Tuesday, November 10, 2009

A Wrongful Vote

Our Congressman just decided to vote against the health care reform bill that just passed in the House. His reasoning was that the bill would result in Medicare reductions. So, he joined the “loyal” opposition of reactionary republicans and blue dog democrats to attempt defeat of the bill. We know that republicans have no plan to extend health care to the uninsured and to begin reducing the overall cost of health care. Mainly, what we know is that the leading republicans, currently all the crazy people in the US, basically don’t care about the people who are uninsured. I guess they view such people as somehow morally inferior. But then they view everyone who isn’t in their camp as morally inferior. See, it’s not just politics, or even policy with them. It’s all about their view of what is moral. It’s why they’re so crazed about Gays, and about abortion.
But I digress.
What should I be thinking about my Congressman who voted no on what I consider to be one of the most important pieces of legislation since the passage of Medicare. A good friend once told me that I should never allow “the perfect” to get in the way of “the good.” By which he meant that when we strive to improve our lives, or the lives of others in our world, we should always reach for high order goals, but we should never allow our goals to prevent making actual progress, even it meant that real progress was less than we intended. So, in this case, a bill was being proposed that would advance the cause of universal health care, something republicans oppose. That the bill was imperfect everyone agrees. But passage would enable debate to go forward. Defeat would have strengthened the cause of the crazed opposition. So, regardless of the reasons for my congressman’s vote, he placed himself on the wrong side of history. I understand that he may still vote yes on some subsequent piece of modified legislation, after the bill has gone to reconciliation with whatever the senate passes. But, nonetheless, he took the risk that this bill could have been not only defeated, but buried, as republicans devoutly wish. From my perspective, that risk is simply too large. So, I have informed my congressman that I shall no longer support him. He is assuming, of course, that I have nowhere to go and that I will support him in the future, regardless of what he does. He is wrong. If he continues to act as a republican, then he is no better than the republicans, and does not deserve my vote.
Somehow, some day, democrats are going to have to begin acting like democrats and not scared rabbits, running for cover every time a crazed republican shouts fire in a theatre. They need to stand up and be counted among the responsible Americans, and reject the crazed and twisted arguments of nuts like Michelle Bachman and Sarah Palin. Let that day come soon.
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