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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Political Theory
Political Theory................................................................................................................................................................................................................................1
Partisanship – Still Exists................................................................................................................................................................................................................2
Bipartisanship Key to Pass..............................................................................................................................................................................................................3
Divided Government Not Significant..............................................................................................................................................................................................4
A2 Bipartisanship Key to Pass.........................................................................................................................................................................................................5
Bipartisanship Turn – Ignores Presidential Agenda.........................................................................................................................................................................6
Bipartisanship Turn – Ignores Presidential Agenda.........................................................................................................................................................................7
Bipartisanship Turn – Ignores Presidential Agenda.........................................................................................................................................................................8
Bipartisanship Turn – Ignore Presidential Agenda..........................................................................................................................................................................9
Lame Duck – No Push...................................................................................................................................................................................................................10
.......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................10
Lame Ducks = Advantage..............................................................................................................................................................................................................11
Lame Duck Destroy Party..............................................................................................................................................................................................................12
Lame Duck – No Vetoes................................................................................................................................................................................................................13
Political Capital Key to Agenda.....................................................................................................................................................................................................14
Presidential Leadership Key to Agenda.........................................................................................................................................................................................15
.......................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................15
Presidential Leadership Key to Agenda.........................................................................................................................................................................................16
A2 Bush Takes Blame....................................................................................................................................................................................................................17
President Gets Credit/Avoids Blame.............................................................................................................................................................................................18
Presidents Get Blame/Credit – Agencies.......................................................................................................................................................................................19
Blame Game – Conflicting Agenda...............................................................................................................................................................................................20
Concessions Key to Agenda...........................................................................................................................................................................................................21
A2 Concessions Key to Agenda.....................................................................................................................................................................................................22
Public Support Key to Agenda.......................................................................................................................................................................................................23
Party Control Key to Agenda.........................................................................................................................................................................................................24
GOP Base Key...............................................................................................................................................................................................................................25
Presidents Control Agenda.............................................................................................................................................................................................................26
Winners Win..................................................................................................................................................................................................................................27
Lobbyists Key to Agenda...............................................................................................................................................................................................................28
A2 Lobbyists Key..........................................................................................................................................................................................................................29
Filibuster – Not Prevent Pass.........................................................................................................................................................................................................30
Income President Need Party Unity...............................................................................................................................................................................................31
Coattails Key President Agenda.....................................................................................................................................................................................................32
Vetoes – Need Political Support....................................................................................................................................................................................................33

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Partisanship – Still Exists


Partisanship still exists
Nivola 6/16
Pietro S., Senior Fellow of Governance Studies @ The Brookings Institution, Is 2008 a Post-Partisan Year?
http://www.brookings.edu/opinions/2008/0610_postpartisan_nivola.aspx?p=1, WEDNESDAY JULY 16, 2008

The speculation these days is that American politics may be at the dawn of a “post-partisan” age. The profound
philosophical divide between Democrats and Republicans is said to be narrowing, and a new era of bipartisan comity just around the corner. Exhibit A:
Witness the rise of two seeming centrists as the presidential front-runners, McCain and Obama. Not so fast. A
chasm continues to separate the parties on salient issues. For all the relatively moderate-sounding tenor of the campaigns so far, the
substantive contrast between the candidates is deep and stark—arguably sharper than between contenders in the last two
presidential elections. In 2004, Democratic nominee John Kerry spoke of “winning” the war in Iraq, not about a firm
timetable for pulling American combat troops out. Nor did he champion high-level discussions, no preconditions asked, with America’s
nastiest foes. Barack Obama’s stance on these important matters clashes head-on with McCain’s. In 2000, Vice President Al
Gore (whose running mate was Senator Joe Lieberman) flirted with populism in some of his rhetoric. But, unlike Obama, Gore never distanced
himself from NAFTA, one of the Clinton administration’s signature achievements. Neither Kerry nor Gore proposed plans for
universal health care coverage, now a centerpiece of the Democratic agenda.

Parties are still divided among each other


Nivola 6/16
Pietro S., Senior Fellow of Governance Studies @ The Brookings Institution, Is 2008 a Post-Partisan Year?
http://www.brookings.edu/opinions/2008/0610_postpartisan_nivola.aspx?p=1, WEDNESDAY JULY 16, 2008

