Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Bailout Bill Failure

I'm stunned over the failure of the bailout bill to pass. Didn't McCain tell us on Friday it was essentially a done deal so he could join the debate? I have two quick observations.

1.) Nancy Pelosi' speech was atrocious. She should be removed as Speaker of the House. The woman is clearly too divisive. I don't know how she's elected as Speaker of the House (if she's elected). But, I hope she loses the position. There was no need for gloating, posturing and simply antagonizing Republicans right before this crucial vote that needed bipartisan cooperation. Shame on you, Nancy Pelosi. I've defended you for a while now. But, this is indefensible and inexcusable.

2.) The Republican leadership was miserable. On these types of votes they are supposed to know before hand how many votes they can deliver. Both Democrats and Republicans had good reasons for voting against the bill which was far from perfect. But, each side committed to enough votes to get it passed. The Dems on the far left didn't think it went far enough to protect homeowners. The Republicans on the far right didn't like the whole concept. But leadership, on both sides, thought it was necessary. In spite of Nancy's stupid speech, the Dems delivered the votes they committed to. The Republicans fell short. Any childish Congressman who voted against the bill because of the speech isn't worth of being in the House.

The bill is very unpopular among the American people. No one wanted to be on record on voting for it. But, I think most of them agreed it was a necessary evil. They didn't get their ducks in a row and give permission to just enough people who really needed to say "no" (those in close reelection races) to say no and still get the bill through. And Bush did a lousy job of explaining to the American people why it was necessary. Today, after the vote, he's addressing the nation again. George Bush has lost all credibility with the American people and may as well be hiding in the cave with Bin Ladin. Where has he been?

I never thought our leadership could be as bad as it is. But, they never cease to amaze me.

6 comments:

Kansas Bob said...

I think that leadership on this bill came from main street Brian. Many DC politicians are afraid of the backlash of voting for this bailout.. especially the ones that are up for re-election.

My thinking is that they need to take their time on this legislation and get it right.. the word of the day should be patience not expediency.

I think that wisdom might come if our congressional leaders stand up to the pressure to get-er-done and find a way to insure that the interests of American taxpayers are at the heart of legislation.. the bill needs to protect Main Street and no Wall Street.

brian said...

Bob,

I can't say I disagree with you. I'm flip-flopping on this thing more than John McCain (whoops did I say that out loud?).

At first I was for it. Paulson had me sold. When I saw Pelosi on Bush's side, I thought this must be important. Then, Someday convinced me we needed to slow down. Then, we got the detailed bill worked out. And all the leadership seemed to agree we needed this. Now, I just don't know.

What I do know is this. The average American doesn't have the time, education or the data to figure this all out. This is what we pay our representatives to do. If we don't need the bill, tell us we don't and what we do need. What everybody seems to agree on is we need something.

BTW, I got up early this morning specifically so I could hear Bush's speech (I thought they said it was going to be at 7:45 this morning). Then I found out it was at 8:45 and I was a few minutes late. I missed it! How long did he talk?

Kansas Bob said...

Bush said..

..that what matters is that we get a law,

..big impact on pensions and retirement accounts,

..it is adifficult vote for memebers of congress,

..we are in an urgent situation,

..large money to fix large problem,

..tax payer costs far less than if bill is passed

..congress must act

..administration will work with Congress

..economy depends on decisive action.

brian said...

Oh the spin! I'm getting dizzy. Someone posted an article accusing the Democrats of "playing to lose" with this bill. Here's my response.

This is poppycock, Catherine. The Democrats (the opposing party to the President and his appointees who asked for the bailout) delivered the votes they promised on this UNPOPULAR bill. Nobody wanted to vote for it. The American people are all over this and do not want it. No one wants their name on it.

Each side should have delivered 50% of their delegation to be "fair" so neither side had to take the blame for this. Again, this meant the Democrats had to reach across and vote with an unpopular Republican President. They delivered more than 50%. They delivered 140 with 95 against. The Republicans (the party of the President who asked for the bill) were 65 for and 133 against even though they promised they had at least 80 for it.

I find it amazing that you could possibly twist this around to "blame" the Democrats. The American people didn't want this bill. No one wanted their name on it. The Democrats, in this case, took the unpopular position. The Republicans (concerned about reelection) did not step up and vote for the bill because their constituents were flooding their offices with emails and phone calls telling them not to vote for it. If Congress thought it should have been done, each party should have had some of their people take an unpopular stand and vote for it.

Facts are facts. You can spin them pretty much until they're unrecognizable. But, the Democrats voted for the bill by a pretty wide majority while the Republicans voted against it by an even wider majority. The American people got what they wanted. If the Democrats truly wanted to lose, they wouldn't have played to lose. They would have taken the popular opinion road and not played at all.

I'll give you this. Maybe (just maybe) the Dems didn't go all out to get all the votes they could have. While I don't think they wanted to lose, they sure didn't want this to be a "Democratic bill". Why should they? This should have been a bi-partisan effort. So, even if the Dems didn't give it their full effort, how much more blame do the Republicans get for not even delivering 50% of their delegation?

Kansas Bob said...

Not sure who Catherine is Brian but I do think that Americans needed a reason to support the bill.. the fear mongering on all sides of this is awful.

On a lighter note.. maybe the democrats need to start calling themselves mavericks :)

brian said...

Bob,

I'll confess I don't know if we need the bail out or not. We've been lied to so many times by this administration I lost any little confidence I ever had in them. But, most "experts" seem to agree that something needs to be done. And, what I know we have seen for sure is a lack of leadership. Why hasn't the administration made it clear, in pretty pictures and terms we can understand why the guy struggling to pay for gasoline should give $700B to a bunch of bankers on Wall Street? I think that's the general perception of the "bail out".

Yes, the Dems as the mavericks. Gotta love the irony.

Peace,
Brian