Tuesday, May 5, 2009

A revealing story: What will LoBiondo do on health care?

It's a story that doesn't mention Frank LoBiondo, but since he has embraced the Republican "Party of No" strategy, this Time magazine story on health care reform is very important to understanding him:

When Barack Obama informed congressional Republicans last month that he would support a controversial parliamentary move to protect health-care reform from a filibuster in the Senate, they were furious. That meant the bill could pass with a simple majority of 51 votes, eliminating the need for any GOP support for the bill. Where, they demanded, was the bipartisanship the President had promised? So, right there in the Cabinet Room, the President put a proposal on the table, according to two people who were present. Obama said he was willing to curb malpractice awards, a move long sought by the Republicans and certain to bring strong opposition from the trial lawyers who fund the Democratic Party.

What, he wanted to know, did the Republicans have to offer in return?

Nothing, it turned out. Republicans were unprepared to make any concessions, if they had any to make.

Whether it's due to their political philosophy or political opportunism, Republicans have no interest in making government work. We saw this with Bush, and we see it again in their no votes. LoBiondo has been happily riding that train.

Will any Republicans pursue compromises? Where is LoBiondo on health care?