Tuesday, May 03, 2005

A Helpful Service

Bill Murchinson, in his latest article, takes the Democratic Party to task for obstructionism. Specifically he lists four ways in which the democrats have obstructed President Bush and says that obstructionism is the motive. "Capitol Hill Democrats protest that each of these issues is a matter of principle. No doubt they are right: The principle is that George W. Bush gets nothing out of this session of Congress." Unfortunately Murchinson's presentation of these four areas could be a bit clearer. Let's look this section over.
How much don't they like it? So much that they:

1) have stalled and possibly killed Social Security reform for the foreseeable future,
First of all, how have they stalled and possibly killed Social Security reform? Is this some kind of back ally deal or smoke filled room scandal? Nope. They just made a stronger case than the President. A strong enough case that the President cannot even count on all congressional Republicans to support his plan. What's so sinister about that?

Secondly President Bush's plan is a reform in the same way that cyanide is a medicine.
2) decided the president doesn't get to name the judges he wants to name,
That should read "decided that the President only gets to name 95.8% of the judges he wants to name." And we may be coming back to this issue later on today, as Salon has a review of the career of Priscilla Owens (one of the judges being blocked).
3) decided the president doesn't get to name the United Nations envoy he wants to name
Well, here again, all the Democrats are doing is asking questions. And several democrats have stated they will vote to confirm.
4) blocked a number of other cabinet appointments for purposes it is hard to characterize as other than partisan
This seems to descend into the realm of the petty. Does Mr. Murchinson really expect the Democrats in congress to just rubberstamp everything that President Bush wants to do?

President Bush has gotten his tax cuts, he's gotten his war with Iraq, he's gotten 95% of his judges passed, he's gotten his bankruptcy bill, he's gotten "No Child Left Behind," and how he's whining (and Mr. Murchinson is whining on his behalf) because he can't convince people to support his Social Security Plan and he can't get those last 10 judges through congress without overturning the filibuster tradition.

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