What’s with the House Republicans and their inability to listen to the American people or live up to their promises?
Yesterday, I posted here about the Tea Party Caucus throwing its promise not to abuse House rules to advance its anti-everything agenda into the harbor. Just a few weeks after campaigning against what they called abusive and unfair tactics, members of the caucus are now trying to employ the very same tactics in an effort to circumvent House rules.
Now the Republicans are falling down on their promise to “listen to the American people.” Speaker of the House John BoehnerJohn BoehnerBoehner compares Trump to Teddy Roosevelt Boehner: 'Thank God' I wasn't in the middle of election Ryan delays committee assignments until 2017 MORE (R-Ohio) once said, "The people's priorities will be our priorities. The people's agenda will be our agenda. This is our pledge to America; this is our pledge to you!"
But they’ve forgotten that pledge. In their zeal to repeal the Affordable Care Act, they’ve lost touch with the people. Exhibit A: a new CBS News poll that found that a strong majority of Americans oppose the Repealers' idea to defund the provisions of the Affordable Care Act.
According to CBS: Most Americans, 55 percent, disapprove of the plan to cut off funding to the new healthcare reforms, and just 35 percent approve. Among Republicans, approval rises to 57 percent. Forty-nine percent of independents disapprove, and 38 percent approve.
Now, the poll contains mixed results on the popularity of the law overall. But it is clear from this independent poll that the Republicans are acting against the wishes of “the people who sent us here.”
Even the Senate Republicans have already forgotten their promise to listen to the American people. During a speech to the rabid crowd at the Conservative Political Action Conference in Washington, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnellMitch McConnellSenate Democrats dig in as shutdown approaches Overnight Healthcare: Burwell huddles with Dems on fighting ObamaCare repeal Reid: Bring back the earmarks MORE (R-Ky.) pledged to ignore public opinion and follow through on his promise to repeal the law.
“We didn’t swear an oath to uphold whatever’s popular,” he told the repealer-heavy audience in reference to the Affordable Care Act. In the context of public opposition to defunding the law, his words are in conflict with his own statements from November, when he said: “Republicans have a plan for following through on the wishes of the American people.” “And, above all, it means listening to the people who sent us here,” he said.
Well, the American people, a majority of whom do not support this effort to defund or repeal the law, should take note of who is listening to them now.
David Di Martino is CEO of Blue Line Strategic Communications Inc. The views expressed in this blog are his and do not necessarily represent Blue Line’s. Follow David: @bluelinedd.