The ostensibly orthodox party lines of the McCain and Obama candidacies might eventually melt away when
either of these men becomes president. A healthy discount factor should always be applied to campaign rhetoric.
Yet, one doubts that either candidate would be able to disown with impunity his clearest campaign promises. Obama,
for example, has accorded himself precious little wiggle-room in his commitment to withdraw expeditiously from Iraq. Similarly, McCain has not left
himself much space to renege on such matters as his pledge to extend (deficits notwithstanding) the Bush
administration’s tax reductions. Powerful constituencies in the respective party bases will hold these leaders to their word, or at least punish them
if they stray. Ask George H.W. Bush what happened to a president who first uttered “read my lips” and then tried to say, in essence, “I changed my mind.”
So, two notes of caution: Don’t discount campaign positions entirely, and don’t be too beguiled by the style or tone in
which they get packaged. President Bush came to the White House claiming to be “a uniter, not a divider.” The
spirit of the slogan had been heard before. As a presidential candidate in 1968, Richard M. Nixon, too, had told the nation that it needed a
leader who would “unite America.” But in both cases it was just a matter of time before the talk of unity, change and new politics faded, and old partisan
polemics resurfaced with a vengeance. Why the polarization of our parties has become a firm fixture in American politics, and if anything has intensified, is
a long story that’s been the focus of a three-year joint study by the Brookings and Hoover institutions. The central finding of the study is that
the roots of our polarized politics lie not only in the postures of political elites--such as contestants appealing to
the staunchly liberal or conservative partisans in nominating primaries and caucuses, delegates attending party conventions, politicians
elected to Congress in safely liberal or conservative states or districts, and so forth. Polarization now also runs quite deep within the
mass electorate. There, Democratic and Republican voters remain very much at odds on a significant range of
questions—everything from how leniently to treat undocumented immigrants to what America’s role in the world should be.

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Bipartisanship Key to Pass


Bipartisanship key to overcome presidential vetoes
Ornstein 5/14
Norman J. Ornstein, Scholar at American Enterprise Institute, A Week of Activity Can't Mask the Hard Feelings in Congress
http://www.aei.org/publications/pubID.27994,filter.all/pub_detail.asp, Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The good news is that Congress


is buckling down to a full schedule of meaty, substantive issues, the most robust planned
agenda in a long time. The bad news? It will be nothing short of a miracle if we end up the week with anything
significant that is on its way to presidential signature--or if we see any signs of hope that we are emerging from the prolonged
unhealthiness in our politics and policy process in Washington. The plans for action range from the long-awaited omnibus farm bill to the war funding in the
supplemental with its range of add-ons, including a new GI bill and an extension of unemployment benefits. Add to those the Public Safety Employer-
Employee Cooperation Act to force states and localities to engage in collective bargaining with its police and firefighters, the flood insurance bill and the
attempt to suspend contributions to the Strategic Petroleum Reserve. This week, indeed this whole month, will be a key test in whether the
political process in Washington can rise above the dysfunction that has been the norm for this Congress. Last week,
the House was dominated by interminable delays and protests by the minority at the majority's abuse of the regular order by bypassing the Appropriations
Committee and process. Leave aside the irony of indignation coming from lawmakers who made a habit of bypassing the regular order on appropriations and
elsewhere; the spectacle reflected a House as deeply divided along partisan lines as it was in the previous Congress--and a House
with no common denominator of trying to do something to solve the problems we have at home and abroad. The problem has been exacerbated,
of course,by the president. President Bush signaled after the 2006 elections that he believed that he and the newly elected Democratic Congress could
do some business together, on immigration, education, energy and the environment, among other issues. But when his immigration plan went
down the tubes in the Senate--driven in that direction when only 12 of 49 Republican Senators rallied behind their own president's signature
domestic goal--the aim of significant progress on policy built around a significant working relationship with
Democrats went with it. What followed was a string of vetoes (after six years of none) and even more veto threats that both
constipated the legislative process and gave Congressional Republicans traction to block action or at least gum up the works. It also gave Congressional
Democrats traction to use the process any way they could to gain leverage over the president in a protracted policy war.

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Divided Government Not Significant


The legislative and executive branches are able to withstand the effects of divided government
Conley 3
Richard S., Assistant prof. of political science @ University of Florida, The Presidency, Congress and Divided Government
pg 221 third paragraph

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

A2 Bipartisanship Key to Pass


Just because a bill is bipartisan doesn’t mean that it ensures passage
PR Newswire US 7
American Diabetes Association: Embryonic Stem Cell Research Offers Great Promise for Americans with Diabetes;
ADA Urges U.S. House of Representatives to Pass Reintroduced Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act; H.R. 3 Offers Best Hope to Advance Search for a
Diabetes Cure
Lexis, January 10, 2007 Wednesday

The American Diabetes Association (ADA) -- the nation's leading voluntary health organization supporting diabetes research, information and advocacy --
today urged the U.S. House of Representatives to pass the Stem Cell Research Enhancement Act (H.R. 3). The ADA is a
strong supporter of the legislation, which would accelerate stem cell research by easing existing restrictions and supporting research that uses embryonic
stem cells, while maintaining strict ethical guidelines. Congress passed the legislation last year with bipartisan support, but was
unable to overcome President Bush's veto. A vote on the reintroduced legislation is expected in the House of Representatives on Thursday.

