Senate Coronavirus Bill Fails, Stalemate Continues

Andrew Donaldson

Born and raised in West Virginia, Andrew has since lived and traveled around the world several times over. Though frequently writing about politics out of a sense of duty and love of country, most of the time he would prefer discussions on history, culture, occasionally nerding on aviation, and his amateur foodie tendencies. He can usually be found misspelling/misusing words on Twitter @four4thefire and his writing website Yonder and Home. Andrew is the host of Heard Tell podcast.

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176 Responses

  1. JS says:

    Maybe, and I’m just spitballing, if he wanted a quick pass to a bill McConnell might have worked with Democrats from the get-go?

    It doesn’t take a genius to see 1200+ bucks that scales down with income and a three month UI package coupled with a trillion in mostly string-free bailouts with no oversight was not going to pass cloture or the House.

    Then again McConnell’s really out of practice negotiating bills that have to pass.Report

  2. LeeEsq says:

    Mnuchin denounced the Senate bill. That’s how ridiculous it was. The bill was horrible. It needed to go down.Report

    • JS in reply to LeeEsq says:

      The cloture vote was what…47-47?

      Okay, McConnell voted against it so he could bring it up. Which meant he had…48 votes for it.

      Rand Paul’s out, which means one Democrat voted present. Which means he still didn’t have a majority.

      And then goes on to call it a “bipartisan bill”?Report

      • LeeEsq in reply to JS says:

        After Trump, he is the Republican I want to go down the most. He is one of the most despicable people in American politics. Ever.Report

  3. Jaybird says:

    Every adult gets $2k, every kid gets $1k. This money is taxable.

    That’s it. How hard is that?

    (Also, the idea that we would bail out cruise ships that were flagged in another country is bullshit. They want a bailout? Flag to the US. Until then, ask Sweden or Belize or wherever the hell you’re flagged for a bailout.)Report

  4. Kazzy says:

    It’s 2020… we can’t get remote voting in the Senate?Report

  5. George Turner says:

    If a relief bill passes, people will be happy with Trump. Nancy and Chuck are not going to let that happen.Report

    • Philip H in reply to George Turner says:

      The first relief bill originated in the House and passed with Republican support (360 Yea votes if memory serves). That went to the Senate, got passed with bipartisan support and signed by the President.

      So yeah, once again, not so much.

      And we are running out of parting gifts to give you George.Report

  6. James K says:

    There’s a New Zealand expression that seems pertinent here: “couldn’t organise a piss-up in a brewery”.Report

  7. Saul Degraw says:

    As Lee points out, the bill was so much of a sop to corporate donors without much substantive aid to ordinary people that even Mnunchin thought it was horrible.Report

  8. Marchmaine says:

    Is there a decent summary somewhere of what the points of contention are?

    Left Twitter is telling me all the things the Republicans want in the bill
    Right Twitter is telling me all the things Democrats want in the bill

    And, honestly… my trust in “just the facts, ma’am” has dug a sub-basement under the previous crater.Report

    • Stillwater in reply to Marchmaine says:

      I’m curious too. I remember telling my wife a couple days ago that McConnell’s request for a $500 billion Treasury-dispersed slush fund was an opening offer which would be negotiated down to about $300 billion (what he wanted all along), but it seems like he’s gone all Michael Corleone on us.

      On the Dem counter-proposal side, my guess is that if you’re inclined to think the Dem “demand” of a massive collective bargaining provision (or whatever) is just too outrageously ridiculous to be believed, I’d caution you to remember that we’re talking about Democrats here. 🙂Report

      • North in reply to Stillwater says:

        Did they demand collective bargaining? I hadn’t heard about it.Report

        • Dark Matter in reply to North says:

          I think it was Warren who was insisting on it, right after she got done insisting that it have student debt relief.Report

          • George Turner in reply to Dark Matter says:

            I should get on this wish-list bandwagon.

            1) It’s critical for the government to quickly dump surplus 5.56, .308, and 50 BMG ammunition into the civilian market as a way to mitigate any weakness in military readiness military due to this virus.

            2) Abortion must be stopped immediately so we can keep our population from collapsing due to the outbreak. We have to focus on rebuilding our numbers.

            3) All illegals must be rounded up and deported so they don’t contribute to the epidemic by handing out free chips and SARses.

            4) Hard hit cities should be sealed off so they don’t become epicenters that spread the disease to real Americans, who will occasionally go into the urban areas on “mutant safaris” because travel to Africa and Asia is shut down.

            5) Homes of the people who die from corona should be burned so as not to have excess units tank the real estate market, unless they’re really nice homes, in which case GOP officials should auction them off to their family members.

            6) All public transportation projects should be suspended because the force people into close proximity, making us vulnerable to future outbreaks.

            7) Vehicles should be limited to one adult person per SUV to reduce the risk of exposure, and car pooling must be banned.

            8) Surplus armored vehicles should be given the militias because the militias don’t have any tanks, and tanks can play a critical role in breaking up crowds of people where the virus might be spreading.

            9) The country must switch entirely back to coal powered electricity and scrubbers must be removed from power plants so that acid rain can eliminate the virus from our streets and sidewalks.

            10) Crossword puzzles should be nationalized so we don’t run out of ways to kill time during the lock down. We only have a finite inventory of new ones and the government must assure that production continues.Report

            • Chip Daniels in reply to George Turner says:

              This reminds me of the quip that conservative radicalism brought us lynchings and Oklahoma City, while liberal radicalism brought us the three day weekend and Social Security.Report

              • George Turner in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                Ted Cruz on Nancy’s wish list

                Emissions standards for commercial aircraft? Wind and solar power? Mandates on corporate board “diversity”? Post Office restructuring? I think she’s also insisting on a $15 an hour federal minimum wage, so many people wouldn’t even have a job to go back to.

                As I’ve said, she has the worst political instincts I’ve eve seen. If she keeps this up 2020 will be like a Reagan Mondale sweep.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to George Turner says:

                Conservative craziness gives us a trillion dollar slush fund for billionaires, liberal craziness gives us clean energy.Report

              • Marchmaine in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                That’s good spin… but leave the Dems pretty open to this:

                During a global pandemic, you subsidize the businesses/jobs you have, not the businesses/jobs you wish you had.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Marchmaine says:

                It’s like defending funding Theranos because, well, it’d be really really nice if we had a company that could test for multiple diseases with little more than a couple drops of blood.Report

              • Stillwater in reply to Marchmaine says:

                Well, sure. The politics of the situation really *are* tilted against the Dems for not rubber stamping McConnell’s bill. So forget about retail politics and focus on the policy the bill contains. Is it good policy? Are there holes in it which need fixing?

                There’s a lot of talk about the Dems obstructing because they want silly pork for their base, but the Dem Senators I’ve listened to on this express more fundamental problems in the bill: funding for states; better funding for small businesses; oversight on the bailout money; and so on.

                Sure, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie want to use this crisis as an entry point to enact all their preferred policies (just as McConnell is using the crisis for his preferred policies – tax cuts and corporate cash), but the lions share of Dems seem to want more money to go to workers/consumers and hospitals/states than what McConnell allocated.Report

              • InMD in reply to Stillwater says:

                One of the reasons party D fails the way it does is a persistent failure to establish itself in these situations as a difference in kind rather than merely in degree.Report

              • Dark Matter in reply to George Turner says:

                More Dems are going for the student loan thing. My impression is they don’t want a bill because Trump will get blamed, want to blame the GOP, so they’re looking for a poison bill that their side will believe.


              • Stillwater in reply to Dark Matter says:

                My impression is they don’t want a bill because Trump will get blamed, want to blame the GOP, so they’re looking for a poison bill that their side will believe.

                We have some wildly partisan people on this site, but most folks are pretty clear-eyed about how politics works, and those folks know that *introducing* a bill constitutes leverage over the other party precisely because the other party, by voting “no”, will be viewed as obstructionists.

                McConnell wrote a bill without Dem input, and in particular input from Pelos. He was playing a game here (as clear eyed people realize), and the game was to shnooker the Dems into voting for what they view as bad policy for political reasons.

                None of the above is political rocket science. It’s politics 101.Report

            • Dark Matter in reply to George Turner says:

              2) Abortion must be stopped immediately so we can keep our population from collapsing due to the outbreak.

              Ohio and Texas have done this, but because it’s not “emergancy medicine”.Report

          • George Turner in reply to Dark Matter says:

            Nancy issued a press release on her third House bill.

            * For our students: Pumps nearly $40 billion into schools and universities, with $30 billion directly provided to states to help them stabilize their funding for schools and nearly $10 billion to help alleviate the harm caused by coronavirus on higher education institutions, while providing them with added flexibility to continue operating during the crisis. The legislation also helps current borrowers with their student debt burden and GI bill benefits. We also bolster SNAP and other initiatives to address food insecurity.

            *For our Democracy: Ensures that states can carry out this year’s election with billions in grant funding for states through the Election Assistance Commission and a national requirement for both 15 days of early voting and no-excuse absentee vote-by-mail, including mailing a ballot to all registered voters in an emergency.

            It’s supposed to be an emergency corona virus relief bill, not an unlimited slush fund for interest groups. Her bill reads like a gift list to the pampered elites.

            She is completely tone deaf.Report

            • Chip Daniels in reply to George Turner says:

              Pampered elites that are hated by Republicans:
              Kindergarten teachers, military veterans, single mothers with children, and most of all, voters.Report

              • George Turner in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                Good luck with that spin come November.

