Republican leaders in Congress have proven once again that they have no backbone when it comes to major policy decisions. The U.S. Senate last Wednesday passed a bill by a vote of 81-18 to raise the debt ceiling and end the partial shutdown of the Federal government. The “deal” was crafted by Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and Senate Majority leader Harry Reid (D-NV). The House passed the Senate bill later that evening by a vote of 285-144 with no effort by House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) to stop it.
So what does this so-called “deal” offer to the American people? Well, in short, it simply kicks the can down the road for the one-millionth time. First, the debt ceiling is raised again meaning the Federal government is now allowed to continue borrowing money through February 7th of next year. Second, Obamacare will be funded at least until January 15th. Third, House and Senate members have until the end of the year to negotiate a longer-term budget and deficit-reduction plan. No doubt Republicans will pretend to fight this coming battle tooth and nail and then cave at the last second in fear of being blamed for all of government’s problems.
Every time a major budget battle rolls around, the liberal media is quick to blame Republicans for failing to compromise with Democrats. The truth is, Republicans are the only ones doing the compromising. Democrats always get what they want out of these “deals” while Republicans sacrifice everything. If President Obama and the Democrats know they can so easily push over Republicans and win these budget battles, their strategy will never change. Republican leaders in Congress need to quit playing along and start standing for principle.
Part of the problem for Republicans is not getting their message out to the American people. Republicans need to do a better job of reminding the American people of some hard facts that the liberal media purposely ignores. Congress is required by law to pass a budget every year. However, Democrats who control the Senate have refused to pass a budget for the past five years. And no, don’t say this is the House Republicans’ fault. The House has only been under Republican control for the past two-and-a-half years. Democrats controlled a majority in both chambers prior to 2010 and still failed to pass a budget. Furthermore, the recent partial shutdown of the Federal government had nothing to do with Republicans’ refusal to pass spending bills as Democrats want to claim. The truth is, the House passed several bills to fund every program of the Federal government except for Obamacare. The Democrats blocked all of them for this one reason. If there is anyone who adopted an all or nothing strategy and refused to compromise, it was Obama and the Democrats. The Republicans should never have caved, because they had no reason to. As usual, they got nothing out of another “deal”.
It is important to note that not all Republicans in Congress are to blame. Senators Ted Cruz (R-TX), Mike Lee (R-UT), and Rand Paul (R-KY) have proven themselves time and again to be true conservatives. They stood up and fought for principle, as they were elected to do, and led the fight to defund Obamacare and stop another debt ceiling raise. While they did not win the battle, the war is not over. We trust that they will continue the hard fight, and despite the hateful rhetoric thrown at them on a daily basis, these men should be recognized as the true American, freedom-loving patriots that they are.
If there has been any good to come out of all this nonsense, it is the fact that more and more Americans are getting fed up with the current Federal government. We elect these people to stand up and fight for the values we hold dear, and they continuously erode our trust. Approval ratings for Congress continue to drop, as they should, which is great considering there are Congressional elections next year. Time to throw the spineless politicians out and replace them with people driven by principle.