Friday, March 9, 2012

What Has Bipartisanship Gotten Us?

In Matthew Tully's latest column, he complains about the lack of statesmanship and how "hyperpartisans" are destroying the distinguished senior Senator "from" Indiana.

And this set off something in me.

There's no shortage of journalists and media pundits who just drone on and on about how nothing gets done in Washington D.C., that the lack of bipartisanship hurts the legislative process, that no one wants to work across the isle, rinse, lather, repeat.

And I think their complaints are a load of bull.

Because look at what has happened, on the federal level, when they do work together.

The US PATRIOT ACT passed with overwhelming majorities in both the US House and Senate. In fact, the one Senator who voted against it in 2001, Democrat Russ Feingold, is no longer in the Senate.

The initial Afghanistan war was opposed by ONE House member and no Senators. That war has, since then, turned into a quagmire and anti-war, as a political movement, has all but been silenced in the administration of President Barack Obama. In fact, one of the war's harshest critics, Dennis Kucinich, recently lost a primary battle when his district was re-drawn with a fellow Democratic incumbent.

(It is interesting to note that, a year ago, Kucinich was being pushed to challenge President Obama in a primary from the left. But now, sites like DailyKOS and Democratic Underground have waged an all out war of words on Kucinich, criticizing his anti-war votes and making fun of his claim that he once saw an unidentified flying object)

TARP, No Child Left Behind, and the Iraq War Resolution, all of these pieces of legislation that have increased government bureaucracy and wasted billions of dollars, have all had support from both sides of the political isle. At best, we get major supporters of these actions, years later, come out against them. After the money has been spent, lives have been ruined, and the devastating affects have occurred.

So next time someone complains about the lack of bipartisanship, remind them what has happened when the two political establishments do work together.

Oh, and all of these things I named: Lugar voted for every single one of them. Someone should ask Richard Mourdock what his thoughts on these are.

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