Six years ago, when the Republicans controlled the Legislative, Executive and Judicial branches of government, they rammed through Congress a Medicare prescription drug bill that they paid for by borrowing billions of dollars, presumably from Communist China.
This month, when Democrats in the Senate proposed a health-care overhaul that the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office adjudged would pay for itself and require no borrowing, all the Republicans voted against it, including 24 senators — over half the caucus — who voted for the budget-busting Medicare expansion in 2003.
These same Republicans were also onboard for George W. Bush’s tax cut for the wealthy and deficit funding of Bush’s two wars. They also advocated underfunding the regulatory agencies that provided oversight for financial institutions and even the nation’s food supply.
So how do they justify this gigantic — and nonsensical — flip-flop on fiscal responsibility?
Here’s what Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, said — in a classic Kinseyan gaffe*:
[When Bush and the GOP controlled the government six years ago] “it was standard practice not to pay for things…We were concerned about it, because it certainly added to the deficit, no question.”
*Michael Kinsey once said that, in Washington, a “gaffe” is when someone inadvertently tells the truth.
- Section: News & Comment