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Bipartisanship Turn – Ignores Presidential Agenda


Organized bipartisanship in Congress leads to Congressional agenda but not presidential agenda
Conley 3
Richard S., Assistant prof. of political science @ University of Florida, The Presidency, Congress and Divided Government
pg 4 last paragraph through pg 5 last paragraph

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Bipartisanship Turn – Ignores Presidential Agenda


Organized congressional consensus ignores presidential agenda
Conley 3
Richard S., Assistant prof. of political science @ University of Florida, The Presidency, Congress and Divided Government
pg 8 last paragraph through pg 9 third paragraph

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Bipartisanship Turn – Ignores Presidential Agenda


Strong unification in congress ignores the presidential agenda – very hard for president to build
political resources after congressional majority shifts
Conley 3
Richard S., Assistant prof. of political science @ University of Florida, The Presidency, Congress and Divided Government
pg 12 second paragraph through third paragraph

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Bipartisanship Turn – Ignore Presidential Agenda


Political methods today have led to Congress controlling the agenda – majorities ignore the
presidential agenda and support theirs instead
Conley 3
Richard S., Assistant prof. of political science @ University of Florida, The Presidency, Congress and Divided Government
pg 214 third paragraph through pg 215 first paragraph

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Lame Duck – No Push


Lame ducks can’t push policies
The Sunday Telegraph (London) 7
Allies desert 'lame duck president' Unable to pass domestic policy and with his hands tied abroad, Bush can achieve no more, say his former aides
Lexis, April 8, 2007 Sunday

Bush a "lame duck'' who had forfeited the support of senior Republicans. They spoke out after a week in
Mr Nuzzo branded Mr
which a
former member of Mr Bush's inner circle launched a withering description of how the president had
"become more secluded and bubbled-in'' with a shrinking band of loyalists. Matthew Dowd, the chief strategist of the 2004 re-
election campaign, said that Mr Bush had lost his once fabled "gut-level bond with the American people'' and called for him to respond to a growing public
desire to pull out of Iraq. The sense of a presidency unravelling was reinforced last week when it was revealed that several of Mr Bush's key aides were to
depart the White House, including deputy national security adviser, Meghan O'Sullivan, the architect of the surge strategy to boost troop numbers in Iraq,
and Peter Wehner, a strategic thinker who sold Mr Bush's ideas to the power players in Washington. Mr Frum said: "The Bush White House has always been
a strong band of brothers. But the same things that bring your triumphs also bring your tragedy. There is little difference of views. If you're wrong, it's hard
to change direction.'' Domestically, Mr Bush is seen to have failed on two pressing issues. His plan to overhaul social security
policy, once seen as potentially a key part of his legacy, is stillborn, and he is at odds with his own party over plans to relax immigration rules.
The root cause of his weakness is the Democrats' seizure of both the Senate and House of Representatives in
November's mid-term elections. Without sufficient support to push legislation through Congress, the president was
finished, said Mr Frum. "There's no domestic agenda,'' he said. "There's no possibility at all of the president advancing
anything that is acceptable to both the Republicans and Democrats.'' Mr Nuzzo, who served as policy director for George Bush,
added: "He's a lame duck. Any affirmative domestic policy is at an end. Republicans have lost patience with the
Bush administration. At this point the only parts of the presidential office he can fulfill are those that do not require
cooperation with the legislative branch - which means foreign policy.''

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Lame Ducks = Advantage


Lame ducks have an advantage – they can force Congress to have to override their veto
Christian Science Monitor 7
Bush's lame-duck advantage
Lexis, April 27, 2007, Friday

As his term winds down in disarray, President Bush enjoys what could be called the lame-duck advantage: He
doesn't have to worry about losing at the polls. He has devoted little attention after the Virginia Tech massacre to issues such as campus
safety and gun control, except to reiterate support for gun ownership. He has left it to the Democrats to take on the gun problems that
usually divide Congress. Senate majority leader Harry Reid says, "I hope there's not a rush to do anything. We need to take a deep breath." Earlier
in his administration, Mr. Bush might have by now accepted the resignation of Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, a liability for the administration. But
these days, Bush is playing the "loyalty card" all the way. After Mr. Gonzales's disastrous appearance before the Senate Judiciary
Committee last week, Bush said he has more confidence than ever in his beleaguered attorney general. For Democrats, the
most ticklish situation has become the $124 billion emergency spending bill for Iraq and Afghanistan. With growing sentiment for ending military
involvement, the Democrats are looking for some compromise with the White House: a timetable, benchmarks; the latest being advisory opinion. The
White House, less concerned about losing votes in the next election, is sticking to its guns (almost literally). The
legislation passed by Congress this week - with its Iraq withdrawal schedule - is certain to be met with a presidential
veto. And, since he is less concerned about voters, Mr. Bush apparently feels he can afford a veto, which is not likely to
be overridden anyway.