                The co-founder of Vox is saying “Dems have leverage here if they hold their nerve. Market is going to decline 10-20% tomorrow, so Schumer and Pelosi have to be coldly implaccable.”

                Republicans are noting that Dems want to withhold funds to kill people and tank the economy in an effort to “own” Trump. I think everybody knows that Democrats need this outbreak to be utterly catastrophic, with a very high death toll, so they can move the needle on their liberal wish list items. As is often said, Nancy is a ghoul.

                Since she’d never going to put out a bill that has a remote chance of passing, Trump will have to provide emergency relief through other means. The Pentagon has prepared plans for martial law, should that become necessary, so that’s one obvious option.Report

    • North in reply to Marchmaine says:

      Politico has a somewhat badly titled article that struck me as a balance analysis of the “slush fund” allegation if that’s any help:

      • Slade the Leveller in reply to North says:

        It was a good read. The R’s point to investor shunning of companies who got TARP loans as the reason for keeping a lid on the list for 6 months. If we take that at face value for the sake of argument (I couldn’t find anything on the net to substantiate the claim), IMHO half a year is too long. It seems like a point of negotiation. Or, maybe set up a bipartisan lending authority. Half a trillion in the hands of this moron and the guys pulling the strings behind the curtain is too much unfettered cash.

        On the other hand, if we consider that all of the recent success of the American economy has been consumer driven, then perhaps ALL of the money ought to go to consumers.Report

        • North in reply to Slade the Leveller says:

          I would agree that there -might- be an argument in favor of the anonymity -if- this was another financial crisis but it isn’t. Also, as you note, Trump and his party have absolutely zero credibility for administrative or even non-corrupt management and it’s insane to expect anyone to be willing to hand them a 1 billion dollar fund to manage without oversight let alone a 500 billion one. If anything there should probably be more oversight and division of the administrations hands from any money set aside for this rather than less.Report

          • greginak in reply to North says:

            Also, wasn’t a a lot of the crap thrown at TARP recipients by R’s? I certainly remember a lot of that. So it’s “we have to keep the secret or we will trash the people we are giving money to”?!?!Report

            • North in reply to greginak says:

              Yes, I was trying not to point out the absolute raving hypocrisy of the GOP on that matter since it’s a bottomless well at this point.
              And, really, the more important consideration is that if we put that kind of money into Mnuchin’s hands the odds are that much of it’ll be funneled to connected rather than needy industries and no small portion of it will simply be stolen and/or redirected to Trump’s wall.Report

          • Dark Matter in reply to North says:

            One assumes Trump’s hotels are taking it on the chin, so naturally they’ll be first in line.Report

        • Philip H in reply to Slade the Leveller says:

          On the other hand, if we consider that all of the recent success of the American economy has been consumer driven, then perhaps ALL of the money ought to go to consumers.

          Republicans have told us for 4 decades that if you cut taxes to the wealthy and corporations it will trickle down to ordinary folks. In that same 4 decades we have seen hard data saying it won’t. Take the most recent tax cut – before it was enacted the CEO’s of the Fortune 100 all told Forbes they would use the tax cuts to conduct stock buy backs. And lo and behold the did. Airlines took something like 95% of their free cash over the last decade and bought back stock, and now have nothing to fall back on to ride the storm.

          Which means I place zero faith in Republican claims about how and where this money needs to go.

          Give it to consumers and mortgages and rent get paid. Food gets bought. Credit cards and student loans get paid off (unless we do the sensible thing and get rid of student loan debt once and for all). and that trickles UP to corporate profits.

          But to do that Republican politicians would have to admit they have been wrong for 4 decades.Report

          • Slade the Leveller in reply to Philip H says:

            Stock that’s been bought back can be resold. Presto! Available cash.Report

            • You’re absolutely right. Heck, let the gummint offer them really good terms on loans (and use that bought back stock as collateral).

              You want to get us out of the depression/recession that seems inevitable? A debt jubilee for citizens (not businesses) would do that.

              But it would help people who aren’t famous and aren’t connected and (and this is the part that strikes me as vaguely problematic) are better off than people who don’t have a lot of debt.Report

              • InMD in reply to Jaybird says:

                I’m not sure our political class has the mental capacity to comprehend this, even now. If this can’t be done without throwing a massive unearned cut to lenders and big business or via some box checked parochial interest then what hope do we have? Seriously fuck our government.Report

              • Marchmaine in reply to Jaybird says:

                Jubilee or Hiatus?

                Out of curiosity I looked up US Mortgage Debt: $11.1 Trillion.

                I have no idea how to calculate a one month or two month hiatus.

                On the plus side, it makes clearing the $1.5 Trillion student loan debt look like a bargain and almost like a good use of funds.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Marchmaine says:

                I started coming up with narrowing the definitions and ended up shocked at the amount of moral hazard.

                But then I looked at 2007-2008 and found myself wavering again.Report

              • InMD in reply to Marchmaine says:

                It’s becoming a question of what priority is most important for the way most people participate in the economy and I think the clear answer to that in 2020 is consumer spending. To me the most compelling reason for something like student loan forgiveness is to facilitate spending plus the ability to save of the most important consumer class i.e. non-ultra rich but with some disposable income. Tying that up in debt forever is a massive long term constraint on the economy at large and a hold up on money that actually does get spread around.Report

              • Marchmaine in reply to InMD says:

                I’m happy to look at student debt as part of an education reform program that tackles cost on the front-end and debt on the back-end.

                But as part of a pandemic response that needs to put cash in the hands of the non-salaried populace that are going to be crushed by the financial obligations of April 1… I stand by my position that a $1.5T student debt jubilee for the upper-middle class would be terrible stimulus compared to $1.5T cash to everyone over a rolling 3-month period.

                Now, If we wanted to suspend student debt re-payment as a 3-month hiatus? :shrug: I’m neither for or against that as long as the baseline is passed. But, if the baseline is passed, then its really just extra money for a small subset of the population — which is bad for solidarity IMO. Why not 3-month hiatus for car payments? Why are we prioritizing extra-extra money for college loans?Report

              • InMD in reply to Marchmaine says:

                Fair enough, and I’d agree that cash for all is probably better, and maybe greater benefit is possible with relief from other types of debt. But now we’re just having a conversation about priorities after accepting the basic premise of the type of spending that matters most.

                The bigger problem we face is that the vast majority of the political class rejects that premise altogether. And while BSDI I see 0 evidence that reality is making inroads in the GOP psyche whereas there are at least some signs of life on the D fringes, even if their leadership is too incompetent and parochial to take up the path.Report

              • Stillwater in reply to InMD says:

                Good comment InMD. That’s the best (and so far only) student loan relief argument that’s moved me to think it’s a good idea. I also agree with March that now’s probably not the right time to try to ram that policy through.Report

              • InMD in reply to Stillwater says:

                Human centered capitalism dude.Report

            • Philip H in reply to Slade the Leveller says:

              Call me when that happens . . . . again we have data and trend information, and it shows that airlines are NOT doing this.Report

          • Dark Matter in reply to Philip H says:

            The problem is I haven’t lost my job. My wife and kid haven’t lost their jobs. We’re all working from home. We’re spending less money on gas and eating out so if anything the cash flow is better than before. I guess we did some panic buying but that’s on us and everything will get used eventually.

            A 25% unemployment rate implies 75% of the money would be wasted.

            It seems more useful if the unemployed get $4k than the likes of me get $1k.Report

            • Stillwater in reply to Dark Matter says:

              I think the thought process is a bit conflicted on the role of the cash payments, myself. For some, the payments are for bare-bones expenses, like rent/mortgage, utility bills, food and gas, etc. For other they’re supposed to have a stimulus effect in the economy, but that’s basically impossible when people can’t spend money on anything other than the above listed items.

              Means testing is probably too convoluted for out CCers to get their minds around. Probably better to just require people at an income threshhold to repay the payment as part of their 2020 taxes. But that, too, was too convoluted for members of our finely tuned legislative machine.Report

        • Stillwater in reply to Slade the Leveller says:

          if we consider that all of the recent success of the American economy has been consumer driven, then perhaps ALL of the money ought to go to consumers.

          This is a good point/observation. One of the problems with the corporate bailout side is that the purpose isn’t so much to preserve them because of the services they provide but to protect shareholders stakes in those firms. I mean, if United Airlines went belly up because it didn’t receive a $10 billion cash infusion (does anyone seriously believe this would happen?) a handful of venture capitalists would buy up the assets for pennies on the dollar and planes would be flying again lickety split.

          That’s the American way, isn’t it?Report

          • Stillwater in reply to Stillwater says:

            Here’s a good example of what I mean:

            Boeing wants $60 billion from the pending Senate economic rescue bill, but it’s chief executive said the company may not take the money if it has to surrender an equity stake to the federal government like the big banks did in 2008.

            So, Boeing wants the money but doesn’t need it to stay solvent.Report

            • Philip H in reply to Stillwater says:

              No Boeing wants the money and has learned from TARP and similar activities in the last decade that they have to clean house and fly right while doing so.Report

      • Marchmaine in reply to North says:

        Not bad, but still seems rather more slanted left… here’s an updated Politico article that is slightly more balanced in that it at least acknowledges that the Dems are also attempting to put things in that aren’t reasonable.

