NO LESS THAN SIX — Take Action to Make “Super Committee” 50% Women

sixIt is coming down to the wire and you voice needs to be heard! Republican Speaker John Boehner, Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi, Republican Senate Leader Mitch McConnell, and Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid are making their choices to select a 12-person bipartisan “Super Committee” to decide upon critical issues that came to the forefront when the debt-ceiling measure was passed.

The Women’s Media Center has a place where you can sign a letter to each of these lawmakers raising your voice that it is critical they appoint an equal number of women and men to this powerful body. Click HERE to send your letters now.

It is imperative that women are at the table and that women’s voices are heard in equal numbers to men’s voices. The “Super Committee” will be tasked with making critical judgments that will likely affect social programs that women disproportionately depend on – like Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. The positions, priorities, and perspectives of women need to be heard.”  The Women’s Media Center

Another ACTION opportunity is with the Women’s Campaign Forum and sign their petition for “no fewer than 6 women” chosen for this powerful role in America’s future. Click HERE to sign the petition.

Has what happened in Washington these last few weeks has made you angry to take action?? “No Excuses” Power Tool #7: Create a Movement shows us the time is now to act so the changes made in Washington are made with equal voices! DEMAND NO LESS THAN SIX!!

But do it right this minute–rumor has it that announcements could be made today.

Debt ceiling agreement a fair compromise?

Answering today’s question, I realized there are two distinctly different kinds of deals: those that produce new ideas and those that reduce all ideas to the lowest common denominator.

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Arena Asks:Facing the imminent prospect of default, the White House and Senate Republicans worked through Sunday to close a debt ceiling deal that gives President Barack Obama greater certainty in managing the Treasury’s borrowing needs while making a joint commitment to major deficit reduction without any explicit concessions by the GOP on new tax revenues. Is this a good deal? Which side came out ahead?

My Answer: Unlike Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal, which created an expansive new vision for America, this Obama–Boehner–Tea Party Deal lowers our sights as a nation. It’s a deal in the negative, narrow, horse trading sense of the word. It is a leadership fail all around.

This deal offers no new solutions to the great problems of our day. Who cares which side came out ahead? It’s clear who’s left behind: the American people.

Is it the Senate’s turn?

If ever there was a moment when women should take the lead without waiting to be asked by the men in leadership, this is it. My proposal for resolving the budget/debt ceiling impasse:

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Arena Asks: Washington wakes up this morning to a scary possibility: could the government actually default? If Boehner is unable to rally votes, the balance of power could shift back toward the Senate. Has the postponed vote given Democrats the leverage they need to convince Boehner to take a new course? Is it the Senate’s turn for a crack at the debt ceiling debacle?

My Answer:It’s time for all the moms in Congress to get together, sit the men down, propose a choice of two solutions like we do with children, and tell them they aren’t going out to play again until an agreement is reached.

I’m serious.

There were no women in the Gang of six. No women in the Gang of four. No women on the golf course with Obama when he tried that route. Nancy Pelosi pops up to deliver a statement from time to time but otherwise the women have been invisible. A World Bank study of parliaments globally concluded that those with greater numbers of women on them made better decisions and had a more productive decision making process. Clearly, it’s time for the U.S. to try a different way of thinking and making decisions.

Did President Obama make the case for a “fair” debt deal?

Politico TheArena logoArena Asks:  President Barack Obama called on the American people Monday night to send the message to Congress that it must approve a “balanced” approach to resolving the stalemate over the debt ceiling and deficit.

Will the president’s latest plea for a “fair” compromise spur lawmakers to a deal? Are these public appearances helping the president’s cause?

My Answer:  Personally, I’m sick and tired of Obama’s “balanced” approach. I think he must put forward a much stronger agenda to draw the debate closer to his position and engage people emotionally in his vision for the future if he wants to break the logjam.

As Boehner’s response showed, the Republicans see any plea for compromise and balance as blood in the water, an enticement to go after the wounded beast ever more viciously. Despicable is the only word for their intransigence. Their disdain for fairness tickles their base into ecstasy. Are they too full of themselves to see that they are eating the seed corn? Or are they simply too tethered to their extremist base to be able to budge? In either case, their foolish fealty to the Tea Party’s pledges brought us to this precipice.

The president has plenty of room to call the Republicans out on that. He did it well in his speech and should do lots more of it. But that’s simply not enough to stop the Kabuki theater that’s playing like a never ending video loop while the entire world collectively bites its nails.

Yes, the president has to keep talking to the American people. Yes, it’s important for him to remain calm and to explain over and over how the debt has become swollen from Republicans’ unwillingness to allocate the tax burden fairly while being all too willing to start financially draining wars and raise the debt ceiling whenever the sitting president was a Republican. (Check out Ezra Klein’s succinct graphs which illustrate this…) But what will really make the difference is for him to commit to a plan for moving forward with or without them.

The president does have the harder task than the Republicans who merely need to say “no.” But then, that’s why he was elected. I say, less balance and more boldness, please.

What Does Cantor’s Walk-out Mean for Boehner? (My Politico “Arena” Debut)

Today I posted my first commentary on’s Arena page. I’m delighted to have been asked to be a panelist in this rousing and sometimes rowdy political conversation on the hottest topics of the day. The folks at Politico send us questions and panelists can answer or not depending on interest or expertise. The questions are always stimulating, and on days when I respond I’ll be sure to share them with you here on Heartfeldt. But I hope you’ll join me in checking the Arena out every day because it always gets the political junkie juices going.

And it goes without saying that I want to hear from you–feel free to comment here at Heartfeldt on the Politico question of the day whether you think my response was right on or harebrained.

Today’s question: Congressional Republicans, led by House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (Va.), have pulled out of debt-reduction talks with the White House and are demanding that President Obama meet directly with GOP leaders to resolve an impasse over taxes. Republicans said negotiations led by Vice President Biden had ceased making headway.

At this point will House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) be able to make a deal with the White House and Senate Democrats without ticking off his base? And does Cantor’s walk-out give the GOP the upper hand in negotiations?

My response: The Cantor, Kyl, and crew hardline of “no new taxes” cuts the Republicans’ noses to spite their faces. They know full well there will have to be increased revenue as well as decreased spending. And they have no other solutions to offer. They want the Democrats to wear the “tax & spend” albatross, but Cantor has hung the biggest encumbrance around Boehner’s neck.

NPR had cuts of Cantor talking over the last few days and at first, he was all upbeat. By yesterday’s comments, he sounded completely beaten. I doubt that Cantor’s theatrics represent a permanent walking away from the very table the Tea Party wing of the Republican Party worked so hard to get a seat at, however. It’s just a dramatic way to buy time while trying to extract additional pounds of flesh from the American economy already tilted toward the wealthiest few.