Lame Duck does not mean the President is powerless


The Hotline 7
BUSH; MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING
Lexis, July 27, 2007 Friday

National Journal's Cannon looks at whether or not Bush can be considered a lame duck, noting that Bush
"is not extinct, but his troubles are
manifest." GMU prof. James Pfiffner: "President Bush may be a lame duck politically, but he is not a lame duck as chief
executive and will lose many of his powers only" upon leaving office; "He is still head of the executive branch and
commander-in-chief, and has many unilateral powers that he can -- and has -- used." But "it's indisputable that Bush's
influence has waned, both inside and outside his political party." Many will try to point a specific date at which Bush became a lame duck, but "it could
simply be that Bush's ability to drive great events was compromised many months before the storm," when he was sworn in for a 2nd term. "The 22nd
Amendment introduced a systematic weakness to the highest office in the land."

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Lame Duck Destroy Party


Lame ducks are destructive to their party
The Advertiser (Australia) 6
A lame duck in the White House
Lexis, November 10, 2006 Friday

IT IS concerning that at a time of world tension on many fronts, the United States congressional elections have left President George W. Bush
publicly humiliated and politically shackled. His authority, both in the United States and the world, has been diminished. He has become a
Republican lame duck in the White House. Although President Bush will remain in the White House until the 2008 elections, in the turn of
a page in history, his Republican Party has lost control of the House of Representatives, the Senate and, presumably, the
confidence of the American people. He has responded by accepting the resignation of Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld but a scapegoat is
hardly likely to neutralise the mounting disenchantment in the United States over the long-term military engagement in Iraq. The Democrats must
use their new-found congressional potency conservatively and responsibly. They have the power to veto any
legislative initiatives. That path would be foolish and destructive. It will be more dangerous for the Republicans, and more
beneficial to the Democrats, to let the administration govern with only limited constraints.

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Lame Duck – No Vetoes


Lame Ducks issue empty veto threats
Riechmann 7
Deb, Associated Press Writer, Bush pushes agenda without Congress
August 16, 2007 Thursday 7:32 PM GMT

With 17 months left in office, Bush


has veto power and an arsenal of other executive powers to change policy. But his
critics say he moved across a symbolic line toward lame duck status on Monday when his longtime political adviser, Karl Rove,
announced he was leaving the latest in a growing line of senior officials to head for the door in the closing months of the administration. Rove said there was
unfinished business on energy, education and health care that the president would continue to pursue, with or without Congress' help. Rove said the
administration might end up doing things by executive action. "We have No Child Left Behind, which we can either do by law or regulation; we want to do it
by law," Rove said. "The energy, 20-in-10 we can do both by legislation and regulation." The Democratic Congress is going to be challenging Bush every
step of the way on his agenda, the budget and particularly the war in Iraq as he runs out of time and influence and 2008 elections overshadow him. John
Podesta, former White House chief of staff for President Clinton, said Bush is "running into a brick wall in Congress" and will be forced to use executive
action to further his domestic policy desires. "Hardly a bill goes by that he doesn't issue a veto threat," Podesta said. "The places where he could find
common ground, he's in a `Just say no' mode. I find that kind of surprising given the place he's at in his presidency." White House advisers
blame the Democratic Congress for some inaction on the president's agenda, although it was Bush's fellow
Republicans who helped sink his immigration bill. The White House says Bush still has clout in Congress and points to recent legislative
successes: signing a bill to implement many remaining recommendations of the Sept. 11 Commission and getting temporary authority to expand the
government's ability to eavesdrop without warrants on communications that pass through the United States.

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Political Capital Key to Agenda


Political Capital key to push agenda
USA TODAY 7
Bush's job-approval rating stuck below 40%; Only Nixon, Truman had longer slumps
Lexis, April 9, 2007 Monday

Bush's job-approval rating in a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll taken Monday through Thursday is 38%. His standing has stayed below 40% for seven consecutive
months. Since the advent of modern polling, only two presidents have suffered longer strings of such low ratings. One was Harry
Truman, whose popularity sank during the final 26 months of his tenure as the Korean War stalemated. The other was Richard Nixon during the 13 months
leading up to his resignation amid the Watergate scandal. "It's pretty hard for a president to get ratings this low in general, and then
to be in the position where you basically don't budge -- that's been reserved for some of the least popular
presidents during the worst times of the last 60 years," says Jeffrey Jones of the Gallup Poll, who analyzed the historic data. White House
spokeswoman Dana Perino said Bush pays little attention to polls and is "laser-focused" on such issues as fighting terrorism and reforming immigration. "If
we're reviewing consecutive streaks, one of the most impressive is our 60-plus months of economic growth and 42 months of job creation," she said. "Look,
we're aware of the polls," Perino said. "We realize the war is unpopular and that people wanted to see a change. That's why the president announced a new
strategy in Iraq and Gen. (David) Petraeus is starting to implement it." Faltering public support drains a president's political capital
and makes it more difficult for him to persuade others to follow his lead -- for instance, to support embattled Attorney General
Alberto Gonzales or pass an Iraq spending bill without restrictions.