        If I cobble together several [poorly reported] sources, this is what I come up with:

        $1,200 per person
        $500 per kid
        $3000 per household (? weird math)
        Under $75k threshold

        R Overreach
        1. $500B “slush fund” insufficient controls over who gets funds and secrecy issues (i.e. becomes purely discretionary at the “discretion” of Mnuchin).
        2. Fewer strings (i.e. stock buy-backs/exec compensation)

        D Overreach
        1. Renewable Energy
        2. Union Provisions
        3. Executive Compensation Restricted for more than the 2-yrs in the bill

        Things D’s would Like in the bill but aren’t
        1. More Funding for Hospitals
        2. Unemployment Insurance Expansion
        3. More funding for States (to cover budget shortfalls)
        3a. Technically, funding for states is included in $500B discretionary funds… but, discretion.

        Marchmaine political commentary:
        1. I’d be concerned about giving Mnuchin $500B discretionary funds too.
        2. On the other hand, I might give him the rope to hang himself with… then leak the shit out of all the crappy deals he cuts (assuming they are crappy and not awesome deals).
        3. Campaigning against the Mnuchin Bailouts might be the best [political] outcome possible.
        4. Seriously Dems, don’t Thunberg this thing up.
        5. Unions are dead, long live Unions.
        6. If these are the cool structural reforms Dems are hoping for? Dems are in trouble… these are like 1970’s songs that couldn’t make it into Guardians of the Galaxy movies.Report

        • North in reply to Marchmaine says:

          What is wierd to me is the GOP is proposing to phase in the per person payments, starting at 600 bucks for really poor folk then ramping up to 1200 per person max. I dunno what is up with that.

          Also the GOP is putting in an extension of an abstinence program into their proposal so I’d put that into the R overreach column.

          I’m having some difficulty with the D overreach column. I am totally willing to believe the D’s are doing those kinds of things but all the articles I find have the GOP -saying- the Dems are trying to add it in rather than the Dems actually advocating for it. Pelosi is supposedly unveiling the House’s proposal today so I’d say that will stand as the real record as to what the Dems want.

          Talking about your commentary:
          1. Yes, we’re agreed on that.
          2. Since the deals are anonymous at his discretion they’d simply hide everything and then deny it. That would badly undercut any campaigning on it.
          3. It’s not worth giving the GOP and Trump 500 billion bucks to plunder just for a campaign advantage. It simply isn’t.
          4. Agreed, if they are trying to do that then it’s idiotic and they need to stop. Pelosi’s bill should set the record straight on that.
          5. All hail unions, alas- the unions.
          6. I… don’t know what this means.Report

          • Marchmaine in reply to North says:

            Agreed on the $600… my quirky take is that the Legislative Branch (at this point) exists for nothing other than the Tax Code. It literally worships the Tax Code and cannot think in any term other than the Code and its parameters. Thus all problems/solutions are always and everywhere a Tax Code project. The people getting $600 reflect their relationship to the Tax Code.Report

            • North in reply to Marchmaine says:

              At least on the right wing side of the legislature I would agree with you. The GOP’s money people and the only firmly anchored leg of their ideological stool have entrenched that principle and it’s twisted the rest of their mental architecture around it like a sail wrapped around a mast.Report

        • Stillwater in reply to Marchmaine says:

          I think one big point of contention is funding to states to cover their increased costs, so I’m not sure where the breakdown is. Dems want a dedicated channel for the required disbursement of those payments, I would guess.

          Why is there a line through items 1 and 2 of the Dem proposal? Are they already agreed to?Report

          • George Turner in reply to Stillwater says:

            Even on the items agreed to, Democrats will still oppose the bill so they can get their talking points out there.

            I think McConnell should just give up. A major bail out isn’t going to happen because Nancy thinks withholding it will hurt Trump by cratering the economy prior to the election.Report

            • Philip H in reply to George Turner says:

              And yet less then 24 hours later McConnell even agrees with Mnuchin and Schumer that they are close to a bill.

              Your tea leaf reading skills are atrophying before our eyes.

              Kinda sadly funny thatReport

  9. greginak says:

    That is a mighty big lift in this day and age. Almost Herculean.

    Very true and almost certainly what they had in mind.Report

  10. Saul Degraw says:

    Apparently Trump is getting the heebie jeebies on the economy and is trying to make everyone return to work next week:

    Some problems:

    1. Trump can’t order the stock market to go up via tweet;

    2. He can’t order blue states and politicians to left their stay in place ordinances.Report

  11. LeeEsq says:

    The Republican plan for the economy is literally endlessly less generous for ordinary people than that of the next most right-leaning government in the democratic world, that of the United Kingdom. Boris Johnson’s government is wiling to pay 80% of the salaries of employees for companies that don’t lay off workers during the Covid-19 depression. McConnel’s bill offers a paltry one time payment.Report

    • greginak in reply to Saul Degraw says:

      Pashaw….that ain’t nothing. Life comes at you fast. Tonight Texas Lt Gov and prominent Hoover Inst libertarian are going all in on sacrificing old people to get the economy going. More important to get the economy going even if that means letting the virus run rampant.Report

      • LeeEsq in reply to greginak says:

        Somehow I think that a virus run rampant will do at least equal economic damage then shelter in place.Report

        • Dark Matter in reply to LeeEsq says:

          Somehow I think that a virus run rampant will do at least equal economic damage then shelter in place.

          Depends on the numbers… but the numbers I’m seeing suggest the opposite.

          At the peak of the Great Depression, the unemployment rate was 9.9%, it took 2 years to get to that point.

          We think our current unemployment rate is about 20% and it took less than a month to get here.

          The virus, even with those nasty predictions Chip posted, was on course to be a 2nd Spanish flu except it targets the retired rather than the young and healthy. We’ve shut down about a quarter of the economy, so call it twice the Great Depression.

          The Spanish flu did less damage than the Great Depression.

          My gut is we give the HC system a few weeks to get its act together and try to shelter the old and then let the economy do things again. We could also do things like take the temperature of every person as they come into work/bar/whatever.

          Clearly we can’t do nothing to stop this virus, the models are terrible for that, but in terms of economic damage this is not sustainable.Report

          • LeeEsq in reply to Dark Matter says:

            The peak unemployment rate for the Great Depression was 25% not 9.9% and there wasn’t a pandemic making things complicated at the time. The general death prediction I’ve seen from the United States is 2.2 million with tens or hundreds more millions sick. That is going to do a lot of economic damage. There is also some growing evidence that Covid-19 is more deadly to young people than originally thought.

            I think that the faction that is arguing for letting society go on as normal or against shelter in place is engaging in a lot of willful blindness on the seriousness of the pandemic or what is necessary to stop it because it doesn’t suit their ideological priors.Report

            • Chip Daniels in reply to LeeEsq says:

              It isn’t just the death rate.
              For every person who dies maybe another half dozen need to be hospitalized. For every person hospitalized another 10 call out sick from work.

              This alone is a staggering economic blow. Not to mention, the economic cost of those millions of hospital bills sucking up cash that would otherwise go to buying consumer goods.Report

              • Dark Matter in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                A ton of that is going to happen anyway, we’re just shutting down human interactions to slow it down.

                Which is not to say there’s no value in slowing it down, presumably that will lower the death rate.

                It feels like there are reasonable things we could do short of this. Test everyone for fever before they walk into work and again at lunch and at every gathering.

                Having said that, this is not my field and I’m not sure if that would bend the curve down enough.Report

            • Philip H in reply to LeeEsq says:

              In Mississippi where I live the three top classes of infected – with identical numbers – are 20-29, 40-9 and 60+. That’s a broad spread impact to the economy, not focused on retirees.Report

    • Dark Matter in reply to Saul Degraw says:

      If you’re looking for a way to strangle future employment and create unemployment, then forbidding companies from firing workers is the way to do it. The lifespan of a job is measured in months or low single digits, enabling job creation is far more important than nailing workers in place.

      We are inflicting vast amounts of damage on the economy, even with the bailout large numbers of businesses will go under. Anything which gets in the way of businesses creating future jobs is a problem.Report

  12. DensityDuck says:

    Incidentally, this isn’t new. Pelosi shot down TARP back in 2008 because it only was gonna write checks to underwater homeowners and not do anything else…

    • Stillwater in reply to DensityDuck says:

      Republican leaders, who had pushed their reluctant members to vote for the bill, pointed the finger for the failure at a speech given Monday by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.

      1. Republican leaders
      2. who pushed their reluctant members
      3. blamed a Democrat for their reluctanceReport

      • DensityDuck in reply to Stillwater says:

        Imagine if Pelosi had kept her mouth shut and accepted a Bipartisan Victory. We’d now be talking about President Pelosi whose masterful political maneuvering in 2008 had convinced the Republican minority to put aside politics for the good of the country, and who was a worthy heir to the legacy of President Barack Obama.

        And yet. She couldn’t do that. She couldn’t do that.Report

  13. North says:

    Ok, reading over the Hill ( it looks like the state of play is basically this:

    -The center of action is in the Senate currently. Mcconnell tried to exclude Pelosi from the negotiations on the third relief bill but she and Schumer have basically been coordinating closely on this so that gambit has failed (along with the fact that any Senate bill has to go through the house too). The House bill (and all the provisions right wingers are carping about) is basically being used as a threat- if the GOP won’t compromise on the 500 billion “slush fund” and more funding for the states then the House will move on this bill which is, as right wingers note, larded up with all kinds of peripheral left wing wish list items. This isn’t quite as ludicrous as it looks on the surface because the House bill is simply a stick currently to threaten the Senate GOP with if they won’t budge on the items in the Senate bill. It’s just political hardball.

    So, the Dems control the House and can pass anything they want.
    The GOP controls the Senate but thanks to the filibuster and illness absentees they need Democratic support to pass anything.
    Trump is in the White House and will likely sign anything they send him.

