The Washington Independent
The Washington Independent

Dems Go Small. GOP Still Says ‘No.’

After a legislative year chock full of big accomplishments, The New York Times reports that Democrats are looking to go small in the lead-up to midterm

Rian Mcconnell
News
Last updated: Jul 31, 2020 | Jul 26, 2010

After a legislative year chock full of big accomplishments, The New York Times reports that Democrats are looking to go small in the lead-up to midterm elections this November:

Democrats will try to stave off electoral disaster in November with tools like these: electric-car batteries, free mammograms and loans for dry cleaners. [...]

You can see it in the administration’s piece-by-piece rollout of the new health care law, and Mr. Obama’s travels to highlight individual benefits of economic stimulus legislation. And you can see it in the small-business lending fund that the administration is advocating on Capitol Hill alongside Senator Mary Landrieu, Democrat of Louisiana, who beseeches colleagues to act in the name of the Taco Sisters restaurant in Lafayette, La.

By scuttling a comprehensive climate bill and choosing to focus instead on measures like extending unemployment benefits and backing a small-business lending bill, congressional Democrats are trying to pass less ideological measures that they hope will both attract Republican support and give a boost to the economy. Despite Democrats’ scaled-back ambitions, however, Republicans seem like they’re getting more comfortable, not less, with just saying “no” between now and the midterms:

But the barrage of “no” votes from the GOP has not abated. Emboldened by sagging approval ratings of the Democratic-controlled Congress, Republicans almost unanimously opposed a bill to overhaul the financial regulatory system that President Obama signed into law; they are against a measure to increase the disclosure of campaign spending by corporations; and they’ve largely eliminated the chance of passing a series of measures Democrats say could help the economy.

The opposition has left Democrats fuming. They say Republicans complain that Congress should focus more on the economy but oppose every measure Democrats take up to create jobs. In the Democratic view, the GOP is cynically blocking measures to reduce unemployment so they ensure an angry electorate this fall who will want to vote out incumbents, most of whom are Democrats.

“They want to blame us for failing to get things done that they themselves have blocked us from getting done,” said Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

Rian Mcconnell | Rian is a Villanova University graduate who was born in DuBois, Pennsylvania. He graduated from Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia with a medical degree. His residency was at Thomas Jefferson and its associated Wills Eye Hospital, and he finished his education with fellowships in cataract and corneal surgery at the University of Connecticut. He has a vast experience in ophthalmic surgery, with a focus on cataract surgery, corneal transplantation, and laser refractive procedures. He serves on the board of Vision Health International, an agency that provides eye care and surgery to indigent patients in Central and South America, in addition to his surgical practice.

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