The Knights Who Say “Nay”
Eve Fairbanks is making sense about the difference between House and Senate Republicans, the unanimous “nay” voters and the guys who even broke down and voted for Eric Holder.
But I don’t think this explains the ways in which House Republicans aid the Senate Republicans. House Republicans placate the conservative base, which, if you tune in to talk radio, spends its idle time blasting Senate Republicans who voice possible compromise with Democrats. They also, clearly, have given Republicans room to maneuver on the stimulus package. But I think the greatest gift of the House Republicans is on the PR side. With no possibility of dealmaking, they can spend their time, and direct their staffers to spend their time, scorching Democrats and proposing their own “alternative bills” that have as much chance of support as the Child Molester Tax Relief Act of 2009—bills that are nonetheless presented as signs that the opposition party has ideas, and is looking to make deals.