TPMDC Sunday Roundup

Reid: ‘Wait And See’ On Arming Libyan Rebels
Appearing on Face The Nation, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) said that the United States should hold off on arming the Libyan rebels for now. “I spoke to the president yesterday about this, President Obama, and I think at this stage we really don’t know who the leaders of this rebel group is,” said Reid. He also added: “We have others, as [Defense] Secretary Gates has said, that can do it more easily than we can. So I think at this stage let’s just wait and see.”

Graham: ‘I’m Ready To Look At Arming Them’
Appearing on Face The Nation, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) was more positive on arming the Libyan rebels. “I’m ready to look at arming them to help themselves,” said Graham. “We need American air power back into the site. We need to take the fight to Tripoli. Go after his inner circle. That’s the way to end this war decisively and quickly. The strategy we have is going to lead to a stalemate. It needs to change. Help the rebels, take the fight to Tripoli. Get this thing over with. Qaddafi must go.”Jones: Coalition Can’t Leave Libya Until Qaddafi Is Gone
Appearing on State of the Union, former National Security Adviser Jim Jones said that the international coalition in Libya cannot leave the country until dictator Muammar Qaddafi is out of office. “The problem is that while everybody wants to see Qaddafi leave, either be removed or leave on his own, that end state is not yet clear,” said Jones, who left the administration this past October. “Unfortunately most people want perfect clarity in a situation where clarity doesn’t really exist yet.”

Schumer Stands By Calling Tea Parties ‘Extreme’ In Hot Microphone Moment
Appearing on This Week, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) stood by his remarks, overheard by reporters on a conference call before it was officially set to begin, describing how the Democratic caucus had instructed him to refer to the Tea Party movement as “extreme.” “I have no problem with reporters hearing that,” said Schumer. Regarding the description of Tea Partiers as “extreme,” Schumer said: “I said a few hours before [the call] on the floor of the Senate. I’ve said it on this show. The Tea Party is the group standing in the way. They are extreme.”

Sessions: ‘Millions Of Americans Participate In The Tea Parties’
Also appearing on This Week, Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) countered Schumer. “Millions of Americans participate in the tea parties, tens of millions of Americans support and believe what they’re saying, and they are right, fundamentally,” said Sessions. He also added: “This Democratic leadership proposes nothing but to attack the people who are trying to get this country on the right course.”

Durbin Defends Schumer: ‘We Talk About How To Get A Message Through To The American People’
Appearing on Meet The Press, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) defended Schumer. “Well, I think some of the spending cuts they’re suggesting go way, way too far,” said Durbin. “Chuck Schumer, I think, is an indication of what happens in both political parties, in both caucuses, House and Senate. We talk about how to get a message through to the American people, as tough as it is in this day and age. And, and Chuck was instructing folks as to what he felt the best way was to deliver that message. But here’s what it comes down to. We cannot go so far in our spending cuts at this moment as to jeopardize this recovery.”

Ryan: ‘Yes, We Will Be Giving Our Political Adversaries Things To Use Against Us’
Appearing on Fox News Sunday, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) said that the upcoming Republican budget plan would cut $4 trillion over the next decade, which would include changes to how Medicare and Medicaid work — which he acknowledged could create political risks. “They are going to demagogue us, and — and it’s that demagoguery that has always prevented political leaders in the past from actually trying to fix the problem,” said Ryan. “We can’t keep kicking this can down the road. The president has punted. We’re not going to follow suit. And, yes, we will be giving our political adversaries things to use against us in the next election, and shame on them if they do that.”