At yesterday’s White House Briefing, bipartisanship was again the theme of the day.
In light of Scott Brown’s win in Massachusetts, reporters wanted to know, was President Obama going to start working with Republicans? Was he willing to start all over on health care reform and shape a bill that Republicans could also support?
If only Press Secretary Robert Gibbs had told the truth: Bipartisanship is dead! At least, in this Congress.
God knows, President Obama tried.
On the stimulus, Obama went up to Capitol Hill and met with House Republicans to discuss the bill. He got not one Republican vote in the House.
On health care, Obama waited while Max Baucus met with the “Gang of Six” – including Olympia Snowe, Chuck Grassley, and Mike Enzi – to shape a bill Republicans could support. He got not one Republican vote on the floor of the Senate.
Doesn’t Obama realize by now? As long as John Boehner and Mitch McConnell are in charge, there will be no bipartisan cooperation in Congress. Because they don’t want it. They’ve decided simply to be against everything Obama is for.
On health care, climate change, jobs, immigration, it’s time to forget bipartisanship – and simply get the job done.
That’s my parting shot for today.