Senator Chuck Schumer delivered a fiery speech on the floor of the Capitol today, one in which he derided House Speaker John Boehner’s efforts to pass deficit cutting plan that had no hope of passing the Senate.
And Schumer stretched a zoological metaphor about as far as it could go.
“So our plea to the Speaker is stop continuing to throw pieces of red meat after red meat after red meat, piece after piece of red meat to that right-wing lion in your caucus. Start taming the lion. That’s what you have to do, because otherwise that lion will devour you and devour the economy of our country.”
Schumer also noted that if the debt ceiling is not raised, it will be a first in the country’s history, and said that it was against conservative principles to not pay past bills due.
And he ended with a plea for observers to notice who was making the compromises and who was not.
“It’s unfair when commentators and people say on the one hand the Democrats are uncompromising and on the other hand the Republicans aren’t compromising…We are willing to give on spending cuts, serious spending cuts that we don’t like and the other side says they’re not willing to give a nickel on revenues. It’s not each side is failing to give. It’s not that each side is compromising about equally. It’s not that each side has walked about the same distance to come up with a compromise. In this case, they have been unwilling, my Republican friends have been unwilling to compromise one jot, and we have been willing to do things very painful to us. So I would say to my friends who comment and write about this, be fair. Let the public know who is willing to move away from their hard-line position for the sake of compromise, for the sake of renewing the debt ceiling, for the sake of getting out large debt and deficit down, and who has refused to budge. I think the answer is pretty obvious.”