In debate over debt limit, Democrats ask what Reagan would do

In the debate over raising the debt ceiling, Democrats are trying out a new strategy, asking Republicans: WWRD? What Would Reagan Do?

“Ronald Reagan worked with [former Democratic Speaker of the House] Tip O’Neill and Democrats to cut spending, raise revenues and reform Social Security,” President Obama said Saturday in his weekly address to the nation. “That kind of cooperation should be the least you expect from us.” (Dems afraid McConnell’s debt ceiling plan will make them look bad)

The section of the address is part of a larger attempt by Democrats to invoke the former president and conservative icon. The Hill reports that Democrats have begun to cite Reagan’s support for raising the debt ceiling when he was president to make a stronger argument for raising it now.

Some Republicans have announced that they won’t vote to raise the debt ceiling no matter what, most notably Minnesota Rep. Michele Bachmann, a contender for the Republican Party’s nomination for president.

But Democrats hope that by bringing Reagan into the debate, they’ll be able to sway some conservative Republicans who’ve rejected raising the debt limit.

“Ronald Reagan was a strong conservative. But Ronald Reagan said that there were important times for compromise for the good of the country,” Maryland Democratic Rep. Chris Van Hollen said.

“The debt ceiling was raised 17 times when Ronald Reagan was president, and as Alan Simpson — former Sen. Simpson said — that when push came to shove, Reagan agreed 11 times to packages that included revenue for the good of the country, for the good of compromise.”

Last week, Massachusetts Democratic Sen. John Kerry spoke about a 1983 letter Reagan wrote to then-Senate Majority Leader Howard Baker (R-TN) asking for his “help and support, and that of your colleagues, in the passage of an increase in the limit on the public debt.”

Illinois Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin, Maryland Democratic Rep. Donna Edwards and White House Press Secretary Jay Carney have all made similar arguments.

Congress has until August 2 to raise the debt limit before the U.S. defaults, according to the Treasury Department.

  • HoosYoDaddy

    Laughable and pathetic. RR did not, and would not, recklessly and wastefully pile on trillions in debt in (2) short years, pile on trillions more with a socialist takeover of healthcare, nor would he have bowed to dictators, apolgized for greatness, or ever called America unexceptional or non-Christian. Reagan loved America, Barry hates it. RR saved America from the malaise and destruction of the then worst POTUS in history while the reigning worst POTUS in history is desperately trying to finish the destruction. RR was the anti-Barry.

  • MartyS

    Democrats should be asking, what would Carter do? and then do the opposite of what (Carter/Obama) are doing.

  • Ankenyman

    I like McConnell and Ryan’s ideas on the budget. There is good commentary on this and Catholic social teaching on http://www.catholicurrent.com/#/.

  • jameszz

    I paid $32.67 for a XBOX 360 and my mom got a 17 inch T0shiba laptop for $94.83 being delivered to our house tomorrow by FedEX. I will never again pay expensive retail prices at stores. I even sold a 46 inch HDTV to my boss for $650 and it only cost me $52.78 to get. Here is the website we using to get all this stuff, CoolCent. cöm

  • ofallon

    The Democrats have to ask “What would Ronald Reagen do?” because Barak Obama won’t do anything except repeat a 1979 speech by Jimmy Carter.

  • Rumpus6

    Typical Democrat nonsense. For thirty years Reagan has been the epitome of evil (for a complete list see Republican Presidents of the last 300 years). Now when the Democrat President can’t find his butt with two hands, a flashlight, and a complete set of instructions they come up with this bogus plan.

    Isn’t it funny how they ridiculed Reagan when he was alive but now that he’s gone they attempt to use him as a ploy to misdirect voters. Absolutely contemptible.

  • Humorless

    Many on the Right actually believe…that Reagan “never raised taxes” and “made massive cuts in spending.”

    • Tailor.in.stitches

      Many on the left believe………

      Do you really want to play that game?

      • Humorless

        Yes, Tailor, I would. Go ahead try it. Go to your rightwing friends and say “Obviously if we got back to what Reagan did, no tax increases and big cuts in spending, we could have that same type of economic recovery”….and see how many correct you and how many nod in accordance.

        • Tailor.in.stitches

          Maybe , no probably, your friends are incredibly uneducated and fooled easily, but mine aren’t.

  • CrazyHungarian

    Reagan was a master at working with the opposition, at using the American public to pressure the opposition to support Reagan’s efforts and was the President of all Americans.
    Obama has NEVER shown any inclination to work with the opposition; has been on Television so much that an appearance by him on TV is an opportunity to get a snack and visit the bathroom; and lastly, he has shown all that he prefers to be the President only of progressives and the unions.

    • Hamilton-Jeffersonian

      Wow, you are about as delusional as they come. Obama has caved to the right on EVERYTHING.

      • MJHBAMA

        Even his so-called Healthcare? And what about all that crap during the lame-duck session?

        • Hamilton-Jeffersonian

          Obamacare was written by the insurance companies. There’s a reason that you’re not seeing them lobby against it. It’s an insurance company payoff. Obama loves corporations and banks – regular people, not so much.

      • Crosby

        Give me a hint as to what Obama has caved into, and please give me specifics.

        • Hamilton-Jeffersonian

          Name me something he HASN’T caved on. Obamacare was originally designed as a single payer system. Now it’s an insurance company pay off.

          • Crosby

            Ham still waiting for specifics, and then I will answer your question. Just remember when you answer with a question it becomes painfully obvious you do not have the answer, why waste time, as you cannot answer … yawn.