The plan is a little less than what the Democrats would have proposed if they weren't trying to pre-negotiate with the Republicans. (Seen as a sign of weakness by the Repubs, causing them to push harder.)
Further, the President says if the compromise the special panel comes back with doesn't contain serious tax increases for the rich, if they don't bear their share of the burden of deficit reduction, if it just falls on the backs of the poor and middle class, he will veto it.
Okay, it's hypocrisy to put #2 and #3 together. Let's be fair, call them both ugly or both DOA. But not one standard for one party and another for the other. That's part of what leads to the lopsided equilibrium we're at.
And what the pundits don't get, that the President all of a sudden seems to, is that there's a third party involved here. It's not just Democrats and Republicans -- there are taxpayers, voters, citizens -- people -- here. Whatever you want to call them, we can change what the parties do.
And get this, it doesn't have to wait until the election. If all of a sudden the voters realize this is their call, the Republicans will change. And that will happen long before next year's elections.