09 February, 2009

Happy Hour Discurso

Today's opining on the public discourse.

The stimulus bill just cleared a hurdle of Con obstruction:
The Senate voted 61-36 just moments ago to pass a cloture motion on the economy recovery package, thus ending debate on the bill and moving to a vote on final passage. The motion received just one more than the 60 votes needed. Three Republicans — Sens. Susan Collins (ME), Olympia Snowe (ME), and Arlen Specter (PA) — voted with the Democrats.
Three Cons for, oodles against. And, of course, the bill had absolutely no Con support in the House at all.

They may just want to rethink this obstructionist bullshit if they want even a microscopic chance to survive the next election cycle:

A new Gallup poll asked respondents about the government's efforts to pass a stimulus package. President Obama enjoys strong support; a plurality approve of congressional Democrats, while 58% disapprove of the way in which congressional Republicans have handled the issue.

The same poll found that they have more confidence now in the Obama administration's ability to improve the economy than before the president took office, while a majority of poll respondents (including a majority of independents) believe it is "critically important" that policymakers pass a stimulus package. Gallup's analysis of the results added, "President Obama would appear to have the upper hand in the current focus on Congress' efforts to pass a major economic stimulus bill."

Outlier? Not so much:

As it turns out, a new CNN poll found similar results.

Seventy-six percent of those quesioned [sic] in a CNN/Opinion Research Corporation survey released Monday give President Obama a thumbs-up when it comes to the way he's performing his duties, with 23 percent disapproving of the way Obama's handling his job as president.

The stimulus package isn't as popular as the president, but the poll found 54% support the bill -- while self-identified Dems and independents back the measure, the overall number is dragged down by Republicans -- and a combined 64% believe the legislation will help the economy.

So. The Cons just spent weeks trying to stonewall the stimulus. They dominated the airwaves, threw all sorts of mud, and in the end, their popularity's tanking and the stimulus will pass anyway. The numbers show that people opposed to the stimulus will probably find that opposition coming back to haunt them. Yet they're all sorts of pleased with themselves:
It seems that losing the White House and Congress is good for the GOP.

Three months after their Election Day drubbing, Republican leaders see glimmers of rebirth in the party's liberation from an unpopular president, its selection of its first African American chairman and, most of all, its stand against a stimulus package that they are increasingly confident will provide little economic jolt but will pay off politically for those who oppose it.

"We're so far ahead of where we thought we'd be at this time," said Rep. Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.), one of several younger congressmen seeking to lead the party's renewal.

You guys are doing great, Paul! Just listen to your colleagues.

We weren’t very happy with the results of the election, and on through the inaugural, but I guarantee you, I’ve never seen the spirit of Republicans as high as it was at the GOP retreat,” Arizona Rep. John Shadegg told me, referring to the House Republican getaway a week ago at the Homestead resort in Hot Springs, Va.

It would be an understatement to say GOP lawmakers were pumped after unanimously opposing the stimulus bill in the House...“When we held our guys together, that had people extremely excited,” Shadegg said.

“I’m much happier,” Sen. Jim DeMint told me between votes on the stimulus.

How nice.

It should be entertaining to go back and ask Sen. DeMint et al how happy they are after their next ass-kicking at the polls. You know who they remind me of? My ex-dog, who used to go "play" with the cats. She'd come back bleeding profusely from a shredded nose, yet she seemed so happy that everybody was getting along and things were going so very well.

They're as stupid as that dog. And that's saying something.

You know what? I take that back. My dog was smarter - at least she'd be concerned if her staunch allies started wavering in their support:

When it comes to economic issues, the Republican Party may not get much support from economists, unions, or voters in general, but the GOP can usually count on the business community.

But when it comes to the stimulus debate, that's not exactly the case.

The administration is betting on at least three Republican moderates to help see it through, and the traditionally Republican-leaning business lobby is beginning to exert itself more as well.

In announcing his support Friday night, Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) pointedly read from a Chamber of Commerce endorsement. The National Association of Manufacturers has also weighed in, telling Republicans that votes on the bill "including potential procedural motions" may be considered for designation as key votes in NAM's scoring of their legislative record.

As DougJ aptly explained, "I've always thought ... that some day the Republican party would become so insane that it would begin to frighten big business. That day may have arrived."

They lose business, they're sunk. And yet they don't seem to care. Anyone else get the sense of a party of lemmings?

As long as they don't end up taking us over the cliff with them, I'll be more than happy to watch them take the plunge.

1 comment:

Mike at The Big Stick said...

They may just want to rethink this obstructionist bullshit if they want even a microscopic chance to survive the next election cycle.

That is perhaps the most disingenuous statement I have heard in some time.

So let's say these 'cons' took your advice and this bill passed 100-0. Are you telling me you wouldn't still be arguing that they should be run out of office when their terms expired? Let's not kid ourselves. In 2010 or 2012, if the economy is back on track, you will say that it's evidence that liberal policies work and we need more liberals in office. regardless of how these politicians voted on the stimulus, if there is an (R) next to their name, you will want them out. You've already promised to go after Blue Dog Democrats. Do you really expect anyone to believe a republican could be safe?

The GOP's fortunes will go with the economy, just like those of the Democrats. If it improves, Dems will do well in the next elections. If it is still in the toilet, the GOP will win seats. It's really that simple and nothing the GOp does now will change that scenario.

You might recall that certain Democrats, like our new Sec. of State, supported the Iraq invasion. Did it hurt her? No. Others did not support it. Did it hurt them? No.

It will be exactly the same with the stimulus.