AUGUST 2, 2011

Congress has now approved a compromise [where I did most of the compromising] to reduce the deficit and avert a default that would have devastated our economy. It was a long and contentious [and terrorist-y] debate. And I want to thank the American people for keeping up the pressure on their elected officials to put politics aside and work together for the good of the country. [Not that your lawmakers listened.]

This compromise guarantees more than $2 trillion in deficit reduction. [Unless the next Congress decides to rip up that deal.] It’s an important first step to ensuring that as a nation we live within our means. [The next step is actually ensuring that as a nation we live within our means.] Yet it also allows us to keep making key investments in things like education and research that lead to new jobs, and assures that we’re not cutting too abruptly while the economy is still fragile. [Please stop being fragile, economy.]

This is, however, just the first step. [Didn’t I just say that?] This compromise requires that both parties work together on a larger plan to cut the deficit, which is important for the long-term health of our economy. [Has to happen sometime, right?] And since you can’t close the deficit with just spending cuts, we’ll need a balanced approach where everything is on the table. [Notice how in the center I am, independent swing voters?] Yes, that means making some adjustments to protect health-care programs like Medicare so they’re there for future generations. [No one tell Pelosi.] It also means reforming our tax code so that the wealthiest Americans and biggest corporations pay their fair share [Bill Gates will probably still vote for me, anyway]. And it means getting rid of taxpayer subsidies to oil and gas companies, and tax loopholes that help billionaires pay a lower tax rate than teachers and nurses. [Most Americans and sane policy analysts want centrist compromise, too. But being right doesn’t mean Congress will listen.]


Thanks very much, everybody. [Except Jim DeMint.]