Ezra Klein in The Washington Post on what we learned from the fiscal cliff Now that lawmakers have finally come to an agreement on how to deal with the expiring Bush-era tax cuts, what can be drawn from this contentious, long drawn-out legislativ process? One of the lessons Ezra Klein learned was that Republicans aren't as hostile to negotiating as they sometimes seem. "The Republicans aren’t quite as crazy as they’d like the Democrats to believe," Klein writes. "They were scared to take the country over the fiscal cliff. They’re going to be terrified to force the country into default, as the economic consequences would be calamitous."
Maureen Dowd in The New York Times on Michael Bennet Only eight senators voted against the deal to avert the fiscal cliff. Michael Bennet, a Democratic senator from Colorado, was one of them. He believed the deal didn't adequately adress deficit reduction, saying, "Going over the cliff is a lousy choice and continuing to ignore the fiscal realities that we face is a lousy choice." In her column about why Bennet chose to oppose the consensus, Maureen Dowd writes, "Voting to let the country fall off the cliff was an audacious, even precocious, move by the Democratic golden boy and presidential pet—one that, oddly, put him on the side of Marco Rubio and Rand Paul rather than Obama and Joe Biden." (Standard disclosure: Sen. Bennet is the brother of James Bennet, editor in chief of The Atlantic.)