measure isn’t passed soon, it will ‘materially increase the risk the economy would stall out and we would have a double-dip’ recession. That put the White House in the unusual position of warning its own party’s lawmakers they could be to blame for calamitous consequences if they go against the president.
The far-left, which is so committed to the idea that redistributing wealth is the cure for all that ails us, won’t pay any more attention to Summers than it has to the president. On the other hand, hardcore conservatives understand that the president’s economic guru speaks the truth. They can be expected to struggle mightily to reduce the spending elements contained within Obama’s compromise measure: the extension of unemployment benefits and spending more on stimulus measures. Yet, when push comes to shove, the Right will likely approve the best deal it can wrangle from the president, simply to avoid any further economic horror. In doing so, conservatives will hand Barack Obama a gift he hasn’t earned: a path toward economic recovery that will provide Obama a glimmer of hope in the 2012 elections. Ultimately, Barack Obama will face a very odd situation when re-election time comes around. The base that idolized him will have abandoned him, even as his hated ideological enemies provide him with the tools to get America’s troubled economy back into motion.
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