Conservatives and Republicans today suffered their most crushing legislative defeat since the 1960s.
It’s hard to exaggerate the magnitude of the disaster. Conservatives may cheer themselves that they’ll compensate for today’s expected vote with a big win in the November 2010 elections. But:
(1) It’s a good bet that conservatives are over-optimistic about November – by then the economy will have improved and the immediate goodies in the healthcare bill will be reaching key voting blocs.
(2) So what? Legislative majorities come and go. This healthcare bill is forever. A win in November is very poor compensation for this debacle now.
So far, I think a lot of conservatives will agree with me. Now comes the hard lesson:
A huge part of the blame for today’s disaster attaches to conservatives and Republicans ourselves.
(this is a conservative republican blog, fyi)
It's interesting - this process brought out the worst in our governmental process. And whether you like Obamacare or not (and for the record, I do by-and-large), it is indeed flawed. Republicans dragged their feet and chose to be confrontational from the very beginning, rather than engaging in the process to help craft legislation that reflects values of both parties. They let down their own constituents by refusing to lead and playing a partisan, political game. They went for bravado, and were hoping to shoot the moon. Democrats were painted into a corner, so they had to strike less-than-tasteful deals within their own party to pass legislation, which only weakens a bill, never makes it stronger. That no Republican was willing to work with Democrats helped us walk down this road.