CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Sometimes it seems that Republicans in Washington have a single goal: to oppose every plan that helps American working families.
The GOP House majority succeeded in killing the jobs program backed by President Obama. It also passed a farm bill wiping out food stamps for 48 million Americans. Now it's slashing block grants for homeless shelters, senior centers, and the like. The only economic strategy favored by Republicans is tax cuts for the rich. They balk at immigration reform offering Hispanics a path to citizenship. The impending House budget bill would slash billions from dozens of people-helping programs. Etc.
Especially galling is 39 party-line House votes to repeal the 2010 Affordable Care Act that will bring health insurance to millions of less-privileged American families. Why stage the same pointless vote 39 times? Washington Post columnist Matt Miller commented:
"At bottom, Obamacare is a moral assertion that it is wrong when a wealthy nation has 50 million people without health insurance, when medical bills are a leading cause of bankruptcy for families, and when millions of luckless souls are unable to get coverage because they have preexisting conditions. The House GOP today says these are not real problems."
Ironically, the ACA was copied from former Republican medical reform plans, including the Massachusetts system installed by GOP Gov. Mitt Romney.
Regardless, Miller said Washington Republicans proclaim: "We still can't be with you. We have to damn you as un-American. We have to deceive the public about your aims and methods. We have to do everything in our power to stop you from using our preferred approach to bring a measure of security to the middle class."
Thanks to endless GOP obstruction in the House, Miller said, America faces the dismal prospect that when the Obama administration ends, little improvement will have been gained: "The United States will be more unequal than at any time since the 1920s; there will be less upward mobility in the United States than in most of Europe; one in five children will live in poverty; our school rankings will continue to slip internationally; poor children will still be assigned to the worst teachers and most rundown facilities in the country; 12,000 Americans will still die each year from gun violence; college will be less affordable and student debt higher than ever; half of all jobs will pay less than $35,000 a year; the wealthiest 400 Americans will have more assets than the bottom 150 million combined. ... "
The Post writer said President Obama's economic strategy, outlined in a major speech last Wednesday, probably will be stymied by more GOP House blockage.
He said there's little chance for Democrats to regain control of the House in next year's mid-term voting, so the nation should hope for a "wave election" in 2016 that will hand Congress and the White House to the party that works for average folks instead of the privileged elite.
We can't predict future elections, but we hope his vision comes true.