Villager Howard Fineman is just tickled at the thought of President Obama and Bill Clinton working together to sell that Grand Bargain deal on which the Beltway elites have turned their laser-like focus. They want it the same way they want their best friend's nanny, or the new BMW. They want, want, want! They must have! As to the little people, let them eat cake!
WASHINGTON -- Presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton are turning into the most watchable buddy-buddy road show since "Starsky and Hutch." All they're missing are platform shoes and a Gran Torino.
Next week they will travel together to Florida, Ohio and Virginia, as Clinton tries to infuse his explanatory magic into Obama's campaign-trail pitch in the final days of a grueling 2012 race.
But as attention turns -- even before Election Day -- to the dreaded "fiscal cliff" looming at year's end, it's becoming clear that Clinton's sidekick duties will not be over on November 6 if Obama wins.
If the current president gets the chance to try to fashion a post-election deal, he'll need Clinton's help in selling it to fellow Democrats.
White House staffers are already working overtime on the details of various potential deals; corporate America is begging for -- demanding -- prompt action to avoid massive tax increases and draconian "sequestered" spending cuts on January 2.
And of course, what corporate America wants, corporate America gets!
Administration officials argue that they will be in a better position to make a deal with the post-election Congress than a Romney proto-presidency would be.
Obama long ago signaled willingness to take on his own party by countenancing entitlement cuts. Romney and his running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), are irrevocably committed to not raising income tax rates on anyone, and not raising the overall tax burden.
Since the essence of any deal would be concession on both sides of the ledger, Romney's first act as president-elect would require picking a tax fight with the Tea Party and perhaps Ryan.
Meanwhile, Obama's staff and advisers inside and outside the White House -- many of them former staffers for Bill Clinton -- are looking at options. If their boss wins, talks will begin immediately.
"I don't see Clinton sitting in on the negotiations," said a source who is very close to both men. "Budget talks are incredibly detailed and exhausting. You have to be totally immersed, and the president has to take the lead. I don't see Clinton in that process.
"But if we get a tentative agreement, I expect that the former president will be asked to help sell it, and I am sure that he will," said the source, who asked for anonymity to frankly discuss both men. "Nobody could do it better."
Sorry, Bill. You're a charming guy, you really are. But fool me twice, shame on me! This deal is only a “bargain” to millionaire politicians. We're not interested in sacrificing ourselves or our children on the altar to the deficit gods. Nope. Particularly when cutting government services during a recession is a surefire way to stall a recovery, just like 1937 when FDR gave into the Republican insistance on deficit reduction.
Those who do not learn from history, etc.