Political capital key to agenda


The Daily Telegraph (London) 6
How president's 'political capital' has slipped away
Lexis, November 8, 2006 Wednesday

Mr Bush also took on his own party, this time on immigration reform. His business-friendly proposal for a guest-worker programme divided Republicans
in Congress, many of whom insisted upon tougher enforcement and the construction of a fence along the Mexican border. The failure
to achieve his
goals on either of the two biggest domestic policy issues of his second term drained strength from his presidency
and undermined confidence that he could control the agenda and spend the political capital he had trumpeted.

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Presidential Leadership Key to Agenda


Divided government frequently hits a roadblock where the only way for presidents to pass their
policies is through cooperation with Congress
Conley 3
Richard S., Assistant prof. of political science @ University of Florida, The Presidency, Congress and Divided Government
pg 39 second paragraph through pg 40 first paragraph

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Presidential Leadership Key to Agenda


Presidential leadership in Congress is key to ensure legislation and the agenda
Conley 3
Richard S., Assistant prof. of political science @ University of Florida, The Presidency, Congress and Divided Government
pg 216 second paragraph through third paragraph

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

A2 Bush Takes Blame


Politicians avoid getting the blame – rather avoid potential blame than take credit
Weaver 86
Kent, a professor at the Public Policy Institute at Georgetown University The Politics of Blame Avoidance
Journal of Public Policy, Vol. 6, No. 4, (Oct. - Dec., 1986), pp. 371-398

Politicians are motivated primarily by the desire to avoid blame for unpopular actions rather than by seeking to
claim credit for popular ones. This results from voters' 'negativity bias': their tendency to be more sensitive to real or potential
losses than they are to gains. Incentives to avoid blame lead politicians to adopt a distinctive set of political strategies,
including agenda limitation, scapegoating, 'passing the buck' and defection (jumping on the bandwagon') that are different than those they
would follow if they were primarily interested in pursuing good policy or maximizing credit-claiming
opportunities. These strategies in turn lead to important policy effects, including a surrender of discretion even when it offers important credit-claiming
opportunities.

Policymakers have increased needs to avoid taking blame


Weaver 86
Kent, a professor at the Public Policy Institute at Georgetown University The Politics of Blame Avoidance
Journal of Public Policy, Vol. 6, No. 4, (Oct. - Dec., 1986), pp. 371-398

Fiscal stress has given politics an increasingly zero-sum cast. Programs are forced to compete in the political marketplace for funds.
Budget deficits have also increased the involvement of budget guardians (notably the Office of Management and Budget and
congressional Budget commit- tees) in public policymaking. These developments have undercut the ability of clientele and policy
specialists to keep decision-making within a narrow (and favorable) policy subsystem, and have forced politicians to
engage in more loss-allocating activities. Incentives for blame avoidance have also increased in recent years by the
decline of party as a determinant of electoral behavior. Incumbent legislators have responded to party decline '[b]y developing a
reputation with a minimal amount of partisan or ideological content, . . . induc[ing] constituents to evaluate them separately from the state of the nation and
the performance of parties and administrations' (Ferejohn and Fiorina, I985: 94-95). In this situation, voters are likely to continue returning
the incumbent unless they are given a reason not to. Legislators know it, and their potential opponents know it.
Thus legislators must be concerned primarily with avoiding giving their opponents a popular election issue. But
challengers have been given new tools as well. In particular, the ability of television advertising to present quick, simple negative
images in voters' minds can undermine confidence in the incumbent, reinforcing legislators' reluctance to vote
against positions likely to appeal to poorly informed constituencies.

