The incoming bunch of House and Senate freshmen better have a whole new way of thinking. It’s not that the much-heralded Class of the 2010 Mandate didn’t do enough. It’s that they didn’t do anything.
Mandate for change
Never in the history of this Republic has a mid-term election brought such a smack-down to the ruling party as that in 2010. The 63-person swing in the House and 7-person swing in the Senate was both retribution (for Porkulus, for ObamaCare, for not even addressing the economy, for the Gulf drilling moratorium, and for the attempts on card check and Cap-and-Trade energy tax) and mandate (stop the spending, stop the regulatory bloom, stop the debt spike, and generally hold the line until we could get a new president and a two-house majority in 2012 and repeal BambiCare). From top to bottom, from governor down to dog catcher, Americans rejected the Democrat agenda in toto. Lock, stock, and two smoking barrels. Republicans had firm control of the House at 242-193, and near-parity in the Senate, 47-53.
Same old Vichy Republicans
What we got for our trouble came a little short of what we call “representation.” Most of these fresh-faced Jimmy-Stewart-goes-to-Washington people gladly rode the wave of Tea Party anger/resolve/desperation to office in Congress. Some of them lied; most of them just lacked the huevos to act on the principles they ran on. The minute they got there, and possibly before, they discovered how Washington works™. Before the first month was gone, they had been co-opted by Speaker Boehner and the Vichy Republicans: turned to the Dark Side, quite truly and seriously.
America sent the Class of 2010 to change how Washington works™. What America got was reruns of the popular TV series “I’ve Seen This One Before.” The Democrats under Pelosi, the Vichy Republicans under Boehner. No real difference. Debt ceiling raised (how many times now?) with no Democrat concessions; government “shutdowns” averted by Republicans agreeing to Democrat spending; no real budget passed, only “continuing resolutions” of old budgets written under Democrat rule; recess appointments when Congress was not in recess; radical anti-Constitutional federal judges being approved; EPA conducting war on coal, on oil, and on entire states like Kentucky and Texas; an illegal war in Libya (the one earlier this year, not the consulate fiasco); sequestration (aka cutting the Defense budget in half).
All that can be laid at the feet of the Vichy Republicans, and the Class of 2010 that stood right there with them. You see, it’s not just how you vote, it’s what you do and what you allow. When Obama recess-appointed 4 people when Congress was not in recess, that was a Constitutional crisis, not a territorial spat. O’Connell and Boehner threw a couple of mini BF’s (see the movie White Chicks) but did nothing. What, did your tampon come loose? [next time, get the ones with wings] What they should have done was shut down all business in Congress until Obama backed down and followed the Constitution. When the Vichy leaders didn’t do it, then the House Freshmen should have done it, led by their so-called leaders like Allen West. Ditto for the Libyan war, and the EPA power grabs. And they should have let the treasury go empty before agreeing to (still more) unabated Democrat spending.
With your shield or on it
Many new (and old) Representatives were shocked and angered that when they marched in lockstep with the Vichy, their constituents went crazy and wore out the Congressional staff with phone calls, email, and snail-mail. “These unreasonable people just don’t understand how Washington works™.” They didn’t like taking the heat for promising one thing on the campaign trail and at the Tea Party rallies, and then joining the good ole’ boy club once they got to Washington.
They’re wrong about one thing, too. Americans understand just fine how Washington works™. We reject it. We want it changed. We sent the Class of 2010 to change it. They didn’t even try.
So, class of 2012. We’re sending you to Congress to change how Washington works™. Do it or die trying. I dare say the American public is not in the mood for any more betrayal.