    So Pelosi has the legislative upper hand at the moment and is cranking the screws hard to try and tilt the Senate bill away from corporations and funds that Trump and his cronies will plunder and towards more money for the masses (and yes more money for the safety nets and their attendant bureaucracies).
    All the rest of this sturm und drag is politics being played. The House is threatening to pass their bill and send it to the Senate at which point the GOP would have to refuse to pass it which they would not enjoy doing but they probably would considering what’s in it.
    Both sides are spinning hard: the Dems are trying to force the GOP to pass a Senate bill that is more to their liking. The GOP is trying to use complaining about the Dems threat to flank the Dems maneuver by appealing to the electorate. It’s a messaging war.

    Best unlikely case for the Dems: They pull the trigger on their House bill, the GOP loses the messaging war and passes the house bill.
    Best likely case for the Dems: The political threats plus a stalemate on messaging makes Mcconnell give up and allow more oversight of the fund and more funding for the states and other more populist positions.
    Best unlikely case for the GOP: The Dems decisively lose the messaging war, their House bill threat backfires and the GOP pushes their bill as is or with even more right wing num-nums through and the House passes it as is.
    Best likely case for the GOP: The Dems give up on the messaging war and accept the bill as is or with only minor modifications.

    Best case for the country: The Senate bill ends up getting passed but with a much reduced bailout element with strong oversight (maybe an independent inspector general) so Trump and his people can’t plunder it. The two parties bargaining results in each sides special wants being stripped out and there’s a good sized payout to safety nets, states and individuals in it that is greater than half the bill. The House bill fizzles away as the stick is no longer useful.
    Worst case for the country: Rock solid gridlock, nothing gets passed. The Senate bill just jams and even if the Dems pass their House Bill it just dies in the Senate.

    As for the actors? The Dems are displaying some impressive unity between Schumer and Pelosi. Mcconnell remains one of the most capable (if evil) Senate Majority leaders in modern history. Trump will do what he’s told. The final tally will depend on what outcome we get.Report

    • Chip Daniels in reply to North says:


      Nancy Pelosi brought a gun to a knife fight.Report

      • North in reply to Chip Daniels says:

        That is a good summary of the Democratic view and, as a Democrat myself, I like it. But guns can explode in one’s hand- let’s hope hers doesn’t. Still Pelosi is a very canny politician and I trust her instincts and am rooting for her.

        Though in all honesty I personally think the best outcome would be the realistic Democratic win outcome rather than the house bill passing.Report

    • Marchmaine in reply to North says:

      CNBC has a nice bullet list format (I have no idea why news outlets have such a hard time reporting with bullet lists):

      It would include, according to the summary:

      * Direct payments to individuals of $1,500 and up to $7,500 for a family of five.
      * No cost-sharing for coronavirus vaccines and treatments, including for the uninsured.
      * Expanded access to paid family and medical leave.
      * $500 billion in grants and interest-free loans to small businesses.
      * Strengthened unemployment insurance, with $600 per week for people affected by coronavirus and eligible for unemployment benefits.
      * $150 billion in funding for hospitals, community health centers and government health programs.
      * $60 billion in funding for schools and universities along with student debt relief.
      * More funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and other food assistance programs.
      * $4 billion in state election grants and a national requirement for 15 days of early voting and no-excuse absentee voting as fears grow about coronavirus spreading at crowded polling sites.

      Not having read the bill, I can’t say whether this is a complete list or something cherry-picked by CNBC to further a narrative.

      That caveat aside, the principle I’m working from is that this Quarantine is voluntary and at the command of our state… therefore, for the common good of the Quarantine, we need to mitigate the costs we’re inflicting upon others. If we want a quarantine, we have to buy a quarantine; and we want a quarantine.

      So this seems a reasonable opening bid that is focused on the folks bearing the brunt of the quarantine.

      Its not clear to me why there’s $500B for *small* businesses and not *large* businesses, but maybe that’s just a marketing gimmick?

      At any rate, as long as those are the only real expenditures and they are going to *existing* programs, (i.e. we’re not doing something stupid like trying to build the bridge as we’re running across it) those items are broadly aligned with the principle I laid out up top… again, assuming that’s all that’s in it – and here I’ll be frank that I don’t have any reason to believe that CNBC is reporting truthfully or completely on this… that’s just the state of affairs in journalism today.

      [I mean, for example, I might quibble with what we mean for “funding for Universities” depending on what universities and what funding and for what… its not like any of the Universities I’m currently paying for are giving me a refund for the education they aren’t providing nor the room and board *I’m* now providing…and endowments are literally rainy-day funds…so…absent details I’ll reserve my outrage and assume its money well spent, and not a “slush fund”]Report

      • Dark Matter in reply to Marchmaine says:

        RE: up to $7,500 for a family of five.

        So I get $7500 to help with an income loss of zero… and of this would go into savings.

        RE: No cost-sharing for coronavirus vaccines and treatments, including for the uninsured.

        There is no vaccine. After there is one we can talk about cost sharing assuming there’s anyone who hasn’t been infected at that point.

        RE: $60 billion in funding for schools and universities along with student debt relief.

        Need more details on this.

        The rest of it looks pretty good.Report

        • Marchmaine in reply to Dark Matter says:

          RE: $7,500 … yes? But maybe you lose your job (or some other you) and that gets you over the hump… or maybe you decide to help out family and treat it as charity; or maybe you loan it to someone and get paid back once the economy kicks-back in.

          And, if that’s your situation, its likely clawed back next year anyway…so no-harm/no-foul.

          I get that people are calling this “stimulus” but its not stimulus, its buying a quarantine.Report

          • Marchmaine in reply to Marchmaine says:

            I should add, because maybe its not obvious to people… but all this does is buy us some time – 30, 60, maybe 90-days.

            There should be other bills funding projects over the next 30, 60 or 90 days to build up a testing, treatment, and long term strategies with the (minimum) goal of getting a testing regime in place in the next 30-days so we can expand areas of social commerce.

            If we stand around thinking that this bill does anything other than buy us time… then we’ll be in a worse place than we are now… but $2T squandered.Report

          • Dark Matter in reply to Marchmaine says:

            That’s a lot of maybes.

            The only one that is convincing is “maybe you are an outlier”… well that and the whole “buying a quarantine” thing.Report

        • greginak in reply to Dark Matter says:

          People are getting treatment. We want this to happen. We don’t want people afraid of getting treatment out of cost. When there is a vaccine we will want everyone to get it since that will be the ultimate win.Report

          • Dark Matter in reply to greginak says:

            RE: When there is a vaccine we will want everyone to get it since that will be the ultimate win.

            Yes but it’s not the sort of thing I expect in this bill. A vaccine is 6 months away if we are very lucky and two years away if we are not.

            RE: We don’t want people afraid of getting treatment out of cost.

            I agree, but that’s probably also beyond the scope of this bill.

            We’ve shut the economy down, this bill is supposed to help with that which is immediate and urgent (which is why I question student debt being in there… although thank whoever for pointing out the numbers make this a temp fix).Report

            • And if we’re really unlucky it’s like the flu and a partial vaccine is the best we can get. It seems to be more lethal than the flu, so maybe 80-100,000 US deaths per year, mostly among the elderly? That would put it at #6 on the cause of death rating list for the US.Report

            • greginak in reply to Dark Matter says:

              Huh? We want people to be getting treatment now if they need it. If people are in the hospital now but dont’ have ins they will sure as hell need relief instead of being sent to collections.Report

              • Dark Matter in reply to greginak says:

                We have a few thousand in the hospital.

                We have tens of millions of people who have lost their jobs.

                Half of the cases are in NY which means the hospital is a local issue to one state, the unemployment in national.

                If you do no forward thinking at all and just react to stuff when you have to (i.e. Congress) then there is no hospital issue but unemployment and the economy are DO IT NOW issues.Report

              • greginak in reply to Dark Matter says:

                Forward thinking is great. The wave of illness and hospitlazations is just starting in NY and Atlanta and other places. It hasnt’ crested yet and is still building in other places. We’re not even at the end of the beginning of this. This is just the start.

                The do it now is money and relief to people while we ride out April which will, hopefully maybe, be the worst month. If we are lucky.Report

              • Stillwater in reply to Dark Matter says:

                Half of the cases are in NY which means the hospital is a local issue to one state, the unemployment in national.

                It’s absolutely amazing to watch conservatives flailing around in the soup trying to save capitalism, their ideology, and their 401Ks in the face of a pandemic.Report

              • Dark Matter in reply to Stillwater says:

                There’s a lot to be set for a system which tries to solve problems which affect tens or hundreds of millions of people before it tries to solve problems which only affect thousands.Report

              • greginak in reply to Dark Matter says:

                It’s going to affect millions. Hunkering down/distancing is the way to limit that. What trump and beck and you are advocating will lead to far more infections.Report

              • Dark Matter in reply to greginak says:

                It’s going to affect millions.

                That would be the forward thinking thing again.

                advocating will lead to far more infections.


                We need to face that this is a set of ugly choices. Narrowing the conversation down to one sides’ benefits and the other’s costs isn’t the way to evaluate this.

                No matter what we do, there are going to be a lot of people who get sick, there will be a ton of economic damage, there will be deaths and so forth. This should be a talk about trade offs.

                The powers that be have decided that sheltering in place for a few weeks is worth the price. That means we give the HC system time to get ready, manufacture masks, breathers, tests, and maybe even put out multiple spread points.

