New Dem Speaker of the House promised it shortly after the November election victory of ’06. And today, new Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid echoed the comments: “We must turn the page on partisanship and usher in a new era of bipartisan progress,” Reid said.
And it sounds all nice and snuggly and makes for a good evening news sound-byte. But the truth is in the details, outside of the five-second snippet network bigwigs allow while covering for their liberal allies on Capitol Hill.
Reid continued, “The president has 22 months left in office. If he wants to accomplish anything, he will have to work with us in Congress to pass bipartisan legislation.”
Or, in other words, he’ll have to pass the Democratic agenda, whether he likes or agrees with it, or not. That’s what bipartisanship really means.
And Speaker Pelosi has made it clear the Dems don’t want to play together with their GOP counterparts. According to a Washington Post report by Lyndsey Layton and Juliet Eilperin, “But instead of allowing Republicans to fully participate in deliberations, as promised after the Democratic victory in the Nov. 7 midterm elections, Democrats now say they will use House rules to prevent the opposition from offering alternative measures, assuring speedy passage of the bills and allowing their party to trumpet early victories.”
So Speaker Pelosi and the new Dem majority may give lip-service to bipartisanism, but in reality, they’re just like they were in 1994 when Newt Gingrich and the GOPers kicked the Dems out: they’re hogging the Lincoln bedroom, so to speak, while “generously” offering Republicans the leftover loft bed in the attic of Congress.