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

President Gets Credit/Avoids Blame


Decisions by policymakers are based around accepting credit or avoiding blame
Weaver 86
Kent, a professor at the Public Policy Institute at Georgetown University The Politics of Blame Avoidance
Journal of Public Policy, Vol. 6, No. 4, (Oct. - Dec., 1986), pp. 371-398

GENERATING AND AVOIDING BLAME: Policymakers' motivations are not determined entirely by the
distribution of costs and benefits among their constituents. They are also determined by the way choices are structured (Riker, I986).
If, for example, alternatives which place policymakers' and constituents' interests in direct conflict can be kept off the
agenda, policymakers may be able to reduce blame-avoiding behavior. On the other hand, the importance of blame-
avoiding motivations among policymakers can provide an important boost to those with opposing views. The
motives of those opponents may be based on their own notions of good policy or desire to claim credit with their
own political constituencies rather than upon blame avoidance. Nor is it necessary that a majority of policymakers (legislators, for
example) have strong blame-avoiding motivations for there to be a substantial impact on public policy: it is enough that blame-avoiders hold the balance of
power in decision-making. If sponsors of 'hard to vote against' legislation such as Congressional pay freezes and Social Security benefit increases can force
the issue onto the agenda and shape it in such a way that it activates blame-generating pressures, they can use others' fears of electoral retribution to force
blame-avoiders to support their own proposals.

President will receive credit

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Presidents Get Blame/Credit – Agencies


The President will take the credit or blame for agency actions

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Blame Game – Conflicting Agenda


Blame games occur when Bush and Congress have conflicting agendas
Gilmour 1
John B. Department of Government College of William & Mary, Sequential Veto Bargaining and Blame Game Politics as Explanations of Presidential
Vetoes
http://jbgilm.people.wm.edu/veto.pdf

Until recently there


has been little scholarly consideration of why presidential vetoes occur, perhaps because the answer seemed
obvious. Vetoes occur, one might reasonably conclude, because Congress passes bills the president does not want to become law. Passage
of
offensive legislation is undeniably the root cause of vetoes, but that explanation is incomplete. It begs the question of why Congress
passes bills that the president will veto even though the president is in frequent communication with Congress about whether he will veto proposed bills.
Given the ample communication between branches, it is surprising that differences cannot be resolved without a veto. Vetoes represent bargaining failures,
and the cause of these failures requires explanation. There are currently two well-developed, contradictory theories explaining why presidential vetoes occur.
A “blame-game” theory holds that vetoes occur because Congress deliberately provokes them by passing bills that
the president detests, knowing they will be vetoed. The “sequential veto bargaining” theory holds that vetoes occur because Congress lacks complete
information about what bills the president will sign, and sends the president bills unsure of whether they will be vetoed. This paper tests these alternative
explanations and finds that blame game politics accounts for far more vetoes than incomplete information.

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Concessions Key to Agenda


In divided government concessions are key to ensure legislation
Conley 3
Richard S., Assistant prof. of political science @ University of Florida, The Presidency, Congress and Divided Government
pg 21 second paragraph through pg 22 first paragraph

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

A2 Concessions Key to Agenda


Concessions won’t work – Democrats are skeptical
The New York Times 7
Democrats Face Limits In Reshaping Bush Budget
Lexis, February 6, 2007 Tuesday

One development could reopen the tax cuts to revision this year, Democrats
say: a signal from the administration that it would be
willing to consider a repeal of some cuts for the wealthiest as part of a deal to pay for other priorities. The issues most
often mentioned that might entice Democrats to the bargaining table with the administration would be a package to finance future Social Security benefits,
possibly combined with a curb on some benefits. Democrats might also want to cut a deal over the alternative minimum tax, which was devised to make sure
that wealthy taxpayers with numerous deductions paid some taxes but which is increasingly ensnaring the middle class because of inflation. Democrats say
that in both cases the administration would have to move first to put discussion of taxes on the table. Both Treasury Secretary Henry M.
Paulson Jr. and Rob Portman, director of the Office of Management and Budget, have dropped hints of such deals, ruling out ''preconditions'' for talks on
Social Security. The implication is that private investment accounts to replace Social Security for future retirees are not a requirement for a deal. ''By saying
there are no preconditions and we should all come to the table, that was a change in position,'' Mr. Portman told reporters Monday, noting that in the past the
administration had pushed its plan for the investment accounts from the outset. He also said it was an ''olive branch'' to propose the
accounts but to delay their enactment until 2012. Democrats remain skeptical and distrustful. They note, for instance, a recent
comment by Vice President Dick Cheney to Fox News that overtures by Mr. Paulson and Mr. Portman did not signal a change in administration attitudes on
taxes, only a desire to get Democrats to negotiate. Moreover, despite Mr. Portman's talk of olive branches, Democrats see only
trapdoors. They say Mr. Bush's claim to reach the goal of balancing the budget by 2012 rested on what they see as shaky assumptions.

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Public Support Key to Agenda


Public support key for Bush to push policies
USA TODAY 7
'Lightning rod' reshaped politics
Lexis, August 17, 2007 Friday

The Wall Street Journal, in an editorial: "The events of September


11 and Iraq have made this predominantly a war presidency, and that fact has also
colored Rove's record for better or worse. For the better, it provided
the political capital to retake the Senate in 2002, pass the
Bush tax cuts that spurred the economy, and frame the Bush Doctrine. ... For the worse, the trouble in Iraq sapped Bush's
public support early in his second term and diminished his ability to pass major domestic reform. ... Rove is no Merlin or
Rasputin. ... He is above all a George Bush man. His rare mastery of history, demographics and policy made him a formidable political force, and we suspect
it is his success far more than his methods that infuriates his critics."

