With all due respect to my friend and colleague Mr. Stranahan, I present the following fable — even though it’s become a bit of an overused thing:
A scorpion and a frog met on the bank of a stream and the scorpion asked the frog to carry him across on its back. The frog asked, “How do I know you won’t sting me?” The scorpion said, “Because if I do, I will die too.” The frog was satisfied, and they set out, but in midstream, the scorpion stung the frog. As they both began to sink, the frog had just enough time to ask “Why?” And the scorpion replied: “Because it is my nature…”
Make no mistake: the Republican leadership are still Bush Republicans. They rubberstamp the twisted whim of Rush Limbaugh and so far they’ve shown nothing but bad faith in dealing with the president. And while the president is absolutely justified in taking a bigger, more “mature” and civil tone in dealing with them, they’ve done nothing in return to mitigate their awful reputation and destructive behavior. Michael Steele won’t fix it — he has no mandate for change (six ballots!), nor does he have the power to override the Limbaughs of the party.
In just the last seven days, they’ve been offered concessions and yet they all voted no. They’ve injected into the media lies about fake CBO reports. They’ve spread racially-driven talking points demonizing a nonexistent ACORN provision in the bill. They’ve claimed bipartisanship even though not a single one of them voted with the president. I don’t know about you, but that sort of opposite-day reasoning is the cornerstone of Bush Republicanism.
This is their nature, and letting down our guard before they unequivocally prove otherwise is a mistake.