[Deep inside Battle Station GOP...]
"What the hell was that all about?"
"I don't believe it! Do you believe it?"
"No way! If he's gonna give a budget speech, then it oughta be a budget speech -- not a campaign speech!"
"And he shouldn't have the presidential seal up there! That wasn't a presidential speech, it was -- "
" -- a campaign speech!"
"The nerve of this guy! And with Ryan sitting right there in the front row!"
"He invited him! He invited Ryan, and he invited Hensarling, and they had to just sit there and listen to all that...that..."
"All that political stuff! Exactly!"
"When he was supposed to be offering them an olive branch!"
"Exactly! If he thinks that's the way to get bipartisanship, he's nuts."
"The way to get bipartisanship is the way we always get bipartisanship: We push, and he retreats."
"We push some more, and he caves in."
"And then we push some more."
"But this pushing-back business? What's that about? Somebody must have gotten to him."
"It's totally out of character."
"Calling us 'pessimists'? And we're ruining Medicare?"
"Turning our back on 'commitments'?"
"And on the American dream?"
"The nerve of this guy!
"He was supposed to be reaching out -- he was supposed to be showing everyone how much he wants to work with us."
"Exactly! He was supposed to roll over."
"There's still time for that."
"It's just one speech -- he's still got time to roll over."
"You don't think he's finally figured it out?"
"Of course not."
"He still thinks he can reason with us?"
"Doesn't he always think he can reason with us?"
"Except this time -- this time sounded different."
"Which is why it had to be an accident. Or somebody got to him. The unions, or Pelosi, or -- "
" -- NPR."
"Somebody got to him."
"Did you ever hear anyone so political?"
"That's what gets me: Isn't he supposed to be above politics?"
"If you're above politics, you don't go around scaring seniors and scaring college students, am I right?"
"You don't go around scaring parents with sick kids. And you -- "
" -- you certainly don't beat up on the people who create all the jobs."
"We need to lower their taxes, not raise them! And for him to say the tax cuts are all coming right out of Granny's wallet?"
"It's pandering, plain and simple. Nothing but pandering!"
"So now we've gotta go calm Granny down again. I'm tired of calming Granny down -- I thought we were through with that."
"It's nothing but pandering -- it's disgusting."
"Especially if it works."
"You think it'll work?"
"Too soon to know."
"Scaring people like that!"
"Slamming people like that!"
"That's not his job!"
"That's our job!"
"The nerve of this guy!"
Rick Horowitz is a syndicated columnist. You can write to him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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