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home : opinions : editorials April 16, 2014


10/17/2013 6:00:00 AM
Editorial: Congress, lose the partisan dogma
The Daily Courier


It's good news, but we've been down this particular street far too many times.

After two weeks of hassling in Congress, the country has dodged a bullet because lawmakers have agreed on a budget plan that ends the partial government shutdown and keeps the U.S. from falling into default with the bills it needs to pay.

The Senate vote was a bipartisan 81-18. The House followed suit, by a nearly 2-1 margin, 285-144, clearing the way for President Obama's signature - the final act in an odyssey that has put the country's economy at risk and infuriated the American public over the incessant battleground Washington has become.

The legislation permits the Treasury to borrow normally through Feb. 7 or perhaps a month longer, and bankrolls the government through Jan. 15. The bright side is that more than two million federal workers - those who have remained on the job during the partial government shutdown and those who were furloughed - will get their pay.

Speaking from the White House, the president applauded the Senate's vote and promised, "I will sign it immediately. We'll begin reopening our government immediately and we can begin to lift this cloud of uncertainty from our businesses and the American people."

When it came time for members of the House to vote, they bowed to Speaker John Boehner's urging earlier in the day that they back the Senate's deal.

"We fought the good fight. We just didn't win," he conceded, even though the vote was on a bill that included nothing for Republicans, who had until then stood fast in their demands to repeal or scale back Obama's health insurance overhaul law.

The president's signature piece of legislation, the Affordable Care Act - Obamacare - which the Republicans have treated as something they would dearly love to wipe off their shoes, now has the opportunity to emerge into the light. Folks will sign up - or not - and premiums will increase or decrease - in fact rather than in anecdotes alone. And Americans will get a chance to learn what most have wondered all along:

Will it work?

Just because Americans witnessed an end to the impasse Wednesday night, that doesn't mean battle lines will disappear. Unless members on both sides of the aisle get over their partisan dogma and ensure that the government can afford to stay open and meet its fiscal obligations, the bullet the country dodged with the Senate and House votes Wednesday will reappear just after the first of the year.

Some say we Americans have short memories, but we are unlikely to forget - and forgive - if in just a few short months we have to dance this tango again.



Reader Comments

Posted: Monday, October 21, 2013
Article comment by: Growth or Shear, Whats Next?

Question for the Tea Party enthusiast what specific benefit has occurred in Congress from your supporters.

Posted: Monday, October 21, 2013
Article comment by: Just Saying

Tom where's my money?!
You opened your mouth loud and wide a year ago. You stated "There is no way Obama will win re-election. The people will not elect the worse president in history again.
Well, your word is not worth spit. On this issue or any!


Posted: Monday, October 21, 2013
Article comment by: To: Tom Steel

Bwahahahaha, all I you ever Do is whine about WE THE PEOPLE. But in your context WE THE PEOPLE only included the Tea Party wacko's and other Right Winged Extremists.

WE THE PEOPLE are the ones that voted for Obama and want the ACA.

YOU THE PEOPLE are the ones unelected by the ACA because you get your Medicare or Employer paid for insurance. You wring your hands and gnash your teeth and tell us how bad this is going to be for America that now WE THE (previously discriminated against) PEOPLE can now purchase health insurance.

I can see how this might be from the party of I'VE GOT MINE, F---- everybody else.

If you have insurance you just can't believe the insurance companies really turn people away for being pregnant, or having a previous injury, or that they actually take their insurance away for getting sick. I mean, really those people Probably didn't pay their premium and that's why they lost their insurance.

Wake up Tom, not everyone is as fortunate as you even though they may have worked just as hard or harder.

The ACA is the best new LAW to come down the pipe since Medicare.

Could the Private Insurance Companies have gotten ... (Word limit exceeded)


Posted: Monday, October 21, 2013
Article comment by: To: Article comment by: Smoke & Mirrors

Wow Smoke and Mirrors you know that of what you speak. Your whole article is nothing but smoke and mirrors.

