Kal ZoneBlog

GOP agenda gets bipartisan support

December 15, 2010

Bipartisanship is alive and well in Washington, with Democrats willing to support most of the key principles of the GOP. But bipartisanship only extends so far. One important recent bill that would normally have received broad bipartisan support was defeated by a unified Republican bloc for purely political reasons, without regard for the intrinsic merits of the bill or the interests of constituents:

But don't take this to mean Republicans don't support bipartisanship. Republicans love bipartisanship, as long as it involves compromise by Democrats. Many important Republican-sponsored bills have gotten significant numbers of Democratic votes. For example, the Bush Tax Cuts of 2001 passed with 58 yeas, 46 Republicans and 12 Democrats, with 7 more Democrats present or not voting. However the Bush Tax Cuts of 2003 only got two Democratic votes, finally passing with Vice President Cheney breaking a 50-50 tie. It's interesting to note that the 2003 bill was passed by "reconciliation," meaning that a mere majority vote was sufficient, not the 60-vote supermajority needed to move anything in today's Senate. (But how is it that reconciliation could be invoked for the original 2003 bill, but not the 2010 followup?)

Copyright © Kalle Nemvalts except as noted. Original content on this site is licensed under the Creative Commons CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 License. The Creative Commons license does not cover commercial reuse or adaptation, which must be negotiated separately.