So much failure, so little time....
Groundhog Day Washington, DC Style
The federal government has reopened and that is a good thing but as Congress has found a way to fund it for a mere 90 days, the champagne shouldn’t be broken out just yet. With Heritage Action, Sean Hannity, Sarah Palin and others still on the war path to defund President Obama’s signature piece of legislation, there is plenty of reason to believe the country will be right back where it was this week in January.
Senator Ted Cruz (R-TX) returns to the list this week with multiple failures.
Cruz thinks he came out of the shutdown looking pretty good and, for his Tea Party supporters, he did. At the beginning of the week a poll of Republicans showed his numbers among Tea Party Republicans were 56 percent favorable and three percent unfavorable. For a man looking to run for president on a Tea Party platform, that’s not bad.
The rest of the world doesn’t share this view. In fact, the same poll that found Cruz’s support among Tea Partiers to be so high found other Republicans are not so fond of him. His numbers with the rest of the GOP: 13 percent favorable, 23 percent unfavorable. He and Sarah Palin attended a veteran protest of the closing of the World War II memorial (which wasn’t actually closed to veterans, the Park Police were instructed to let them in under the auspices of exercising their First Amendment rights) and they played that up as much as possible. The only problem was that while one local Tea Party supporter invited the duo, the main organization that planned the event did not and objected to them using it as a prop in their fight against the Affordable Care Act (ACA or “Obamacare”). Read about that here.
Then there is the way Cruz handled his “secret meeting” with House Republicans. He held it at the Capitol Hill restaurant, Tortilla Coast, which sits across the street from the House Office Buildings. There are only two restaurants that close, this one and Bullfeathers next door. The only people in there most of the time are Members of Congress and their staffs. Therefore, no one was surprised that House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy was eating there at the same time and saw the strategy session. Maybe Cruz wanted to be seen. Maybe he doesn’t care. Either way, it was stupid.
As for Cruz’s stated goal of defunding Obamacare, he couldn’t have done more to make the law more popular if that had been his goal. The rollout has been a disaster so far but no one was paying attention because the Cruz government shutdown, which he tried and again failed to blame on President Obama, was all anyone could talk about.
To sum up, Cruz shut down the government, caused the GOP poll numbers to drop to their lowest level since the poll was started, made the law he hates more popular and pissed off veterans. He also will not rule out shutting the government down again to protest Obamacare. Read more here.
The House Republican Caucus: After rejecting the Senate plan initially, they rejected every plan Speaker John Boehner presented them and after that 144 of them still voted against the Senate compromise that reopened the government and raised the debt ceiling meaning it passed because of Democratic support. This also means it could have passed weeks ago without forcing the shutdown and making us look like idiots to the rest of the planet. Stay classy, House GOP. Read the final vote tally here.
Michele Bachmann: Her special brand of crazy will be missed by satire writers when she retires at the end of her term. This week, she said,“President Obama can’t wait to get Americans addicted to the crack cocaine of dependency on more government health care.” Read about that here.
Ted Yoho: He argued this week against giving furloughed workers back pay, said the debt ceiling crisis would stabilize world markets and thinks Obamacare is “racist” against white people. Read more here.
Gretchen Carlson reported on her new show, The Real Story, that Congressman Bill Young (R-FL) had died when he had not. Apparently, the former Fox & Friends anchor still relies on fact checkers from her former show and remains a black hole of journalism and humanity.
Not to be outdone by Carlson, Fox & Friends continues to be the failure it always was. When the craziness on Capitol Hill seemed as if it could not get any crazier, it did on Wednesday night when a stenographer started yelling about Freemasons and Jesus and was escorted off the House floor. To most people, this was a woman having some sort of mental breakdown but to the hosts of the morning show, she was being unfairly targeted for her religious beliefs. There can be little doubt how they would have responded to the same story had the woman been screaming about Allah.
Sarah Palin v. Megyn Kelly: The former governor went on Kelly’s new show and the result was hilarious. Poor Megyn Kelly:
Not only did they lose to the evil Cowboys last week (this writer is a die hard 49er fan, by the way) but the calls to change the name of the team are only growing louder. Conservative columnist Charles Krauthammer wrote a piece in the Washington Post calling for the name to be changed, saying: “Why? Simple decency. I wouldn’t want to use a word that defines a people — living or dead, offended or not — in a most demeaning way. It’s a question not of who or how many had their feelings hurt, but of whether you want to associate yourself with a word that, for whatever historical reason having nothing to do with you, carries inherently derogatory connotations.” According to WTOP, the Richmond Free Press will stop using it because they think it is racist. Owner, Dan Snyder has called the name “a badge of honor” and repeatedly resisted calls to change the name. Time will tell if he comes to his senses.