First you imply the ACA was passed without any Republican voting. Well that maybe partially true but mostly false. ALL Republicans voted on the Bill it was just a no vote.

Or if you mean the Bill was passed with no Republican input well wrong again. The republicans had a lot of input that watered down the bill until they (the Repubicant's) were sure no one would vote to pass that bill. Well, as we know the rest is history.

As for your economic forecast, where have you been living? Obama took the Republican crashed economy, the worst recession since the Great Depression and brought us out (again no help from the Party of No), to where the deficit has dropped by half and is continuing to fall at the quickest level in over a decade. The rate of the reduction has even the Republican Economists squirming.

The Economy is growing and could grow faster if the Party of No would decide it would work for the good of the country. Unemployment has and continues to fall.

Are things perfect? and is the Economy robust, no! certainly not. ... (Word limit exceeded)


Posted: Monday, October 21, 2013
Article comment by: Jack Jones

"Now, as a Conservative, I happen to think that just about everything Obama does is wrong." ("just about everything") ~ tell me then, what are the things he has done that you would consider 'right'?) This "conservative closed mindset" is exactly why there is little, to none ~ and 'little just left town) ~ hope for a return to civility and/or bipartisanship whether at the national, state or local level. There is a meanness that has infected our ability to even want to feel, acknowledge or express the fundamental, as well as critically important, rational response of empathy. Sadly, it appears to have been replaced by the despicable responses of hate and fear.

Posted: Monday, October 21, 2013
Article comment by: Disclosure would be nice

It would be useful if the people commenting on the ACA disclosed if and how they are insured. It would help others understand their perspective.

For example "I have private insurance which I pay for myself and I would like to see the ACA implemented. My private plan has been going up 10% to 20% a year and I have a very high deductible."

I would like to see if the opponents of the plan have any suggestions for improvements to the ACA that would make it work better and more efficiently. It doesn't make sense to kill the ACA before it has had a chance especially when there is no better alternative offered.


Posted: Monday, October 21, 2013
Article comment by: @Cordes Coyote

What does being retired have to do with anything? Dah. Older citizens are the ones that know the government better and longer, not the younger generations. Many have worked in the government and experienced shut downs before. Get a clue.

Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Cordes Coyote

@Tom Steele- And just what would you know about it? You're a retiree on Medicare.

Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Republican and Proud

Glad I switched from Democrat to Republican, and know they will win in 2016. I would be ashamed to admit to otherwise and have to defend this administration.

Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Hooty Hoo

Don't worry, the Dems will screw this up again. They don't have the majority but they act like they do. What they have is a slim Senate majority and a president who is pretty much a talk show host. He's getting to be an embarrasment to the Democratic party. They weren't crazy about him on a good day, and them days is gone.

Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Hooty Hoo

Don't worry, the Dems will screw this up again. They don't have the majority but they act like they do. What they have is a slim Senate majority and a president who is pretty much a talk show host. He's getting to be an embarrasment to the Democratic party. They weren't crazy about him on a good day, and them days is gone.

Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: @Ryan Jense and Obama supporters....

Obama won, but the country lost. In 90 days the same BS will be repeated and again after that until 2016 when these losers are OUT. Wall Street even commented that we should invest in Europe, NOT the USA, pretty bad, huh.

Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Alan Whitney

Well, Ryan, I'm gratified to learn that you read my posts so closely...

Would you like to join my fan club?


Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: guy good

I think people are getting this all backwards.

The prime mover is culture, not legislation. You can expect the country to become:

. More militarized.
. More centralized in control.
. Have more income disparity.
. More Hispanic.
. A middle class made up of government employees and a few employees of large companies.
. More willing to accept government aid.
. More heterogeneous, thus requiring a firmer hand on the wheel.

Law naturally follows this. I would bet that it's just a secular cycle in action.


Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Smoke & Mirrors

A falsely created high stock market? Harmful high cost healthcare reform snuck through without republican votes? An economy that is NOT getting better? Looks as if our president does not have the country's best interest and only desires to be a "legend in his own mind". It's all smoke & mirrors.

Shutdown or not, we will proudly continue to oppose the liberals and their (lack of) ideas that would actually help the people of this country.

It remains quite clear that the Republicans really do have America's best interest in mind. After all, the deficit has been greatly reduced due to the republican requested sequester.

Hopefully, the liberals will feel the need to neqotiate when the government shuts down again in January.


Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: To: Article comment by: Alan Whitney

Alan did you ever have a brain injury? I fine the word Conservative as a code phrase for brain damage.

You oppose Obama regardless, even when he carries out your Republican agenda.

The ACA was a Republican plan.

Everyone pays was a Republican plan

Cutting the current deficit by 50% doesn't make you happy.

Maybe there is something wrong in your brain?


Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: dutch holland

@Tellthe Truth.......you said.....Who in their right frame of mind would buy something that may or may not work...........


hmmm sounds like Nancy Pelosi when she said about ACA............ ''we have to pass it so we know what's in it."



Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Dance this tango again?

I'm a proud Republican voting democrat for 2014 to give them a chance with their agenda...see if it works without adding "poison pill amendments" just to detract from something we don't like. The last Republican president I voted for brought this nation to it's knees.

Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Tom Steele

The mis named Affordable Care Act will hurt business and families take home pay in ways we are yet to see. Either higher health care costs and higher deductibles or possibly lost hours to escape the punishment of employment fines. Then, the Democrats won but "We the People" lost. As for the ACA being law and passing the Supreme Court so did prohibition pass only to be rejected later by amendment.

Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Voting rules were changed

On October 1st the House Rules Committee took away the right of any member to move for a vote to open the government.

Representative Chris Van Hollen tried to get a house vote on the Senate's resolution that would have opened the government.

The rule change, made on the eve of the shutdown, took away his right to do that and gave that right exclusively to the House majority leader Eric Cantor. (Look up House Rule22 and Resolution 368.)

The Republican members of the House that changed the rule then blamed the Democrats in the Senate and the President for the shutdown.

This isn't a dance (tango). It is duplicitous obstruction. The American electorate deserves better. We need to elect representatives that are intelligent, independent and constructive. Government by obstruction does not serve the people.


Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Attentive Listener

@Just Another Example- That's not what it says. The government employees who kept working through the shutdown will be paid for their work.

With reading skills like that, what other political opinions have you formed?


Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Dumocrats and Retardicans

Democrats AND Republicans should not be allowed to vote for at least a decade as punishment for their hijacking OUR freedom!

Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Teapot Insurection

The stock market has doubled, the deficit cut in half and signed the Republican's health care plan. What's not to like for a Republican voter?

Question, what is more important, do no harm to our countrymen or oppose Obama?.

So far, that shutdown cost us $24 billion in lost opportunity cost.

Is it the intention of the Obama haters to wreck the economy or bring down the government to destroy his legacy? And, what would you replace our democracy with?


Posted: Friday, October 18, 2013
Article comment by: Ryan Jensen

@ Aln Whitney

No, Al, typos happen to everyone (see my spelling of your name above).

But they ARE funny (and they cease to be typos) when the author consistently repeats the same error. Like you.

My point is, over time, you folks gradually dismantle the effectiveness of your points and arguments when your grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc, cause the reader to have to "work hard" to understand what you're saying.

And having observed these comment sections for some time now, I can't help but notice that by and large, the weaker the skill of the writer, the more likely that writer is to be expressing a Republican point of view.


Posted: Thursday, October 17, 2013
Article comment by: Alan Whitney

@Ryan Jensen

Yeah, Ryan, them typos are always good for a yuk. (If you're VERY easily amused, that is...)



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