Monday, February 22, 2010

What Does Bipartisan Mean?

I sincerely think someone needs to get President Obama a dictionary. He keeps paying lip service to a bipartisan healthcare bill, but either he doesn't know what the word means, or he's full of...well, you can guess what he's full of. Bipartisan's true meaning is "marked by or involving cooperation, agreement, and compromise between two major political parties." In that spirit, for almost a year Obama and the House and Senate leaders have ignored the Republican solutions and have ignored the will of the people. It has cost them, to date, two govermorships, a House seat, a Senate seat (held for over 30 years by a Democrat in the bluest state no less!), a defection from Dem to Republican in the House, and multiple retirements in both the House and Senate, leaving dozens of seats in jeopardy of going Republican in 2010.

Obama seemed to get the gravity of the situation by inviting the Republicans to a summit on the 25th of this month to discuss health care. We've been hearing for weeks - since Scott Brown's election - that Obama CAN save his presidency IF he moves to the right, really works with the House and Senate Republicans, really listens to what the ALL the people say, not just what his advisors and the people at the SEIU and MoveOn.Org have to say. And it seemed, for a few brief moments, like he was going to do that.

But then either his puppet masters or his ego took over again, and he has gone back to the "I know better than you what's best for you" style of politics. He announced that he is fully hoping for a bi-partisan solution to health care, and to prove it, until the Republicans come around, he will keep pushing forward with the existing legislation. This is where I think he may not understand the meaning of the word bipartisan, It does NOT mean that the Republicans need to agree with the Democrats. It doesn't mean that the existing legislation should be the starting point. It means getting out a fresh sheet of paper and starting over. 

It doesn't stop at healthcare.  To prove he's bipartisan, he's offered up money for nuclear power plants - IF the Republicans pass cap & trade legislation.  In other words, he's trying to bribe them to get what he wants.  He'll give us nuclear power, we just have to compromise our values - and our economy - to get it. 

Back to his bipartisan approach to healthcare, he's going to be announcing his own version of the health care plan today, THREE DAYS in advance of the summit. This plan is expected to be purely budgetary, so they can pass it through reconciliation with only 51 votes in teh Senate, and then make up whatever they want on the back end once they have the money to pay for it.  No one should be fooled, he has no intention of taking the wishes of the Republicans into consideration. He just doesn't get it!

If you doubt that this administration thinks that we're all a bunch of simpletons, his mouthpiece, Nancy Pelosi, said this: "We (Liberal Democrats) will go through the gate. If the gate is closed, we will go over the fence. If the fence is too high, we will pole vault in. If that doesn't work, we will parachute in. But we are going to get health care reform passed for the American people for their own (good)."

Did you get that? It's for our own good that healthcare be put in the hands of the government, which can't get the Cash For Clunkers dealers paid on time, which can't get unemployment checks paid on time, which causes the private sector to shrink by twenty cents for every dollar it spends, and which will create over 100 NEW AGENCIES with this legislation. If you get cancer and need a timely course of treatment, is this who you would turn to?

Please, keep writing and calling your elected officials. Keep up the pressure. Let's show them the way, or show them the door.

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