Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Bush's early-January call for "bipartisanship"

Dear Leader Bush expounds on his version of "bipartisanship" in an editorial the Wall Street Journal, What the Congress Can Do for America 01/03/07, from the start of this year.

Bush's examples of previous "bipartisanship" are telling. The No Child Left Behind Act, where the Democrats gave Bush the nationwide testing requirements he wanted in exchange for higher funding levels in future years; the tests went into effect, then Bush and the Congressional Republicans refused to provide the additional funding, so that a genuine compromise wound up to be a one-sided partisan Republican result. The PATRIOT Act, where a panicked Congress went along with pretty much every authoritarian-state measure Bush and John Ashcroft demanded. Tax "relief", in which taxes were slashed for the wealthiest Americans thus quickly squandering the surplus that had taken both the Bush 41 and Clinton administrations so many years to achieve. This is such empty rhetoric it would be overly generous to call it a bad joke.

Marc Sandalow and Zachary Coile reported at the same time,
Pelosi to strike fast on agenda San Francisco Chronicle 01/03/07, "Speaker-to-be Nancy Pelosi is choosing accomplishment over accommodation".

Sounds good to me. And she's followed up on that successfully, so far. But most of Bush's article is taken up reporting on Republican whining that the Democrats are planning to run the House as though they won the election in November. The nerve of those uncivil Democrats!

If the Dems get effective ethics rules and processes functioning, and put limits on excessive lobbying practices, that will be a genuinely "bipartisan" benefit, whether or not the Reps support those changes or not. For the rest of the Republican whining, well, gosh, they have my sympathy. Maybe they should show their "bipartisan" goodwill by shutting up about it. That would be a "civil" gesture, huh?

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