Public support is key to the president’s agenda


CNN 5
3-29, Lexis

KING: The president won that election, Dana, but he is in the middle of another campaign to get his domestic agenda, principally Social Security, through
the Congress. They cannot be happy at the White House about the timing of this. Are they worried? BASH: Well, certainly they understand here that the
president's credibility and that his public support is really crucial to getting his domestic agenda passed, primarily Social
Security. And they do understand that his poll numbers, as we've been reporting over the past several days, have -- they have been going down.

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Party Control Key to Agenda


Party control is key to ensure legislative success for president – divided government poses unique
challenges
Conley 3
Richard S., Assistant prof. of political science @ University of Florida, The Presidency, Congress and Divided Government
pg 217 second paragraph through pg 218 first paragraph

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

GOP Base Key


GOP base key to the agenda
Chaddock 7
Gail Russell, Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor, Bush tries to win back GOP lawmakers
June 14, 2007

For President Bush to pull off a legacy in the final 19 months of his presidency, he needs to shore up support
within GOP ranks on Capitol Hill, especially among those who will face voters in 2008. From immigration and the Iraq war to embryonic stem-cell
research and hirings and firings at the Justice Department, Republican lawmakers are increasingly breaking with the president on
key votes - and the defections are coming from many who were once his staunchest supporters. Thirty-eight Senate Republicans voted against moving
ahead on immigration reform last week, sidelining Mr. Bush's top domestic priority. Then, on Monday, seven Republicans - five of them up for reelection in
2008 - joined all Senate Democrats in a vote of no confidence in Attorney General Alberto Gonzales. But the most searing intraparty rows could come in
early September, when Congress plans a close look at progress in the war in Iraq. "If President Bush had been a more popular president running a more
effective war in Iraq, Republicans would still be in the majority, and that's how many of them still look at it," says Jennifer Duffy, senior analyst with the
Cook Political Report. Until Republicans lost control of the House and Senate in the midterm election in November, Bush sustained a level of support from
his own party that his father and President Ronald Reagan seldom approached. Senate Republicans have backed Bush on key votes about
85 percent of the time during his presidency, according to a January survey by Congressional Quarterly. But the Iraq war and, most recently,
the president's support for comprehensive immigration reform have eroded Bush's standing with his Republican base and emboldened Republican lawmakers
on Capitol Hill to go their own way. "The problem for the president is that the coalition of ... Republicans who are alienated
and opposing him shifts from issue to issue, so it requires different responses and palliatives," says Ross Baker, a political
scientist at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, N.J. GOP senators who are straying

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Presidents Control Agenda


Presidents control the agenda setting

26
HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Winners Win
Presidents can use wins to create momentum
Ornstein 4
Norman, scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, ACT TWO: FOR BUSH, NO CAKEWALK IN CONGRESS
Lexis, November 14

There are other ways the


president could begin his second term. Perhaps he'll be able to start with some issues that are left over from
his first term, such as medical malpractice reform and his comprehensive energy bill, using
his political capital to ram them through, and
then using the capital replenished by those victories to build momentum until he's ready to fight the larger battles on Social
Security and taxes.

Political capital decreases if not used – it helps regenerate itself when used
Ornstein 2
Norman Ornstein, scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, What cards should Bush play?
Lexis, January 28, 2002

That lesson is as clear now as it was then: Political capital is perishable. You use it or you lose it. It is a lesson Bush junior has mentioned
himself, and one his political advisers, Karl Rove, refers to often. Bush now has an approval rating in the mid-80s, a bit lower than at his peak, but still
stratospheric. He has erased any serious doubts about his qualifications to serve, or the legitimacy of his victory. He has as much political capital in the
bank as there is gold in Fort Knox. So what does he use it for? A string
of domestic issues are possibilities, but economic stimulus sits atop the heap.
If he uses his political
capital skillfully, he will first help Americans, many of whom are hurting as a result of the recession, and he will get
more political capital back in return.

