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22 Mar 2010 17:38


Politics: On “Baby Killer” and Congress’ miserable tonal problems

  • Listen, we’re not giving either side credit here. The Republicans just had some dude (Texas Rep. Randy Neugebauer) use the words “baby killer” in reference to Bart Stupak (or the bill, depending on what you believe). However, we get the feeling the Democrats aren’t using the opportunity to look like they’re taking the moral high ground here. Both sides look ugly at the end of all of this, and there aren’t any winners here.
  • Republican blech When Joe Wilson shouted “You lie!” at Obama, the Republicans had an opportunity to step away from the tonal problems the health care bill has created. (The chart above is another example.) Instead, they stepped in it deeper, allowing for that tone to totally permeate the party. And now, they own this unhelpful tone to the point that they can’t find the rabbit hole again.
  • Democratic spin As super-journo Matt Taibbi notes on True/Slant, the Democrats are claiming that the bill was “built on a series of principles that Republicans espoused for years.” What? Come on. This isn’t true. While the Democrats are certainly becoming more centrist, it’s certainly not the same thing. This just makes the other side mad. That language gets in the way.
  • Take a step back If Congress wants to really, truly help the needs of the people, it needs to look back at the past year and figure out exactly why this country and its Congress has a tone not seen since the 1960s. It’s not taxes. It’s not racism. It’s not any of that. Can we call it a tempest in a teapot? No. If anything, the tempest shattered the teapot, and voters have to pick up the pieces.