Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Why Congress Can't Act

The reason Congress cannot act is that bipartisanship is now a term for what happens within the Democratic Party. The Blue Dogs are the new Republicans, and those who call themselves Republicans constitute a new party, the Radicals. They cannot be reasoned with, so their presence in Congress is as though the voters had decided to elect 41 lunatics from an asylum to the Senate, and whatever their number is to the House. Before Reagan, or perhaps Bush I, a bill required just 50 or 60% of the members to pass; a bipartisan goal that was often attainable. Now, however, the bipartisan goal to pass a bill is virtual unanimity, since the Radicals are out of it entirely. What is now impossible in the Senate would become merely very difficult if Reid would restore the true filibuster, or change the rules to prevent it entirely. 50 Senate votes would still require 85% agreement among the liberal and conservative Democrats.

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