27
HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Lobbyists Key to Agenda


Lobby groups are extremely prevalent in government

28
HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

A2 Lobbyists Key
Lobbyists no longer have an influence in government – anti-corruption bill limits their influence
The Philadelphia Inquirer 7
Extreme makeover, Congress edition
Lexis, January 23, 2007

The U.S. Senate has approved one of the strongest anti-corruption bills in a generation to crack down on coziness
between lobbyists and lawmakers. Showing an unusual level of bipartisan cooperation, senators agreed to shed more light on their fund-raising
practices. They even committed to paying a more honest fare when lobbyists fly them hither and yon on corporate jets. It's rare that lawmakers
take such concrete steps to limit the corrupting influences that protect their incumbency. The House, which earlier
adopted new ethics rules but must now match the Senate's stricter lobbying guidelines, should make sure Congress doesn't lose momentum in this
needed effort. Then House-Senate negotiators should send completed legislation to the president as soon as possible.

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Filibuster – Not Prevent Pass


Filibusters don’t obstruct Senate business – constructed approach to them
Ornstein 3
Norman J. Ornstein, Scholar at American Enterprise Institute, The Debate to End All Debate
http://www.aei.org/publications/filter.all,pubID.17199/pub_detail.asp, Wednesday, May 14, 2003

Attempts to change the Senate's filibuster rule rarely succeed, partly because the attempts themselves are
vulnerable to filibuster. In 1975, Senator Walter Mondale, with assistance from Vice President Nelson Rockefeller, proposed that Rule 22 be revised
by a simple majority vote, with the move to change the rules itself not subject to filibuster. The result was even more extended debate, followed by bitterness
and recriminations; eventually the vice president apologized to the Senate. Four years later, as vice president, Mr. Mondale discussed ruling that the Senate
was not a continuing body from one election to the next and thus could write its rules afresh--with no filibuster. Fearing the fallout, he wisely dropped the
idea. While filibusters have long been a major weapon for senators and parties, their use has changed over the past
40 years. For
most of its history, the filibuster resembled the one depicted in Mr. Smith Goes to Washington: one or
more senators would take to the floor and debate around the clock to block action on something about which they
felt deeply. Of course, these filibusters were inconvenient to the Senate and interfered with the rest of the legislative calendar. So in
1961, Senate leaders adopted a two-track approach, allowing other business to go on while a filibuster took place,
avoiding the cots-in-the-hall drama and pain of the old-fashioned filibuster. Instead, there would be periodic votes to see if the three-fifths quota could be
reached. This had the effect of making filibusters almost routine. Filibusters now happen all the time, but basically
change nothing about Senate business--except to raise the bar for passage from 51 votes to 60. This is wrongheaded and unfortunate. For most
issues, a sliding scale of cloture votes, to allow for extended debate but also force eventual votes, makes sense. (For significant and highly charged issues--
including judicial nominations--the traditional 24-hour filibuster process still should apply.) Dr. Frist has proposed something similar for all presidential
nominations. But reform should proceed in a straightforward fashion under existing rules.

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HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Income President Need Party Unity


Difficult conditions for incoming presidents collapse their legislative leadership – empirically
proven
Conley 3
Richard S., Assistant prof. of political science @ University of Florida, The Presidency, Congress and Divided Government
pg 192 last paragraph through pg 193 second paragraph

31
HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Coattails Key President Agenda


Coattails ensure presidential success in Congress
Conley 3
Richard S., Assistant prof. of political science @ University of Florida, The Presidency, Congress and Divided Government
pg 17 second paragraph

32
HBR SDI 08 Politics Internals

Vetoes – Need Political Support


Vetoes mean nothing without political support
Abramowitz and Kane 6/16
Michael and Paul, Washington Post Staff Writers, Congress Easily Overrides Medicare Veto
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/07/15/AR2008071501361_pf.html, Wednesday, July 16, 2008

President Bush
sought to block a bill yesterday aimed at forestalling an 11 percent cut in payments to doctors taking care of Medicare patients,
but Congress quickly overrode his veto. The House voted 383 to 41 to override the veto, while the Senate voted 70 to 26, in both cases
far more than the two-thirds necessary to block the president's action. With organized medicine and other lobbies
promoting the popular measure in an election year, Republicans broke heavily from the White House. A total of 153
House Republicans voted to defy the White House, 24 more than in a June 24 vote that started the momentum toward passage of the Medicare doctors' bill
yesterday. Twenty-one Senate Republicans voted for the bill this time, including four senators who had voted "nay" in the
two previous Medicare votes. The Medicare bill is the third, along with the recent farm bill and a water resources bill, to become law despite Bush's veto.
Overall, Bush has vetoed 12 pieces of legislation during his presidency, At issue in this bill was how the government should respond
to a planned reduction in Medicare doctors' fees, mandated by a formula that requires the cuts if certain spending targets are not reached. Under the formula,
a 10.6 percent cut in fees for doctors was supposed to go into effect July 1, but Congress overwhelmingly voted instead to reduce the reimbursement to
insurance companies that serve Medicare beneficiaries under its managed-care program. Those reductions would allow the postponement of the pay cut to
doctors for 18 months, but would cost the insurers $14 billion over five years.

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