I’m not sure I even have to add words to this post. Just avail yourself of Erskine Bowles, floated as a potential replacement at Treasury in an Obama second term, the “liberal” half of the Bowles-Simpson catfood commission, singing the praises of Paul Ryan, a year after Ryan rounded up his fellow House Republicans on the commission and denied the votes necessary to pass the deficit plan because they would have been considered a violation of the Norquist pledge, as a tax increase. “I always thought I was OK with arithmetic. This guy can run circles around me,” says the man who would be the Treasury Secretary about the man who, in one scenario, would be the chair of the committee Bowles would be trying to work with.
There’s been a new Bowles that has come forward, a more explicitly partisan one, who criticized Mitt Romney’s tax plan in the Washington Post, etc. But I think you get a more forthright picture of Bowles in these remarks. He’s far more concerned about that rigid number of $4 trillion in deficit reduction than virtually anything else. Where the cuts come from and who they hurt matters less. Just that the deed gets done.
While this appeared on Fox News and some conservative blogs yesterday, I wouldn’t be surprised if a liberal had a hand in putting it out. Making Bowles toxic is not a bad idea at all.