                How much of that is reasonable evaluation of the very real threat of the virus vs virtue signalling and putting a value of zero on the damage done to the economy I can’t tell.

                Even if we assume what we’re doing is reasonable for a few weeks, there’s no way we can keep this up for the 18 months it would take to fully deal with this virus.

                A lot of the nasty things people are talking about avoiding, tons of people sick and dying, it’s going to happen no matter what we do. At this point what we should be thinking about is how many dead people we’re willing to trade for having the economy back on line… but I don’t think we are.Report

              • greginak in reply to Dark Matter says:

                FFS “virtue signalling” Geezus. If you can’t even take people with different opinions as doing more than that then it’s not surprising you aren’t hearing anything.

                A couple posts up you were saying this is just a few thousand people in one city, now you admit this will affect millions. Which is it?

                Trump should have ordered, through the DPA, massive production of PPE and vents and whatever the else is needed. We need to ramp up testing massively. Those are things we can do to look towards getting out.

                You are talking about trading lives, others i assume, for the economy. So am i. I’m very much on protect lives and have the gov float the economy as best as possible. But feel free to tell me about the death panels you want to feed lives for the Sacred Economy.Report

              • Dark Matter in reply to greginak says:

                FFS “virtue signalling” Geezus. If you can’t even take people with different opinions as doing more than that then it’s not surprising you aren’t hearing anything.

                “Virtue signalling” is the realm of using unicorns to fix things and/or spending infinite resources. If you’re planning on spending a million dollars a life then you’re making choices, if you’re planning on spending a trillion then you’re virtue signalling and engaged in magic thinking.

                A couple posts up you were saying this is just a few thousand people in one city, now you admit this will affect millions. Which is it?

                The word “is” is present-tense while “will” is future-tense. I also pointed out “Congress does no forward thinking”.

                You are talking about trading lives, others i assume, for the economy. So am i. I’m very much on protect lives and have the gov float the economy as best as possible. But feel free to tell me about the death panels you want to feed lives for the Sacred Economy.

                In the real world, hospitals, medical ethicists, advocates for the disabled, and governors are trying to figure out what to do when they don’t have enough resources to save everyone, which will probably happen within the next month. At a handwave, there are three big schools of thought.

                The pragmatists believe greatest good for the greatest number, i.e. save as many people as possible. This means prioritizing the young and healthy who can be saved most efficiently. Ergo people who are already sick, who could be saved only at the expense of the resources which would save two or three others, will NOT be saved.

                The ethicists believe first come first served (or lottery), even if that results in more people dying than needed. They often talk about all lives being equally important.

                The magic thinkers refuse to believe there needs to be death panels or that we’ll need to make this choice. When the hospitals get slammed this line of reasoning fails.

                So serious question time, which are you?

                If you answer the question with a choice then you’re taking part in a death panel discussion and willing to face ugly choices. If you refuse or insist it doesn’t need to happen then you’re with the magic thinking community. For full disclosure, put me in there as a pragmatist.Report

      • Philip H in reply to Marchmaine says:

        That bullet list is what’s now on the table, not where the Senate started. Republicans opened with that $500 Billion as a discretionary fund with no oversight beyond what the Treasury Secretary wanted to give to whom, and then being given 6 months of secrecy while the companies did stuff. The small business orientation now is in addition to explicit help to cruise ship companies and airlines who would likely have sucked the oxygen of the room in the first iteration.Report

      • North in reply to Marchmaine says:

        Yeah if this is what the final senate bill looks like then I’d categorize it as a realistic Democratic win. Hell, only way they’d get more is if they got election protection elements into it.

        Also it looks pretty good in general for the country though I’d agree with Dark that I’d really like to see what the 60 billion schools thing is… though at that price tag we’re looking at maybe covering a couple months payments or halting payments for a while, not paying it off, which seems pretty sensible to me.Report

  14. Aaron David says:

    This whole stupid thing is PANDERMONIUM!

    Seriously folks, just cancel income tax for the year if you want stimulus, but both sides are acting like little children. And don’t try to tell me your team is better, because it ain’t.Report

    • Stillwater in reply to Aaron David says:

      Gotta have an income to tax to cut taxes on income.Report

    • North in reply to Aaron David says:

      Uh, cancelling income tax for a year does nothing at all for anyone who doesn’t have a job or who is furloughed because of the epidemic.Report

      • Aaron David in reply to North says:

        It works on everyone who had a job last year (which wouldn’t have been effected by the Virus) and even those without jobs still have to pay income tax. Benefits, you know.Report

        • Philip H in reply to Aaron David says:

          well now, that’s one way to get rid of the federal workforce. Thanks.

          Appreciate it. So do my colleagues at CDC and NIH who aren’t sleeping right now trying to stop this thing from getting worse.Report

          • Aaron David in reply to Philip H says:

            How does that even remotely relate to my comment?Report

            • Philip H in reply to Aaron David says:

              Where do you think federal civil servants salaries come from? Unicorn farts?Report

              • Aaron David in reply to Philip H says:

                The same place that funds the Military, Social Security, Academic Grants… And stimuli.Report

              • Philip H in reply to Aaron David says:

                yes – income tax dollars. So yeah give every one in the US a one year income tax holiday and put it ALL On the credit card – or watch the federal bureaucracy get hosed.Report

              • Aaron David in reply to Philip H says:

                Well, you are obviously right. In no just world would we spend one dollar on the public when a single Federal Job is on the line!

                Leave no bureaucrat behind!

                (Do you even understand what is being discussed here? What the current wrangling in DC is about?)Report

              • Philip H in reply to Aaron David says:

                yes I do – its about preserving the livelihoods of tens of millions of Americans. Its about getting health resources to hospitals who need supplies.

                But my point is that while we can and should put a ton of stuff on the proverbial credit card canning off revenue at the same time has consequences – not the least of which is the salaries of the feds who are working the response go away. That’s a non-trivial problem, unless you really do believe the CDC and NIH are worthless.Report

              • Aaron David in reply to Philip H says:


                You do understand fungibility of money? The velocity of money? That dollars don’t really care about what they are used for nor where they come from? That using the IRS might be the quickest way to get that money back into circulation, to help the worried and frightend population deal with our current situation?

                But no, you are worried a group of fed workers might, might lose work. No causality is presented, just that some in the fed might feel the pinch, and that this is worse that anything else. No one is saying at this time that the CDC or NIH would lose funding, lose bodies over a stimulus. But that is your first fear.

                Down the road we might be looking at how well those two agencies handled this and what they were doing during the run up, but no one is looking for mass firing in the middle of a crisis.Report

              • Philip H in reply to Aaron David says:

                The IRS can’t get the money out the door if you aren’t paying them to work. The CDC can’t approve novel treatments or testing procedures if the aren’t at work – and asking them to do that work for a year without pay is nuts.

                Look – I get it – we feds are a relatively lucky bunch right now as we mostly can work. That aside a lot of people see us as a huge drain on the economy no matter what. But after listening to the right side of the aisle lambaste us over the deficit every time a Democrat is in the WH, and after hearing over and over about how the bureaucracy needs to simply go away so capitalism can work properly, I”m a little more then a little P!ssed that we are now expected to both make everyone else’s lives whole via the government credit card AND lay aside our livelihoods so everyone else can feel better about themselves.

                Either the bureaucracy is necessary – which it appears to be at the moment – and so we should stop this loose talk of its destruction at other times – or we really are expendable and the CDC, NIH, IRS and all the rest need to go.Report

              • Aaron David in reply to Philip H says:

                NO ONE IS TALKING ABOUT FIRING THE IRS OR ANY FED GOV EMPLOYEES. There are no plans to do such, and you have shown zero, ZERO, causality.


                Where are you getting this junk?Report

              • Philip H in reply to Aaron David says:

                my salary as a fed is paid for directly by income tax receipts. Same as nearly every other career fed, and a nearly equal number of contractors doing federal work. You remove the revenue source that pas us by stopping collecting income tax for a year, and either our salaries become part of the national debt (which even in the best scenarios would be questionable), or you have to fire us because you have no funds to pay us. We are legally barred from working for free (as ever fed furloughed last year was reminded repeatedly), and I find it a dubious and or dishionest assumption at best that Congress would retroactively pay us – nevermind we’d all have been evicted from our homes and lost any and all savings we had trying to float for that year if we were required to work.

                You started all this with your flippant Lets Take an Income Tax Holiday remark – which you haven’t walked back – as if just not collecting taxes has no other economic impacts. I keep trying to show that it does, but clearly – again – you don’t value the work for economic input of federal bureaucrats enough to care.

                Except if you value the CDC currently, or the NIH or the US Public Health Service, or the FBI or ICE, or any one of thousandth other darlings of the right you have to care about how we get paid sop we stay on the job and do the things you want us to do.Report

              • Aaron David in reply to Philip H says:


  15. KenB says:

    I like this idea from Greg Mankiw (via MR) — basically, send out the money to everyone now and collect it next year at a percentage based on 2020 vs 2019 income. That gets it out fast while not being a permanent giveaway to people who don’t need it.Report

    • Jaybird in reply to KenB says:

      The only thing that could make it better is that if you don’t need it, you have the option of donating it at no penalty. You’re working at home and still getting the same paycheck? Give it to charity.

      Hrm. Probably be better to give it to someone else… ugh. I don’t like how that’d play out.

      But I think that giving it to somebody else would be of more benefit than me putting it in, say, a 12 month CD.Report

      • Marchmaine in reply to Jaybird says:

        Yeah… this would be a really cool idea. Not sure how you’d implement it.

