Greg Prince's Blog

Musings and pontifications from a reality based progressive

Archive for the ‘Congress’ Category

Was John Adams’ health care mandate unconstitutional?

Posted by Greg on January 21, 2011

Was John Adams’ health care mandate unconstitutional?.

Posted in Congress, Culture War, Health Care | 15 Comments »

Harry Reid stands strong on Social Security

Posted by Greg on January 11, 2011

Harry Reid stands strong on Social Security.

Posted in Congress, Economics, Obama Administration, Politics in General | Leave a Comment »

Gearing for a delusional 2012

Posted by Greg on January 6, 2011

Delusions of adequacy, no other way to explain it.

With the newly sworn Congress barely in session we are well into the horserace leading up to the 2012 presidential election.  Chronologically we’re entering the third year or “autumn” of the cycle and appropriately the nuts are starting to fall from the trees.

Thus far the Obama administration has governed differently than candidate Obama campaigned, frustrating progressives and liberals and compromising away hoped for policy gains.  Given both disappointment among the base and the slow pace of economic recovery, especially unemployment, you’d think the President would be particularly vulnerable to a primary opponent.  Certainly, some on the left would welcome the prospect of a Democratic primary, but at this point it doesn’t seem likely.

The water is a bit muddied by the successful lame duck session which demonstrated  that once in a rare while Democrats can accomplish something, yet generates a sense of frustration and wondering where that can-do competence has been the previous two years.

Frustrations notwithstanding, a credible primary challenge on the left seems increasingly unlikely.  That leaves the GOP side of the aisle where the excitement is to be found.

Starting with a blast from the insufficiently distant past, CNN reports that former Senator Frothy, Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, is making preparations for a 2012 White House run.

A source close to the former senator from Pennsylvania confirms to CNN that later Wednesday Santorum will announced [sic] that he’s bringing on board one of the top GOP political strategists in New Hampshire, a state that plays a crucial role in the race for the White House. Santorum will also next week make another visit to the state, which traditionally holds in nation’s first primary in the presidential calendar.

Haven’t we suffered enough?  It’s hard to imagine a world in which a Santorum candidacy would be taken seriously, but then I look at the current House of Representatives and wonder if he isn’t an ideal stealth candidate.  He’s got the social conservative bonafides Multiple Choice Mitt lacks.  He was a wingnut before teabagging asshattery was cool and the public at large doesn’t have the longest of memories.

But things could be even more entertaining.  Gazing northward from my comfortable home in Minnesota’s Fourth Congressional District, we find the sixth district, a rather “special” place represented by the always entertaining (usually not deliberately so) Michele Bachmann.

Michele Bachmann is always unpredictable – her logic isn’t like other people’s logic.  There was speculation she would consider taking on Minnesota’s senior senator Amy Klobuchar who stands for reelection in 2012.  It turns out Bachmann’s ambitions may be a bit more grand in scale:

MinnPost has learned that Bachmann loyalists have already begun holding conversations with activists and officials in key early caucus and primary states and will begin travelling to those states in the coming weeks and months. Internal conversations have already begun about who might leave her Washington and district offices to staff a potential bid. And Bachmann told reporters she will likely visit additional early voting states in the upcoming months.

I have to admit this is a bit mind numbing.  Bachmann’s ability to raise vast sums of money, mostly from out of state, was demonstrated in the 2010 election but that’s not the same thing as a national draw for votes.  Bachmann’s idiocy is a known quantity in the Sixth and they vote for her anyway.  It’s probably a mistake to think Americans nationwide, even a majority of GOP voters, are equally forgiving.

There is yet some amusement value to be had here.  The GOP leadership created the monster.  As Hot Air observes, “A ‘Palin vs. Bachmann’ storyline in the primaries would be the political event of a lifetime.”  Yeah, it would.  The GOP leadership has fed the teabagging beast for electoral advantage, praying all the while they could keep it under control.  But the beast doesn’t want to be controlled.

When Bachmann stopped having her way with GOP leadership in the Minnesota Senate, she launched her quixotic bid for Congress in the Sixth.  Bachmann aspires to leadership, having recently formed the Tea Party Caucus in the House of Representatives and campaigned actively for far right candidates in the 2010 season. Not only were her attempts to secure a leadership position within the House GOP were solidly rebuffed, she was denied a desired seat on the Ways and Means Committee, to be placed on the Intelligence Committee.  Now in principle the Intelligence Committee is prestigious, but it’s also a committee that by nature of its work is often out of the limelight – something troublesome for Bachmann who follows TV cameras like a moth to flame.

