One Big Andrew Mellon Watch
Ezra Klein: Evan Bayh, Minor Deficit Hypocrite

You Don't Name an Arsonist to Co-Run the Fire Department

Not a good move by Barack Obama.

The Financial Times:

Obama to sign order for fiscal commission: President Barack Obama will sign an executive order on Thursday to establish a bipartisan commission charged with tackling the U.S. deficit, a senior administration official said on Tuesday. Obama will name Erskine Bowles, former chief of staff to President Bill Clinton, and former Republican Senator Alan Simpson to serve as co-chairs of the commission, the official said. ”On Thursday, President Obama will sign an executive order establishing the bipartisan National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform,” the official said. Bowles was White House chief of staff from 1996-1998.... Simpson was a senator from Wyoming from 1979-1997. ”During his career in the Senate, Simpson was often a strong voice for fiscal balance -- for example, voting in favor (of) the bipartisan 1990 deficit-reduction agreement.”

And voting for the big 1981 tax cut--the one where then budget director David Stockman said, of himself and his Republican colleagues, "none of us really understands what's going on with all these numbers"--and against the Clinton-era OBRA-93.

One out of three doesn't make you "often" a strong voice for fiscal balance. It means that you "occasionally" were a voice--and not a particularly strong one, IIRC--for fiscal balance.