        As it is, I’ll likely have to hoard $7500 because I’m 100% sure I’ll be in the “give it back” category… and while I could “lose” $1k or maybe $2k in 2021 tax shuffle… I’d definitely feel $7.5k.

        I bet there’s an economics dissertation to be written about how it would be better to give March $7.5k and let them figure out who needs it most vs. hoarding it to give it back at tax time in 2021.

        So, I’ll probably have to hoard $7.5kReport

  16. George Turner says:

    The party of science is taking action: Nevada Governor Bans Malaria Drugs for Coronavirus Patients

    Nevada’s governor on Tuesday banned the use of anti-malaria drugs chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine to treat coronavirus patients.

    Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak’s executive order came after President Trump touted the medication as holding promise for combating the illness.

    Sisolak said there was no consensus among experts or Nevada doctors that the drugs can treat people with COVID-19.

    His order also limits a prescription of the medicines — which are also used to treat illnesses like lupus and arthritis — to a 30-day supply to ensure it’s available for “legitimate medical purposes” and so people don’t stockpile the drug.

    Long term autoimmune disorders are of course way more important than thousands of people flat-lining. I would contrast it with some Southern Baptist governor forbidding doctors to use anything but prayer to treat patients, but there isn’t such an example.Report

      • Marchmaine in reply to Chip Daniels says:

        Come now friend… the first paragraphs of the (non-)article is:

        “The study involved just 30 patients. Of the 15 patients given the malaria drug, 13 tested negative for the coronavirus after a week of treatment. Of the 15 patients who didn’t get hydroxychloroquine, 14 tested negative for the virus.

        The results of the study weren’t statistically significant.”

        Are you culture-warring science?Report

        • Jaybird in reply to Marchmaine says:

          I prefer my ns to be over 10,000 and I understand that we can’t always do that.

          But 30?Report

        • Chip Daniels in reply to Marchmaine says:

          The article goes on to say:” Hydroxychloroquine, particularly when given with the antibiotic azithromycin, has received widespread attention following a controversial, small study of about 40 patients hospitalized with Covid-19 in France.

          Which is to say…the original study was no more reliable than this one.

          Which is probably why scientists, like real actual scientists who know what they are talking about, have refrained from advising this to be used.

          Or to be more blunt, the President of the United States was talking out his ass, and this governor was probably right to block its usage until we know more.Report

          • Dark Matter in reply to Chip Daniels says:

            …the President of the United States was talking out his ass…

            Must be a day ending in a “y”.Report

          • Marchmaine in reply to Chip Daniels says:

            Sure… it’s on a list of potential drugs that can (and should be tested).

            Which is why we should really not take a position on whether its is or isn’t a drug worth testing… nor should we turn it into a culture-war litmus test for anything.

            Even the actual “overselling” by Trump isn’t… he’s very clear that its all a gamble… a hopeful fast-path gamble with little downside and possible upside.

            Watching the video, I’m seeing why Trump is going up 5%… and MBD’s article about IYI’s starts to ring true.

            “Nassim Nicholas Taleb refers to this class of people as IYI, Intellectuals Yet Idiots, and defines it as “the inner circle of no-skin-in-the-game policymaking ‘clerks’ and journalists-insiders”Report

            • Chip Daniels in reply to Marchmaine says:

              Which is why the Nevada governor took his medical advice from people who know what they are talking about, not a failed game show host.Report

              • George Turner in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                Why do I think you’d be saying the exact opposite if it was Trump who banned the use of the malaria drug?

                Medical details aside, Trump is echoing FDR who said we have to do something about the economy, while the Nevada governor is playing the role of Hoover, who the public felt wasn’t going to do much of anything except let nature take its course. The reaction was so dramatic that it forever altered America’s political landscape.

                Trump is offering hope, and the governor is snatching it away because there’s no “proof” it will work. Most of what FDR did worsened and extended the Great Depression, but people largely didn’t care because he was trying things. In such desperate times, when people are looking for any sign of hope, their feelings become so strong that they’ll switch parties, and such swings last generations.

                In this case, every single person who dies in Nevada will have family members saying “She would have lived if they’d been allowed to use that malaria drug. We all know it. Everybody knows it. The governor condemned her to die because he’s an evil, evil man.” And everyone else will nod in agreement, suggest that he was being paid by the mob so they could rub out some old folks they didn’t like, and that will be all she wrote for Democrats in that state.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to George Turner says:

                Trump is desperately flailing and panicking, and the greatest single benefit to the nation’s economy and health is to ignore anything he says and listen instead to those who know what they are talking about.Report

            • Stillwater in reply to Marchmaine says:

              About that MBD article on the Intellectual Yet Idiot class …

              MBD essentially concedes that the IYI class was *correct* in its assessment of the scope of the disease spread yet (somehow) manages to apologize for all the fools in Trumpland who Trump exploited into thinking coronavirus was all a “hoax” by saying

              I think a great many Americans, sitting in the giant swathes of the country where coronavirus is nowhere to be found, are wondering if it’s all a lot of hysteria from the intellectual-yet-idiot class. Trump obviously senses this suspicion is out there.

              IOW, MBD confusingly concedes that Trump appealed to people’s ideological priors, and their ignorance, to downplay the severity of a threat which he (Trump) had been repeatedly told was going to be very severe with an example that demonstrates the the main premise in the argument is false.Report

              • Dark Matter in reply to Stillwater says:

                To be fair, it’s hardly new for some special interest group to proclaim that all of society needs to pay attention to them and make their special interest the most important thing on the planet.Report

              • Stillwater in reply to Dark Matter says:


                The context here is that MBD was an early Coronvirus-believer, someone who (a bit more reluctantly than he claims now, seems to me) accepted the fact that a pandemic was coming our way which required Trump to take serious active measures to mitigate. Yet, in this article he’s effectively *apologizing* for Trump bamboozling the public on the premise that he (Trump) sensed that reflexive anti-IYIism was a dominant view in his base. Yet even on MBD’s view, the intellecutal idiots got this one right.

                My takeaway from the essay is that conservatives have drunk so much of their own homebrew kooliad that they don’t even recognize when *their own* thought processes are an example of what what the claim to oppose/detest, in this case, being an IYI.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Stillwater says:

                I notice how “intellectual” is often used as a synonym for “liberal”, especially liberal technocrats like doctors and scientists.

                Yet…was there even a single member of the last 4 administrations that wasn’t a graduate of an elite Ivy League university?

                In fact, wasn’t it Jon Stewart who pointed out that half the talking heads on Fox, e.g. Megyn Kelly, are themselves Ivy League graduates?

                Also too, notice the stories about how the corporate heads at Fox (themselves all elite degree holders) directed their teams to downplay the pandemic, while privately and frantically preparing for it.

                I think the term “Intellectual Yet Idiot” really just means “A fellow Ivy League graduate who openly contradicts my political beliefs”.Report

              • Urusigh in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                Excellent point. IQ is rather evenly distributed across democrats and republicans (libertarians usually outscore both, but the difference isn’t large) as are 4yr college degrees, and the actual officeholders are nearly always Ivy League graduates regardless of party. Which is to say that there is no “Party of Intellectuals”, nor are republicans “anti-intellectual” (though they are pretty firmly anti-clerisy). The MSM just tries to use a “No True Scotsman” fallacy to deny that any intellectual who disagrees with their preferred political agenda is actually an intellectual.

                Which is why I laugh when you say “…listen instead to those who know what they are talking about.” You implicitly fell into the same fallacy. Trump has properly credentialed, highly intelligent, appropriately trained and experienced people advising him, but you just brush that all off because they work for Trump.

                There are legitimate reasons to disagree on the likely severity of the pandemic, but the most significant difference when talking about it is actually your intended audience. One of the strongest predictors shared by Trump support and pandemic severity is population density: Trump Support was inversely related to population density and pandemic severity is directly related to population density, thus for most of Trump’s base the pandemic really isn’t severe and likely won’t be. Fox News and MSNBC effectively aren’t covering the same pandemic because they aren’t talking to the same parts of the country. That Blue States are taking more severe response actions than Red States isn’t just politics or a matter of better/worse policy, it’s proportional response to the difference in threat levels based on differences in population density. Where you sit really does affect where you stand on this.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Urusigh says:

                Does IQ even exist, though?

                I mean, is it testable? Are the tests replicable? Does doing well on these so-called “tests” correlate with *ANYTHING* *ANYWHERE* else?

                Therefore, “IQ” is meaningless.Report

              • Urusigh in reply to Jaybird says:

                Yes, it’s one of the most strongly supported phenomena in the literature, yes it replicates reliably, and yes, it strongly correlates with success at general problem solving, which strongly correlates with success in a variety of career fields. It’s not for nothing that the military has a minimum IQ requirement, below a certain point people literally can’t be trained to be effective in even the simplest occupation. Likewise, those who excel in STEM invariably have high IQ. Further, studies show that it is highly heritable with hundreds of associated genetic markers.

                Honestly, I’m surprised at you Jaybird, you’re usually one of the more empirically-minded posters here, but denying IQ is like denying the earth is an oblate spheroid.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Urusigh says:

                It is possible though, to be highly educated and still make colossal blunders of judgement and leadership, and commit acts of callous indifference to the fate of others.Report

              • Jaybird in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                That wasn’t real socialism, though.Report

              • Urusigh in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                Quite true, but that just brings us full circle to me laughing at your “just listen to the experts” line. Sometimes the “experts” get it wrong too. Helpful of you to admit it though.Report

              • Stillwater in reply to Urusigh says:

                This account is a bit bizarre given the topic though. You’re in effect saying Trump was correct to tell American’s that the epidemic wouldn’t be a big deal because for Trump, the audience he was speaking to were rural red-staters. Not all Americans.

