This is from Fred Barnes’ (of the Weekly Standard) opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal today:
In the days before Tuesday’s passage of an increase in the debt limit, Ms. Pelosi was melodramatic in her attacks on the cuts in domestic spending that Republicans attached to the debt measure. Her comment that Democrats were trying “to save life on this planet as we know it” was widely reported.
But Ms. Pelosi said a lot more. She suggested the Founding Fathers would have opposed the cuts. “We owe it to honor the sacrifice of the Founders” to reject the cuts, she declared. Not only that, but she asserted it was unconstitutional [this is the same person who thought the insurance mandate was Constitutional] for Republicans to raise the possibility of defaulting on the debt payments.
As for House Speaker John Boehner, “he chose to go to the dark side,” Ms. Pelosi said. She added that Republicans are “destroying the public space of clean air, clean water, food safety, the education of our children, the health, financial security of our seniors through Medicare and Medicaid.”
Later Barnes writes:
According to Politico, Rep. Mike Doyle of Pennsylvania accused Republicans of being terrorists. “We have negotiated with terrorists,” he said. “This small group of terrorists have made it impossible to spend any money.” Friendly journalists joined in. Columnist Joe Nocera of the New York Times wrote: “Tea Party Republicans have waged jihad on the American people.”
I know politics is politics, but these political views and views of government are absurd and are the very reason we are in this mess.
Pelosi and Doyle should not have passed whatever grade it was where they learned about government, let alone hold public office where they took an oath to support and defend a Constitution they seem to know so little about.
I have to believe that it’s this absurdity that’s finally exposing folks like Pelosi and Doyle to the voting public. In response to Doyle’s ad hominem characterization of his opponents as terrorists, Barnes writes:
The American people don’t think so. In a Rasmussen poll at the end of July, at the height of the debt debate, Republicans were preferred over Democrats in congressional races 43% to 39%. And a CNN poll released Tuesday found that only 15% of Americans felt the cuts in the debt-limit bill had “gone too far.”
But, I don’t find these poll figures as cheery as Barnes. Given the level of absurdity, I would expect a much lower preference for Democrats and the gap between Republicans and Democrats to be larger. Maybe 43% for Republicans and 15% (closer to the percent of people who thought the cuts “gone too far”) or 20% for Democrats.
The source of the problem isn’t Pelosi and Doyle. The source of problem are voters who continue to vote for them. And, as I discovered by reading Joe and Blake Kernan’s book (I will comment on that in another post) the problem with such voters is that they share their view of government with many 10-year-old children. On top of that, they don’t often entertain the idea that they might be wrong.