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In a discussion of whether Republicans actually believe their anti-debt at all costs rhetoric, Ezra Klein reminds the panel that if Romney wins the Presidential Election, that indicates a toppling of the electorate that assumes a Republican House and Senate as well. Klein asserts that with both houses of Congress and the White House under their control, the Republicans have too much invested in the Ryan Budget not to pass it.
Transcript via Lexis-Nexis:
Here`s a provocative idea that Joe Wiesenthal at "Business Insider" wrote about. He basically said, "Look, we have a jobs deficit in this country. We`re mired in sluggish growth. We need expansionary fiscal policy. The Fed isn`t providing what they should be providing."
Karl you`ve written eloquently on that point.
If you believe an expansionary policy, if you think that`s the way out of the mess, if that`s what you`re voting on, you have a better chance of getting expansionary policy, out of Mitt Romney, despite the noises he`s making about austerity, than you do out of President Barack Obama. The reason being all of a sudden the Republican House would be willing to engage in expansionary policy as soon as they had a Republican president. Do you think that`s true?
SMITH: I don`t know. Like I was just saying before --
HAYES: You can`t say that, we`re on cable news.
SMITH: If I firmly believe they were lying and cynical, I would go for that and I would be happy with that. People say all sorts of things to get elected. But what matters in the end is what happens to real people.
I would support Romney and support the House by thinking they would do expansionary policy. But more and more, I get slightly convinced they`re believing their own B.S. and that worries me, right? Once you really start to believe that we need to cut the debt, then you`re dangerous. I mean, as long as it`s just a lie, you`re OK.
HAYES: Yes, this is a great question. Are they bad -- how bad is the faith on this conversation? Because it actually really does matter. Is this completely disingenuous? Or do they now believe it?
KLEIN: Not only do I think they believe it. I think it`s important to, we have a problem. We say Mitt Romney will get elected. What happens if Mitt Romney gets elected, is a Republican Senate and a Republican House. What they`re going to do, I firmly believe this for better or worse --
HAYES: Wait, stop right there, you say if Mitt Romney is elected, Republican Senate and Republican House, you`re saying because the conditions --
KLEIN: Yes, it tips that way. I think through budget reconciliation there will not be a filibuster, because it will just be a budget bill. They`re going to pass the Paul Ryan budget. I means, the House and the Senate spent two years taking vote after vote preparing to pass the Paul Ryan budget, dealing with the political consequences. He`s not going to come in and saying, oh, ha, ha, we`re going Keynesian.
KLEIN: Conversely with Obama, I do know they think about this when we come to the sort of the tax-megadon, the debt ceiling and tax cut expiration, they do think a lot about how to get the infrastructure into that package. They do think about how to get tax cuts in there.
There is a Keynesian divide in American politics today. And while in another world you might see Romney go to short-term tax hits. I do think that congressional Republicans truly believe that the key think they need to do, the one thing to expend political capital on is the Ryan budget. And they will.
HAYES: They`ve convinced themselves that the political case they`ve been making is that debt stands for a symbolic token of the way we`ve lost our way, the way we lost our virtue, the thing that`s accelerating our decline --
KLEIN: They don`t think it`s symbolic.
HAYES: No, no, I know. But they now believe what they`ve been saying.
Anyone who thinks the Tea Party Caucus will walk back their rhetoric to save the economy (or the Republic) isn't paying attention. The House Republicans voted to a person in favor of ending Medicare and turning it into a voucher program. This election is a referendum on whether that should happen.