Rep. Keith Ellison had this to say about Michele Bachmann’s possible candidacy:

I think it would be great for her to run for president. I think she has strongly-held views which she should test on the whole of the United States – see how her views are received across the country, not just in the comfort of the 6th District.

It certainly could be educational:

I think her views would not match up with the mainstream of American society, but I do encourage her to try it, I think it would be a very good thing for her to get out there  – and maybe she should resign from office now so she can devote all her time to her presidential run.

Educational indeed, this has potential for some great political theater.  Please Michele….please GOP.

Posted in Congress, Election 2012 | Leave a Comment »

Republicans try yet another secret meeting with Wall Street

Posted by Greg on April 23, 2010

You’d think they’d learn their lesson by now.  Is it any reason some GOPers are defecting to the side of light on finance reform?  The folks back home aren’t going to be happy…

The Washington Monthly.

Posted in Congress, Economics | Leave a Comment »

In honor of the GOP on the occasion of health care reform’s first step

Posted by Greg on March 21, 2010

Posted in Congress, Obama Administration, The Right | Leave a Comment »

Some Cautious Optimism on Health Care Whip Count

Posted by Greg on March 14, 2010

Some Cautious Optimism on Health Care Whip Count.

The good guys are favored to win, but it’s not a done deal yet…

Posted in Congress, Health Care | Leave a Comment »

Still a weenie

Posted by Greg on March 8, 2010

The more wisened readers here may remember many years ago, during the Anita Hill/Clarence Thomas debacle, Orrin Hatch was one of the GOPers assigned to take down Hill.  I remember driving in downtown Salt Lake City that fall and passing by a bunch of women protesting Orrin’s involvement in the hearings.  Several of them held large signs saying, “Honk if you think Orrin’s a weenie!” 

Naturally, I laid on the horn in rapid staccato – as my Republican leaning wife punched my arm.

Well, Hatch is still in DC.

And he’s still a weenie.

Posted in Congress, Utah | Leave a Comment »

All About Joe

Posted by Greg on December 7, 2009

Posted in Congress | Leave a Comment »

Steve King is a raving lunatic

Posted by Greg on November 7, 2009

The infamous congressman actually says all Americans have health care.  Hm…

Hunter at Kos says it best:

What a noble sentiment. And what a spectacularly, blatantly false one. One would have to believe King knows full well it is false, but then again he is a conservative Republican, and conservative Republicans are at this point synonymous with manufactured realities in which tax cuts cause unicorns to fart rainbows of money across the land and decent public education is the gateway to Stalinism. So it is equally possible that King is being honest, at least within the narrow confines of his own head, and he honestly believes that no Americans are out there who do not have basic health care.

But I know some of the very people who King claims do not exist, and I expect you do too. One of my own close relatives suffers from an untreated hernia — simple enough to fix, but untreated because he is uninsured. He has an option, of course. His “option” is to wait for it to get bad enough to cause an intestinal strangulation — a likelihood, at this point — at which point he will be rushed to the emergency room, hopefully operated on, and then receive a bill for some outrageous figure that he will not be able to pay. But he will only receive this treatment if it reaches the point where he will die without it — merely being incapacitated is insufficient to receive health care.

Read the whole piece.

 

Posted in Congress, Health Care, The Right | 1 Comment »

Neither are most Americans

Posted by Greg on September 24, 2009

Loving my new senator.

Posted in Civil Rights, Congress, Justice and the Courts, Minnesota | Leave a Comment »

I haven’t changed…

Posted by Greg on September 18, 2009

Well, maybe she hasn’t, but the party around her certainly has.  And it will punish her if she does the right thing.

Sixty-one?  Please Ms. Snowe!

Posted in Congress | Leave a Comment »

Pots and kettles

Posted by Greg on June 26, 2009

You know, if there’s anyone who shouldn’t bring up the issue of mental stability, it’s Michele Bachmann.

I know everyone deserves representation in Congress, but can’t the deranged whack job demographic go back to looking to Texas and Georgia for their standardbearers?

Sixth district, WTF have you been smoking?

Posted in Congress, The Right | Leave a Comment »

The Ensign scandal deepens

Posted by Greg on June 19, 2009

Re Maddow’s final question, of course not, they aren’t that self aware…

Posted in Congress, The Right | Leave a Comment »

Separate the bills

Posted by Greg on June 16, 2009

Posted in Congress, Obama Administration | Leave a Comment »

Right for America, not the Senate

Posted by Greg on June 15, 2009

Posted in Congress, Health Care, Obama Administration | Leave a Comment »