As the budget negotiations drag on, Republicans are forming up into a solid block, which is nice to see for a change. Even better, some of the wilder voices are getting squeezed out as our resolve strengthens. Jim DeMint is out. He’s off to run the hyper-conservative Heritage foundation. It’s a good job, definitely much better than getting sidelined in the senate. The writing is on the wall and it looks like Jim can read.
At last we may be seeing a rise of centrist Republicans again. You know, the ones who are more likely to deal than pout. At least that’s what John Boehner is hoping, I’m sure he's weary of hammering out a deal for weeks on end, only to find he’s the only one who is willing to go along. Of course, there are still some in Congress firmly convinced that they don’t have to compromise because somehow, secretly, “everyone” is really on their side.
The Tea party in Florida is still fighting the Obamacare battle, and hotly abusing Governor Rick Scott over his softening on the program. That party claims the unconstitutionality of the law enables Florida to ignore it, effectively nullifying the mandates they don’t like. Apparently, they haven’t heard of the Supreme Court’s ruling and are determined to keep going down the path forged by the other 26 attempts to repeal the law. This isn’t their only cause, on their website they are also calling for a declaration of war on Libya. Ok guys, you get to go first. Have fun! Apparently, they like their tinfoil hats really tight in Florida.
Several of the more strident Tea Party congressmen found themselves without a committee seat when the music stopped this week. Both the Congressional Finance Committee and the Budget Committee lost some “noise” in favor of cooler heads. It looks like Boehner is doing a little house cleaning. It may or may not have something to do with a certain pledge they refuse to back off or it may just be that it takes sense to govern, not just immutable principles. Now if we could get some of the global warming deniers and anti-evolution advocates off the science committee, we'd really be making progress. Could we start with the Chairman?
Of course not all the craziness has faded just yet, ratification of the UN disabilities treaty failed this week. The reasons stated included that it violated US sovereignty to sign a treaty based on the Americans with Disabilities Act. Although widely supported by Republican luminaries such as John McCain and Bob Dole as well as disabled rights advocate groups and veterans groups, the treaty still only managed to garner eight Republican votes. Really, Only eight? Did any one read the treaty, even just the title? Some other "serious" concerns were that guaranteeing the disabled rights to reproductive health care would clearly lead to abortions and treacherous UN meddling in homeschooling. What’s the UN going to do, send us a mean note? The treaty has no force in US courts. Still, they are taking over the world, you know. Better watch out!
The tide is against us and it’s time to start swimming boys and girls, not only did we lose the election (Even Ann Coulter admits it - on Fox news no less), unemployment is down again (7.7%) and the President’s approval ratings are up (53%). Oh, we have him on the ropes now, we have him right where he wants us. Is it time to double down on dumb, or start pulling in the same direction as everyone else? After all, most of us want to get the country back on a sound fiscal track, as long as we come up with a serious plan we’re good to go. Maybe it is time to put politics aside, eat a little crow and get on with the show. Wouldn’t it be nice to start governing again?