Adam Kinzinger is the Republican congressman from Illinois' 16th congressional district and he's angry! He's rip-roaring mad about the GOP's humiliating Trumpcare defeat and he knows just who to blame:
From my perspective, however, claiming that the party was in disarray is untrue. A vast majority of us were ready to vote yes, but one faction of the party made it impossible: the House Freedom Caucus.
Elected in 2010, Kinzinger has been a steady party man, meaning he's spent the last 7 years opposing pretty much anything and everything President Obama wanted to do, whipping the GOP base into a frenzy of rage and absolute hatred: Compromise is surrender, government is bad and Obamacare is destroying freedom.
At the same time, Republicans created gerrymandered districts so deeply conservative that their elected officials were the most extreme of the extremists: Absolute ideological purity at all costs. This was great when it came to poking a finger in Obama's eye but now that Republicans are in charge? Kinzinger can't quite seem to understand why the extreme fringe of his party won't play nice with the other kids.
Over the years, the caucus has repeatedly demanded more while refusing to compromise. In 2013, a group of conservatives who later became part of the Freedom Caucus won major concessions on the farm bill, and then still voted against it. In 2015, the caucus made demands for a free-trade bill that were clearly intended to kill the legislation. Their demands were not met and the bill passed without their support.
It’s what they do: They move the goal posts, and once that happens, they still refuse to play.
Stop me if you've heard this one before: During the 2009-2010 slog to pass Obamacare, the Democrats made concession after concession to Republicans. They spent over a year working with them to craft a bipartisan bill while Republicans spent every waking second wailing about how horrible it was. In the end, Republicans got 161 of the 210 amendments they demanded.
Not a single Republican in the House or Senate voted for it.
Ahem: "It’s what they do: They move the goal posts, and once that happens, they still refuse to play." Yeah, that sounds about right.
It's true that Kinzinger wasn't in the House yet but this was a pattern Republicans repeated over and over during Obama's entire administration. They'd furiously denounce the president for not working with them and when he tried, they would shamelessly bite his hand. Then they'd go right back to complaining about his lack of outreach. Listening to Kinzinger complain about the same tactics being used against his interests is the definition of rich.
Kinzinger tops off this textbook display of hypocrisy with a blood-boiling conclusion:
This bill was our chance to repeal Obamacare and alleviate the burdens of a failing insurance system. Perhaps we will one day agree on a measure to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. But for that to happen, our collective actions must be in the interests of the American people — and not just one group.
We'll skip the part about how Republicans are the ones deliberately sabotaging the ACA, trying to force a failure. The fact that the law is far more robust then anyone had anticipated must be infuriating to Republicans (Haha, assholes). Focus on that last part, though: "our collective actions must be in the interests of the American people — and not just one group."
Oh. My. God. That is total horseshit on an epic scale and Kinzinger knows it (or does he? It's hard to tell how brainwashed some Republicans are). Republicans haven't done a damn thing in the interests of the American people in decades unless you count corporations as people (which they do, more so than actual flesh and blood human beings).
When the Democrats controlled Congress and the White House, Republicans behaved exactly like the Freedom Caucus that so offends Kinzinger now. They did not want any collective actions in the interests of the American people; they wanted obstruction. Period. In the span of eight years, Republicans went from being a party that could govern (if not terribly well) to a party that only knew how to say "No." They filled their ranks with lunatics and now they're surprised the lunatics are running the asylum?
Cry me a river, Kinzinger. Maybe the next time the Democrats take control (in 2018), you'll think twice about moving the goalposts? Doubtful. Enjoy your whirlwind, you screaming hypocrite. I know I will.
There are 584 days left to the 2018 elections.
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