2. Bullying the bully pulpit
After President Obama whipped their presidential nominee, gained seats in both chambers of Congress, and stuffed a tax hike down their throats during the fiscal cliff, congressional Republicans see the sequester as a way to take some wind out of a confident president’s sails.
Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R) of California encapsulated the GOP’s critique of the president succinctly on Tuesday, arguing that it's the president whose done nothing about the sequester for more than a year and then suggesting that Mr. Obama's current series of speeches on the sequester are all about partisanship.
“Now as the time looms the President does exactly what he continues to do – a road show,” Congressman McCarthy as the president flew to Newport News, Va., to make his case for plugging the sequester with a mix of cuts and higher taxes.
In short, the sequester is a tool to bedevil the president in many ways, but perhaps the most importantly, to even the score.
“The president got his pound of flesh in the fiscal cliff negotiation, $600 billion in additional taxes over 10 years,” said Sen. John Cornyn (R) of Texas on Tuesday. “Now it's time for the balance part of that equation, which means we need to rein in federal spending.”