Friday, February 22, 2008

Business As Usual

More evidence that the Republicans in the Legislature have no intention of being sane and rational human beings anytime soon.

Yesterday in the House- the Democrats had to resort to some procedural moves to drop irrelevant amendments concerning the MBT surcharge and the "partial birth" abortion act (a term that has no relevance in medical society whatsoever) so they could actually get some real work done on the Michigan Catastrophic Claims Association bills, which is legislation designed to help protect citizens from the rising cost of insurance. They condensed these bills down, which allowed the amendments (which had nothing to do with insurance rates, keep in mind) to be dropped, which of course started yet another foam-at-the-mouth hissy fit from the Republicans, complete with threats of obstruction from here on out.

In other words, if the House Republicans don't get to blow up the budget and try to pass redundant and divisive election year legislation that they can then turn around and beat the Democrats on the head with, they are simply going to make life miserable for everyone involved. This is what Rep. Brian "My Way or the Highway" Palmer had say after the follies- from MIRS-

"I think this may pretty much kill this idea of bipartisanship," Palmer said. "Unfortunately, now I think you'll be seeing us putting up amendments on everything. What we've been trying to do all along is get a yes or no on whether the Speaker will allow a vote on the partial-birth abortion ban, the way he promised he would. If he'll bring it up, we'll deal with it one way. If he won't, we'll go another route. We can deal with it either way. But he won't even let us know if it's yes or no."

Palmer said the Right to Life of Michigan is ramping up its pressure on the House to take a vote on the ban.

The quote in Gongwer was even more inflammatory-

In a press release issued after the vote, Mr. Palmer said, "Politics prevailed today over what is best for the unborn. Infant children will continue to be sacrificed every day the Democrats allow this procedure to continue."

As if you can run right down to the 7-11 and find the Democrats have set up a booth to get this done or something. Utterly ridiculous statement to make.

But Greg Bird, spokesperson for House Democrats, said, "Today was about holding the insurance industry accountable and preventing dramatic rate increases on families, not about playing political games."

Apparently political games are all the Republicans have to offer us this year. As we have pointed out before, "bipartisanship" means that you will let them have their way or they will obstruct anything and everything that comes before them, and for good measure will verbally light themselves on fire to please the DeVos wing of the MRP.

So much for all the rhetoric about getting along and getting things done. Question now - will the traditional media take notice that this is going on and call it out for what it is? Or do things have to get really bad again before anyone notices and then blames the entire Legislature for what essentially is bad faith behavior on the part of the Republicans?

We have seen this movie before.