                It’s fine to note that as an account of Trump’s behavior but it should still make everyone’s blood run cold. As an example, Michigan Gov Whitmer has publicly expressed that her vendors for medical supplies have been told by the WH to not fill her orders. I have no reason to believe she’s lying about this* (though conservatives will natch), but I’ll temper it a bit by saying *if it’s true* that the WH is punishing Whitmer for criticizing Trump’s handling of the fed gov response, he should be removed from office.

                *It’s actually 100% consistent with not only everything we know about Trump’s MO, but he explicitly said that Federal help to blue states was contingent on those governors treating him well.Report

              • Dark Matter in reply to Stillwater says:

                Michigan is a swing state and voted for Trump last time.Report

              • Stillwater in reply to Dark Matter says:


              • Dark Matter in reply to Stillwater says:

                …Trump was correct to tell American’s that the epidemic wouldn’t be a big deal…

                Hindsight is great isn’t it? I think there’s a tweet from the World Health Org back in Janruary claiming it wouldn’t be a big deal. Trump’s statements were a LOT more reasonable at the time.

                As an example, Michigan Gov Whitmer has publicly expressed that her vendors for medical supplies have been told by the WH to not fill her orders.

                The way it was reported here was she was told by the vendors that the federal government already had orders in and they’d be filled first.

                he explicitly said that Federal help to blue states was contingent on those governors treating him well.

                This would be a great time for everyone to work together and cooperate. This is also a great time for a Dem Govenor in a Purple State to score political points and try to swing the state Blue.

                MUCH worse, there isn’t enough resources to go around, so everyone is going to come up with their own reason why they should have more and why someone else is to blame.

                That last is not a good thing for a team that wants to score touchdowns. Now if unity and cooperation aren’t important then it probably doesn’t matter.Report

              • Stillwater in reply to Dark Matter says:

                The way it was reported here was she was told by the vendors that the federal government already had orders in and they’d be filled first.

                What reporting where?

                Here’s Whitmer’s own words:

                “What I’ve gotten back is that vendors with whom we’ve procured contracts — They’re being told not to send stuff to Michigan,” Whitmer said live on air. “It’s really concerning, I reached out to the White House last night and asked for a phone call with the president, ironically at the time this stuff was going on.”

                In addition to the above she’s publicly stated that her contracts are being cancelled or sometimes redirected to the Fed Goverment, a complaint shared by other governors, including REpublican governors. Trump’s pissing down the rope, then blames those governors for “not doing more”.

                Also, nice edit on the first quote, implying the opposite of what I actually said.Report

              • Dark Matter in reply to Stillwater says:

                Also, nice edit on the first quote, implying the opposite of what I actually said.

                Sorry, my bad. Not an edit but my cut also gave the wrong meaning.

                Up until today Trump has avoided using the war powers act to force companies to make ventilators and the media has been reporting that the governors were begging him to and he was incompitent and corrupt for not doing so. Today he did so… and they’re reporting that he had a personal beef against GM for closing that plant and this him taking revenge.

                What reporting where?


                In addition to the above she’s publicly stated that her contracts are being cancelled or sometimes redirected to the Fed Goverment, a complaint shared by other governors, including REpublican governors.

                Fundementally this is an impossible situation.

                The USA doesn’t have enough ventilators for New York (which has half of our cases), much less New York + the other top four states + every state that would like to be prepared.

                All 50 governors are trying to be first in line, the Federal gov presumably is, it’s expected there are going to be hard feelings and blame games played.

                When these governors say more needs to be done they DON’T mean the US’s entire stock should be sent to NY.Report

              • Dark Matter in reply to Dark Matter says:

                When these governors say more needs to be done they DON’T mean the US’s entire stock should be sent to NY.

                New York has 8.6 million people, we might see 4 million get C19 at the same time, 5% to 11.5% will need ICU, mostly that means vents.

                So New York will need something like 300k vents. And they’ll need them in something like two weeks.

                Number of modern ventilators in the US: 60k.
                Number of old ventilators that are safety stock: 100k.

                New York is being hit hard and first, if we’re interested in min/maxing the utility of vents, then we should be rounding up every vent in the nation and sending them there.

                Which means the govenor of Michigan (etc) will, in a few weeks, be telling the people of Michigan that they need to die so people in NY can live.

                More ideally the various Govenors will have every hospital or Medical place searched and fine more, and have various DIY places come up with half-assed vents.

                So yes, the federal gov is taking orders away from Michigan and other places. Yes, the govenors should do more.

                There aren’t enough vents for govenors to hoard in the name of creating safety stock (even if that’s how to minimize the number of dead people in their state). After New York is done counting corpses they will return the vents to the rest of the nation.

                We’re going to be playing Just In Time games with this.Report

              • George Turner in reply to Stillwater says:

                So while Trump was telling us this virus would be no big deal, Democrats were viciously attacking him for racism and xenophobia for banning arrivals from China.Report

              • Urusigh in reply to Stillwater says:

                “You’re in effect saying Trump was correct to tell American’s that the epidemic wouldn’t be a big deal because for Trump, the audience he was speaking to were rural red-staters. Not all Americans.”

                Mostly correct. I find it useful to remind people that the States are intermediary between the Federal government and the people. For a majority of states, Trump’s early assessment was correct. The economic damage from a prolonged shutdown will actually be worse than the pandemic itself. It’s a difference between thinking geographically vs weighting by population. Of course it isn’t perfectly calibrated for everyone everywhere, but it would be even more off base to speak to the entire country as if New York was representative of how bad it will be (which seems to be the tack the MSM are pushing).

                “It’s fine to note that as an account of Trump’s behavior but it should still make everyone’s blood run cold”

                I don’t see why. Panic and economic shutdowns also cause casualties, so I much prefer a measured assessment from the bully pulpit. The experts are still far from agreement and several notables have much less severe expectations than the models the media are emphasizing. It’s not “Trump vs the experts” it’s “Experts vs Experts” with Trump listening to some and not others.

                “As an example, ”

                Shrug, I haven’t heard anything about it, but it’s rather telling that your first assumption is that a major supply issue is determined primarily by whether or not a person said mean things about Trump. That’s not how federal acquisition works, it’s a morass of red tape and congressional mandates that even Presidents can’t easily alter. I find it far more likely that it’s simply the Feds put more orders in and get priority.Report

              • Dark Matter in reply to Stillwater says:

                In a typical year we have dozens of screams of wolf in the media, often by the environmentalists, without there actually being one.

                There isn’t much acknowledgement in the media nor the intellectual communities that this is even a problem.

                One can reasonably think Trump was correct to doubt there’s a problem as a reflex. Typically when someone says the world will end unless their issue is given priority, they’re not right, often they’re not even serious.Report

              • Marchmaine in reply to Stillwater says:

                No, no, no… the article is that the IYI were *all* telling us that the Corona Virus was no big deal… VOX tells us the current flu was even worse… that there’s no pandemic on the way… WHO tells us China was doing a fabulous job… masks are useless… and travel bans useless and racist, and on and on.

                The IYI were absolutely certain in all their wrongness, until they shifted (belatedly) and *ironically* at about the same time that Trump did too… +/- a week.

                He’s not apologizing for Trump… he’s apologizing for people not knowing which version of Expert Truth people are supposed to believe… especially since the IYI will simply “claim” belief they *didn’t* have after the fact. Which simply moots the question: what are we wrong about right now that we’re absolutely certain is the correct interpretation of events?

                There’s absolutely no epistemic check.Report

              • Stillwater in reply to Marchmaine says:

                the article is that the IYI were *all* telling us that the Corona Virus was no big deal

                But they weren’t all telling us that. Saying some writer a Vox equates to the entirety of Vox, or some writer at NYT equates to all writers at NYT, etc and so on is lazy and selective. From the time of Trump’s first press conference on Corona the MSM has belittled his overly optimistic view that the numbers would go down. As his lies and deception increased the MSM continued to criticize him for the irresponsibility of his deceptions. There’s a whole industry in the MSM dedicated to fact checking Trump’s lies, and admonishing him for deceiving the American people. Cable news networks are/were filled with entire shows providing straight dope on how criminal Trump’s negligence in the mitigation roll out was, and those critiques were provided in real time, not after the fact.

                MBD lives in a very different ideological world than I do, one a cannot even understand because his data points, the things he views as facts, seem like false beliefs about the world rather than accurate descriptions of it. And in this particular case – that the media didn’t believe covid was a big deal – he’s just wrong.

                (Additionally, since both you and Pinky have expressed admiration for MBS’s type of conservatism I’ve read some of his stuff, and for the life of me I can’t find any content there beyond what I’d expect from a computer spitting out conserva-ideological pablum.)Report

              • Stillwater in reply to Stillwater says:

                Adding to that:

                Giving you and MBD some credit here, I’m not sure what the complaint actually is. Is it that the WHO made a mistake in mid January when ti said covid would likely remain a regional epidemic, largely limited to China? Is it that Trump wasn’t honest with the American people about the Intelligence and other agencies assessment of the pandemic and the media “repeated those lies*? (Richard Burr heard the message loud and clear.)

