Good riddance to bad rubbish, Sen. Graham

Oh I don’t mean you, Lindsey — I mean your execrable bill to trash Obamacare and make healthcare in America considerably less accessible, which the Senate declined to vote on today.

Remember, I generally approve of your job performance. I’ll probably be applauding something you say and do again soon — but not until, say, next week, when the deadline for you to be able to cram this thing through with 50 votes and no deliberation is safely behind us.

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Until that line is crossed, I won’t breathe easy for the nation. I don’t pronounce things dead until they’re buried. And once we get to where you’d need 60 votes to pass it, it’s buried.

Watching you on this issue has not been pleasant. Of course, trying to rush through such an awful proposal, dressing it up in language about the virtues of federalism, was bad. Really bad. But you managed to make it worse by acting like you were all excited that Donald Trump, of all people, was supporting what you were doing.

Yeah, I get it. You get weary of that bunch the GOP euphemistically calls its “base” hating on you all the time. You’d like to seek your party’s nomination just once without an army of snake-flaggers coming out of the woodwork to oppose you. It’s not fun getting booed at party gatherings. And you’re right to dismiss liberals who love you only when they think you’re acting like one of them. I get it. You’re an actual conservative Republican — conservative in a sense that doesn’t insult the English language — and you’d like others to respect that.

But while I’m sure it would be peachy to be popular among your own for once, it’s not worth taking medical coverage from millions of Americans. Not to them, certainly. And it shouldn’t be to you, either.

8 thoughts on “Good riddance to bad rubbish, Sen. Graham

  1. Mark Stewart

    I see this a a signal of the Republican party demise. It is unsustainable with people like Roy Moore running for national office. The GOP is running in fear of the “base”, which is really the cluster of wing nuts, and so was Lindsey pushing this garbage.

    But the GOP has made its bed through Gerrymandering and its refusal these last 8 years to tell these nuts to go pound sand. Instead, they made a bargain with the devil and egged them on.

    The solution here, now, for the country and for the party is to embrace legislation to restrict gerrymandering. It’s time for the “conservatives’ of the party to reach across the aisles and reform our electoral process through Congressional action. Restoring a balance of power is the only way to return to the middle. If not, what will happen is the wing nuts will win the battle – and lose the “war” as the moderates will drift to the Democrats across the country.

    I would rather see two strong parties. The GOP is not that now. It is in parasitic conflict within itself. It needs to turn on these impulses, not embrace them.

    1. Doug Ross

      “I see this a a signal of the Republican party demise.”

      Define “demise”. Does it mean the country will have 100% Democrat governors and control of state legislatures, Congress, and the White House?

      Or does it mean we’ll go through just another swing of the pendulum like this country has had since the beginning? 55-60% one way and then back again within a decade.

      It would be better to see a complete demise of the two party system.

      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        “It would be better to see a complete demise of the two party system.”

        I’m glad to be able to agree with Doug on something. It’s a nice start to the day.

        Of all that partisan rant of Bud’s, the one that had me shaking my head the most was his sad delusion that the useless Democrats offer our only hope. The Democrats offer nothing but more of this mindless carping back and forth…

  2. bud

    I dunno Mark, I think the demise of the Republican party is a bit premature. What I see happening is a sort of coalition of extremism. It’s always been that way but the focus is now on a different faction. Here are the four major factions in the GOP:

    The Plutocrats. For years this was the dominant faction that drove Republican politics. A key player in this faction was Mitt Romney. Sometimes referred to as Country Club Republicans these wealthy folks were exclusively interested in policies that favored the wealthy. To win elections they had to fool working class people with talk about family values that could sell to the gullible masses. Somehow they managed to sell people on the virtue of eliminating the estate tax as a way of benefiting the working class. They also sold wars as a way of increasing profits for the military industry and win over some votes from the second GOP faction ….

    The Neocons. This group only cares about war and spending on unnecessary military crap. Our very own Lindsey Graham along with his buddy John McCain are classic neocons. These people are afraid of their own shadow and see threats around every corner and under every bed. They really don’t care about issues like healthcare and taxes but like the Plutocrats they feel compelled to pay lip service to these issues as a way of winning support and hence getting into more wars. The country seems to have caught on to their war mongering mania. They still hold some sway behind the scenes as evidenced by our recent misguided push to increase troop levels in Afghanistan. But by and large the public’s aversion to military incursions has served to check the worst instincts of this odious faction.

    The Theocrats. This ultra orthodox so call evangelical faction is interested exclusively in making America a ‘Christian’ nation. But only their brand of Christianity is welcome. The rise of Roy Moore suggests this group is on the rise. They won’t be happy until every child prays in school, homosexuality is criminalized and non-Christian religions are outlawed. The Theocrats are experts at misinterpreting bible verses for their own intolerant goals. The Theocrats are really just charlatans who prey on the gullible with platitudes about serving the lord when in fact what they want is for people to send them money. For decades this faction allied itself with the lies peddled by the Plutocrats but recently they’ve found a new messiah, Donald Trump. Which brings us to the fourth GOP faction ….

    The Kleptocrats. Donald Trump is the embodiment of the Kleptocratic world view. He has managed to fool so many people into believing he is on their side when in fact he’s only on his own side. The Kleptocrats will say anything or do anything to win or steal elections in order to feather their own personal nests. With voter suppression, gerrymandering, the right wing alternative facts media and the electoral college all on their side they only have to convince a minority of voters to buy their diabolical sales pitch. The real beneficiary of the the Kleptocracy is a tiny cadre of wealthy individuals who shamelessly build their empire with the aid of Russian oligarchs. The Kleptocrats can only succeed with the aid of gullibility and ignorance. Both of which seem to be in abundance within the Republican umbrella.

    Sadly the only thing that stands in the way of this monstrous coalition are the brave, yet hapless liberal warriors of the Democratic Party and their allies. Even though their hearts are in the right place the Democrats really are a pretty incompetent group of bunglers. Will they be able to save us? We can only hope.

  3. Chuckie

    A synonym for ”federalism“ is ”states‘ rights/state sovereignty.“ And as a southerner with knowledge of the south’s political past (and an awareness of its current policy tastes), the term will ALWAYS ring sour in my ears and raise suspicion about the real, underlying motivations any time a southern politician uses it.

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Here’s the irony in it: Southerners generally weren’t Federalists. They tended to be Democratic-Republicans.

      But “federalist” may be the most elastic word in the political lexicon. It’s used legitimately to refer to a system that has some measure of sovereignty for the states as well as the national government. It’s also used (as with the political party) to designate those who preferred a stronger central government.

      Both make a kind of sense because it’s a system of shared authority between two levels. But some choose to emphasize the power of one, and some of the other.

      When people use it, you have to interpret according to the context…


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