The House passed the $787 billion economic stimulus bill by a vote of 246-183, although a week of negotiations and lobbying by President Obama failed to convince a single Republican to support the bill.House Minority Leader John Boehner, in explaining GOP opposition to the bill, says something rather curious:
Instead of voting for the gargantuan package of tax cuts and public works spending, key Republicans made last ditch speeches denouncing the bill. Seven Democrats also voted against it.
Am I reading this correctly? Is Boehner saying that this abomination of legislation is the result of bad process? That if, somehow, the Republicans and their ideas had been included in the process, they wouldn't be united in opposition?
"It's disappointing the way this process has worked, and the outcome," House Minority Leader John Boehner, waving the bulky report in his hands, said on the House floor. "Bad process leads to bad policy and that's what we have in my view. ... I hope it works but I surely have my doubts. ... This is the epitome of what I came here to stop."
"I'm going to vote no and I'm going to hope that next time. ... You'll include us and you'll include our ideas," the Ohio Republican said, clearly addressing Democratic leaders.
Suppose that House Dems had included the Republicans, and that many Republican "ideas" ended up being included in the final bill -- let's say the final result was 40% Republican ideas and 60% Democrat ideas. Would the 40% the Republicans got be enough to get them to vote Yea, in spite of the mindboggling shortcomings of the 60% the Democrats got?
If you've got a better "spin" on Boehner's remarks, I'd love to hear it.
And now, it's on to the Senate, where it's almost certain that the GOP opposition will not be unanimous.