                The administration lied about the scope of the epidemic and its response, yet plenty of the people in media reported that the administration was lying about scope of the epidemic as well as its response. Given that I just don’t see how terms like “all” and “everyone” fit into MBD’s narrative about Intellectual Idiots, or how it makes any sense except as a feel-good.Report

              • Marchmaine in reply to Stillwater says:

                I think the challenge perhaps is that you’re reading MBD through a Trump lens… so everything gets filtered as if its a Trump thing.

                If you will, MBD is post-Trump. He was post-Trump pre-Trump.

                But regarding the epistemic notion that “Hey, one thing at Vox does not Vox make” – the point isn’t that Vox said a thing; I think the interesting line is this:

                “Something about that medium [twitter] allows the journalists who occupy mainstream, opinion-setting media outlets to converge quickly on what they deem to be the highest-status opinion about current events.”

                And being new to twitter and epistemically sensitive… I think this is a sound insight. It has political and social implications.

                But that’s the main observation… our knowledge class was mostly wrong about the Virus. They were also wrong in a very particular anti-Trump vector. That’s not to apologize for Trump, that’s to recognize that this clerisy reasons backwards not forwards.

                That Trump was (and continues to be) mostly wrong is irrelevant to this particular point… though relevant vis-a-vis his prudential ability to make good decisions in the midst of this pandemic (for which he is simply unfit).

                I don’t know what to make of the pablum comment… he’s a conservative, but he’s one of the millenial post-Trump, almost/somewhat post-liberal conservative critics. Might be that all right of center stuff tastes the same to you.

                Though I hear losing your sense of taste is a symptom of C-19… so maybe get tested? 🙂Report

              • Stillwater in reply to Marchmaine says:

                I think the challenge perhaps is that you’re reading MBD through a Trump lens… so everything gets filtered as if its a Trump thing.

                Nope. I read it as written, words on a page, and tried to understand his argument. Trump never even entered my thoughts (especially since MBD strikes me as pretty like warm on Trump…).

                No, the thesis was that Trump “sensed” that amongst his base there was an already in-place resentment towards the Intellectual Class which Trump could appeal to by tightening their Intellectuals Are Idiots screws, thereby endangering the American public (so Brandon Daugherty believes) with a stream of bullshit and lies that feelz good. (The last part is my flourish, not attributable to MBD.)

                I’m not sure how Brandon came to the conclusion that the corona epidemic was serious, but he certainly didn’t come to it on his own (I, for one, tweeted at him repeatedly to take ir more seriously than he was), but it wasn’t because the MSM wasn’t talking about it. He’s just got a filter he perceives media through.

                And on this past point I think I have a point, since I’ve been taking the epidemic seriously for longer than he has, and I learned to do so from the MSM. I’d also add that his critique that the MSM IYI underplayed the virus fails to square with all the conservatives screeching that the MS was panicking and over-playing the epidemic’s scope.Report

              • Chip Daniels in reply to Marchmaine says:

                The challenge for me in reading MBT’s criticism is that he takes a banal and trivially true observation (that very intelligent people make colossal blunders and morally depraved judgements) and trumps it up (no pun intended) to a sweeping call for dismissal of all experts.

                A dismissal which is invoked whenever the expertise happens to be inconvenient and in challenging to one’s beliefs.

                Like for instance he gives a very long litany of what the IYI believes:

                Stalinism, Maoism, GMOs, Iraq, Libya, Syria, lobotomies, urban planning, low carbohydrate diets, gym machines, behaviorism, transfats, freudianism, portfolio theory, linear regression, Gaussianism, Salafism, dynamic stochastic equilibrium modeling, housing projects, selfish gene, election forecasting models, Bernie Madoff (pre-blowup) and p-values.

                See what’s missing?
                Yep, the Laffer Curve, trickle down economics, neoliberal economics; the beneficial effects of evangelical political action;

                In fact, the primary drivers of the worst public policy catastrophes of the past few decades appear nowhere on his list, yet all of them were developed and preached by the very same Ivy League credentialed Smartest Guys In The Room.

                The very same guys who were, how does he put again? Oh yeah:
                the inner circle of no-skin-in-the-game policymaking “clerks” and journalists-insiders, that class of paternalistic semi-intellectual experts with some Ivy league, Oxford-Cambridge, or similar label-driven education who are telling the rest of us 1) what to do, 2) what to eat, 3) how to speak, 4) how to think… and 5) who to vote for.

                But what’s so stupid about his observation is that one of the things that the IYI got wrong he says, is Iraq.

                But he doesn’t tell us which IYI was wrong!

                Because for every Harvard educated Bushie telling us that we would be welcomed as liberators, there was another Harvard alum telling us this was a mistake.

                So which Ivy Leaguer is truly wise, and which is the idiot?

                MBT doesn’t say, and appears not to know either, other than just using the power of hindsight.Report

              • Stillwater in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                and trumps it up (no pun intended) to a sweeping call for dismissal of all experts.

                I agree. And that’s one of my beefs with MBD in particular, but other so-called reasonable, moderate conservatives as well. The constant drumbeat takes the shape of a general criticism of media based on the example of a single instance, which is similar to their other favored drumbeat, a constant criticism of liberals based on single instances. (WHich amounts to the same thing, from their pov.) And that constant criticism – that relentlessly constant criticism – *might* be tolerable if they proposed alternatives which are better, in particular a clearly articulated set of policies which they advocate. But no. It’s just culture war stuff masquerading as a political philosophy without any substance beyond narrowly focused rejectionist critiques.Report

              • Marchmaine in reply to Chip Daniels says:

                Point of order… while I applaud you clicking past MBD to the source material… that list you provide is from the original article by Taleb (who would be NNT)… and is not specific to MBD or the point of his article.

                You could just as well add “Laffer Curve, trickle down economics, neoliberal economics; the beneficial effects of evangelical political action” and I’m not sure MBD would object.

                In fact, that’s probably what makes him *not* (merely) Conservative pablum.Report

  17. Aaron David says:

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Tuesday that she will attempt to pass the Senate’s coronavirus economic stimulus package – putting aside the alternative, projected $2.5 trillion measure that she proposed.

    The California Democrat said she’ll try to pass the Senate’s projected $1.8 trillion measure by unanimous consent, meaning House members can say yes without having to come to Capitol Hill to vote.

    “The easiest way to do it is for us to put aside some of our concerns for another day, and get this done,” Pelosi told CNBC. “If it has poison pills in it, and they know certain things are poison pills, then they don’t want unanimous consent – they just want an ideological statement.”

    I am wondering if it had something to do with this:

    Maybe the voters didn’t want the Genie Pops out of a Xmass Tree thing the D’s had going…Report

    • North in reply to Aaron David says:

      More likely Pelosi’s House bill served the exact purpose it was intended for, is no longer required and is being set aside. She got the oversight on the 500 billion fund she wanted and most of the other significant Dem asks in the Senate bill.

      And yeah, Trumps getting a rally round the flag effect on his approval rating that one gets during national disasters. We’ll see if that holds through to November- I wouldn’t bet on it.Report

      • Aaron David in reply to North says:

        Uh… I gotta admire your commitment to the narrative, but she got her cuelo handed to her.


        Oh, and Biden? He just massivley flubbed his Corona speech:


        • North in reply to Aaron David says:

          Heh, well if you assert “Pelosi lost” so strenuously then it surely must be so. Odd that they didn’t nominate a woke check-the-box-minority candidate or a raving socialist like the wild left-wing party you claim the Democratic party is would do.

          But I’m content. The Dems cooperated on the bailout instead of trying to stick it to the right the way the right did back in ’08 and they got their priorities and practical wants into the Senate bill (which also made it a much better bill). It’s good for the country and that’s the most important thing. Yeah it may help Trump potentially but that has to be a secondary consideration.Report

          • George Turner in reply to North says:

            The bill is back in the House, which Nancy kept in session for about two minutes without doing a thing. She’s obviously not done throwing tantrums.Report

            • North in reply to George Turner says:

              Honestly, George, you’re not even trying. The House is dispersed across the country and they’re certainly not going to pass any non-Senate bill by unanimous consent.Report

              • George Turner in reply to North says:

                AOC is threatening to make them all return and vote in person.Report

              • North in reply to George Turner says:

                Yeah, if she forces them all to come back and vote in person to pass the agreed upon Senate bill I’m sure they’ll be in the mood then to take up some more left wing bill she’s pushing. /sarcReport

              • Dark Matter in reply to North says:

                I predict her seat will be chosen to be eliminated by the Census.Report

              • North in reply to Dark Matter says:

                If they’re pissed enough at her they could do that, sure, but they’d better make sure there’s a solid politician occupying the new district she gets merged into or else they’ll just have AOC in a new congressional district and then she’ll be pissed.Report

              • Dark Matter in reply to North says:

                She deliberately destroyed 10k well paying jobs in NYC. Somewhere there are voters who aren’t happy about that and solid politicians are common.

                RE: she’ll be pissed
                She’s already doing things like trying to primary fellow Dems because they’re not Left enough. Fundamentally she’s a Democratic Socialist and not a Democrat.

                And someone has to draw the short straw and have their seat eliminated. If I were running that section she’d be on the short list of people I’d want out.Report

              • North in reply to Dark Matter says:

                Sure, she’s an agitator for her ideology and has been parlaying the fame the media and especially right wing media has been showering on her to try and advocate for her positions but she isn’t, for example, a Ted Cruz level shitheel. Everything I’ve heard about her suggests that she works with the party when things get tight. It may be she’ll get quietly merged and have to fight for her new district but I don’t think the case is as slam dunk as you think it is. There’re costs to doing something like that to her even if it succeeds.Report