Social mood impact: frustrated Dems, bold Republicans

We're seeing more political manifestations of negative social mood. The will of the electorate appears to be taking shape...although until some concrete reforms or legislation are passed, anything is still possible. Democrats still have a chance to turn things around and both parties are known for overreach and shooting themselves in the foot while in power. That said, it is Republicans who are starting to chip away at the Great Society programs from the 1960s. The GOP did not suddenly become bold leaders with principle. They are following public opinion. While specific ideas aren't popular yet, cutting spending is popular.

AP-CNBC Poll: Deficit-cutting ideas not popular

Forty-seven percent said the deficit should be reduced with spending cuts even if new education, health and energy programs were eliminated, but 46 percent said those programs should grow even if the red ink expands. Offered more than a dozen tax increases and spending cuts to help balance the budget, only four got majority support: Trim the federal workforce, cut their salaries, close some overseas military bases and end the tax deduction on home mortgage interest in exchange for lower income tax rates.

Some States Weigh Unthinkable Option: Ending Medicaid
In Washington state, which has a Democratic governor, Medicaid Director Doug Porter says he discussed the idea of dropping out of Medicaid with members of a citizen advisory committee the governor pulled together to tackle a $5.7 billion budget shortfall over the next two years.

"It's not a serious consideration, but it's illustrative that people are even thinking about it," Mr. Porter said. "That I'm doing it is stunning."

However, many elderly people rely on Medicaid to pay for long-term care at nursing homes, and that makes pulling out a "deal killer," Mr. Porter said. No good alternative currently exists to cover such nursing-home costs.

Major cuts are in store for Washington's Medicaid program anyway. To plug the budget gap, the state is proposing eliminating coverage of prescription drugs, physical therapy and vision, dental and hearing treatments for adults next year.

Some policy experts say the most feasible scenario would be withdrawing from Medicaid in 2014 when the new health-care law overhaul is set to add 16 million Americans to the program's ranks.
This explains why The Democratic Party spirals unidirectionally.
Is it hyperbolic to say the Democratic Party is in the midst of a nervous breakdown? I have been covering national politics since 1988, and I don't remember a situation quite like this. The signs of a crack-up are everywhere. Democrats still think they can somehow win a news cycle by demonizing John Boehner. Chuck Schumer goes on the Senate floor and suggests Democrats are getting the same political mileage out of "millionaires tax" that Republicans have gotten over the years from using "death tax."

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