“The only thing . . . more nauseating” than the GOP’s Trumpist turn, thunders Republican Rep. Pete Meijer on Substack, is “the capacity of my Democratic colleagues to sell out any pretense of principle for political expediency” by backing MAGA candidates for the midterms in the hopes of running Dems against fringe GOPers.
(Dems are boosting his own Trumpy challenger.)
They argue “that politics is a tough business,” yet “toughness is bound by certain moral limits.”
And while “conventional wisdom dictates that these extreme candidates are less electable,” with “a historically unpopular president . . . and inflation at 40-year highs, less-electable doesn’t mean un-electable.”
“Republican voters will be blamed if any of these candidates are ultimately elected, but . . . Democrats’ fingerprints will be on the weapon. We should never forget it.”
From the right: Manchin hikes will hit everyone
No wonder Majority Leader Chuck Schumer “wants a Senate vote on his partisan tax deal with Joe Manchin as early as this week,” quip The Wall Street Journal’s editors: “The more Americans learn what’s in this tax-and-spend behemoth, the more they’ll dislike it.”
The bill claims it’ll curb inflation, but a key study found its “impact on inflation is statistically indistinguishable from zero” through 2031.
Its tax hikes on businesses might “slow” inflation by fueling recession, but “tax policy should be working in the opposite direction,” encouraging investment to avoid a slowdown.
And many of the plan’s tax hikes will hit those earning less than $400,000 a year (breaking President Biden’ 2020 campaign promise). Indeed, they’ll sock “nearly every American.”
Libertarian: Gov’t students loans have failed
When the Federal Direct Student Loan Program began in 1994, the government figured “it would generate $114 billion in revenue,” yet it’s now projected to cost $197 billion, “a staggering difference of over $300 billion” — with the public footing the bill, rails Reason’s Emma Camp.
“Income-driven repayment plans,” which limit monthly payments to 10% or 15% of a borrower’s discretionary income, also expose how the program has backfired: It’s driven up tuitions while failing to provide “students with the skills to obtain” high-enough-paying jobs to painlessly repay “modest” student-loan balances.
The program’s “contribution to the dramatic increase in college tuition prices” while falling short on a key goal is enough “to raise concerns,” but its cost overrun of “hundreds of billions” adds “even more cause for alarm.”
Conservative: Pelosi profile in courage
“The chances of the Chinese military” shooting down Nancy Pelosi’s plane if she goes to Taiwan “are not high . . . but they are not zero, either,” notes National Review’s Jim Geraghty.
But she’s been tough on China for decades: “In 1991, two years after the Tiananmen Square massacre,” she and other reps visited the square “and displayed a banner honoring the demonstrators.”
She also opposed the Clinton administration on granting Most Favored Nation status to Beijing in 1998.
Anyway, now “if Pelosi doesn’t go, then the United States will have backed down from a bully, and bullies are rarely satiated by one victory.”
Ukraine watch: Win the war there and beyond
“A war’s outcome is written by its combatants,” argues Lt. Gen. (ret) James Dubik at The Hill, so “how or when the Ukraine war will end remains unknown.”
“Some Western strategists are predicting that even with allied help, the best outcome will be a stalemate,” as “Russia is larger and has more resources than Ukraine” and “can prevent Ukraine from winning.”
But Putin’s “vision and aggression have generated opposition around the world. Whereas he sought to weaken NATO, it has strengthened and will grow.”
Indeed, “the Ukraine war is actually being fought and waged at two levels”: “in Ukraine” and “beyond Ukraine,” to prevent “the kind of world in which force plays an increasing role.”
“The war at both levels is worth fighting. And both, worth winning.”