Yesterday Republicans put three items on the House floor that might have created exceptions in the Republican Shutdown for Washington DC, the VA, and the National Parks Service. These are areas over which Republicans have received a lot of complaint for their hateful blackmail, so they hoped that they could take some heat off themselves by creating the appearance of wanting to pass these exceptions. At the same time they are blaming Democrats for blocking them, but that’s a lie too.
The latest proposal from House Republicans to reopen only certain parts of government failed Tuesday night as Democrats insisted they would not pick winners and losers among federal services, and the White House threatened a veto.
The latest Republican plan was to keep open national parks, veterans services and the District of Columbia, an approach modeled on recommendations by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who has led the GOP’s strategy in the standoff that resulted in the first shutdown of the federal government in 17 years.
“If the Democrats are really concerned about funding the VA, let’s fund it,” said Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-S.C.), as House Republicans emerged from an afternoon strategy session.
But three bills failed in the face of Democratic opposition. House Republicans used a procedure that required a two-thirds vote, hoping that would pressure Democrats to vote for them, knowing the bills would fail without their support. All three, however, were rejected largely on party-line votes… [emphasis added]
Inserted from <LA Times>
As heartless as this may appear, Democrats were absolutely correct to vote against these measures. Why? Because we’re all in this together, except the bastards causing it.
Republicans proposed that Democrats agree that the people of Washington DC are more important that the people suffering in hundreds of cities and towns all over America, because that’s politically convenient for Republicans. They are not. That’s just a divide and conquer strategy.
Republicans proposed that Democrats agree that Veterans’ care, as much as they deserve it, is more important than care for the people who may die, since the funding for their care has been cut off, because that’s politically convenient for Republicans. It is not. That’s just a divide and conquer strategy.
Republicans proposed that Democrats agree that allowing people to go to National Parks, watch Panda Cam, etc. is more important than EPA cleaning up toxic waste sites, because that’s politically convenient for Republicans. It is not. That’s just a divide and conquer strategy.
Moreover, the article missed the boat in one way. Republicans weren’t trying to get Democrats to support these measures. They had been informed that would not happen. Republicans did not want to pass the measures. If they had, all they had to do is bring them to the floor using normal procedures. Instead they chose a procedure that requires a 2/3 supermajority, knowing in advance that the measures would fail. I’m guessing their next ploy will be to actually pass refunding for some small project with strong emotional appeal and send it to the Senate, where Democrats must say No and hold out for the millions od Americans that desperately need a clean CR.
This was all kabuki: a divide and conquer scam.