Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A Small Thing

This is just niggling me, so I'm going to get it out there. I am reading Michael Barone's latest article.
Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus, who promised a health-care bill last month, still isn't delivering, and neither is the Health Committee's Christopher Dodd. They're both trying to nibble down cost estimates from the Congressional Budget Office, which has put the price tag at a trillion or more. But their latest ploys -- broad-based tax increases, transferring more of the Medicaid burden to the states -- sound like sputtering.

Meanwhile, Majority Leader Harry Reid says he's taken off the table one approach that has potential bipartisan support -- ending the tax preference for employer-provided insurance.
I don't know enough about the health-care proposals to know if this is a valid approach or not; I just am annoyed at the phrase "one approach that has potential bipartisan support." What that means in this context is that Reid has rejected the Republican plan.

The argument assumes that it's up to the Democrats to compromise and work with Republicans; Republicans are under no obligation to compromise with Democrats. If there is to be bi-partisan, it's up to the Democrats and the Democrats alone.

Bi-partisan on those grounds isn't bi-partisan. It's capitulation.

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