As mentioned before, the conventional wisdom on President Obama's decision to backtrack on his previous support for a moratorium on drilling is that he's reaching for some manner of "compromise" -- as the New York Times terms it. Because nothing has been more effective at winning GOP votes over the past year than endless compromising -- right, recently installed recess nominees who were held up for months for no reason?
Well, as you might expect, Republicans aren't exactly feeling it. Here's former Bush White House official Dan Bartlett on "Morning Joe" on Wednesday:
BARTLETT: This is a shrewd move by the White House this announcment they're doing on energy and offshore oil drilling. These are the type of measures you expect a White House to take to help many of those moderate Democrats who are concerned about the vote they just had to take on health care. These are the things they need to demonstrate to their constituents that the Democratic Party does not just cater to the extreme aspects of their base.
BRZEZINSKI: Well, let's talk about offshore oil drilling and this latest move by the President, because...is that going to help, you think, especially in terms of working with the Republicans and get them to support the climate bill?
BARTLETT: I think two things. One, I think it will help key Democrats, Mary Landrieu, people like that, who are in key districts, key states to run for re-election, who need to demonstrate that this administration is listening to their concerns. Now, do I think that this measure here will help grease the path for a climate change bill and bring Republicans on board? No. Republicans, I think, in the Congress have made a calculation that cooperating with this administration at this time is not necessary for them to pick up seats during the midterm elections. So if this is more of a legislative maneuever in order to get a broader bill on climate change, unfortunately this is going to come up short.
OH NOES, WHO WOULD HAVE THUNK IT? Well, for clarity, let's just check in with House Minority Leader John Boehner.
House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) dismissed the president's plan as not going far enough in opening up U.S. waters for exploration.
Obama's decision "continues to defy the will of the American people," Boehner said in a statement, pointing to the president's decision to open Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico waters, while leaving Pacific and many Alaskan waters largely closed to exploration.
"It's long past time for this Administration to stop delaying American energy production off all our shores and start listening to the American people who want an "all of the above" strategy to produce more American energy and create more jobs," the House GOP leader added. "Republicans are listening to the American people and have proposed a better solution - the American Energy Act - which will lower gas prices, increase American energy production, promote new clean and renewable sources of energy, and encourage greater efficiency and conservation."
I guess the good news is that I don't hear a "Hell no, we won't?" Sometime-Alaska governor Sarah Palin also posted this tangle of utterances to Twitter:
Rep.Boehner spot-on Obama goal=cram thru job-killing, energy-depleting, burdensome Cap & Tax scheme on heels of Obama's new"pro-drilling"msg
Anyway, I guess at some point, the New York Times will reveal the mystery of who Obama "compromised" with!