When You’ve Lost The Koch Brothers . . .

by Stuart Shapiro

It’s one thing for President Obama or for me to decry the Tea Party holding the credit rating of the U.S. hostage for their policy goals, but their initial funders, the Koch Brothers and their organization Americans for Prosperity dong so is an entirely different matter.

Tim Phillips, president of AFP, said the debt-ceiling crisis causes a “messaging” problem for conservatives — if there’s too much emphasis on debt-reduction, Phillips argued, it “becomes easier for liberals” to push a combination of spending cuts and new revenue. (The AFP doesn’t care about the debt; it cares about shrinking government and slashing public investments.)

Phillips added that Republicans ought to avoid being labeled “hostage takers,” which is made easier by the current GOP strategy.

As Dr. Frankenstein learned, however, after you’ve created a monster, you no longer control it.

About Stuart Shapiro

Stuart is a professor and the Director of the Public Policy program at the Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers University. He teaches economics and cost-benefit analysis and studies regulation in the United States at both the federal and state levels. Prior to coming to Rutgers, Stuart worked for five years at the Office of Management and Budget in Washington under Presidents Clinton and George W. Bush.

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