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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Jan. 4, 2007 / 14 Teves, 5767

Promises, promises

By Cal Thomas


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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | In June of 2004, when then-House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) was trying to put the best face on Democratic intentions should they win a majority in the 2006 election, she issued a "minority bill of rights." It promised that Democrats would not treat Republicans as Republicans often treated Democrats should voters put Democrats back in charge of the House.


Pelosi promised a "bipartisan administration of the House" and a return to a more "regular democratic order for legislation." That meant bills would be considered under a procedure that "allows open, full and fair debate consisting of a full amendment process that grants the minority the right to offer its alternatives, including a substitute." Pelosi promised, "Members should have at least 24 hours to examine bills and conference report text prior to floor consideration. Rules governing floor debate must be reported before 10 p.m. for a bill to be considered the following day."


In the political version of what might be called, "of course, I'll respect you in the morning," House Democrats have announced they intend to break that promise. They will use House rules to keep Republicans from offering alternative measures because they want to show voters how quickly they can pass their "first 100 hours" agenda and allowing Republicans to offer amendments or alternative legislation, they figure, would slow them down.


Republicans are complaining about this, as one might expect, but after 12 years of treating Democrats as if they were subjects in a GOP dictatorship, they are unlikely to attract much sympathy. Plus, Democrats will have much of the big media on their side, which the Republicans, during their time in the majority, did not. The media treated every Republican legislative effort as insensitive, cruel and beneficial only to "the rich." Don't look for any "Gingrich That Stole Christmas" covers like Time magazine ran on former Speaker Newt Gingrich. The media will treat Democrats as caring, compassionate crusaders for the common man.


Here's one major difference between the 1994 election and the one in 2006 and the aftermath from each. In 1994, Republicans told voters, before and after the election, precisely what they would do. Speaker Newt Gingrich did not promise fealty with Democrats, nor did he promise to practice a political Golden Rule. Voters disgusted with Democrats had given Republicans a mandate and they would ram through their "Contract with America."


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Democrats promised they would practice a political Golden Rule, doing unto Republicans what they wished Republicans had done unto them. I recommended such a strategy for Republicans in 1994, suggesting that kindness and inclusiveness would serve Republicans better in the long run than a victory dance on Democrats' political grave. That advice was ignored, contributing to Democratic anger and bitterness and to the Republican defeat last November.


Democrats now face the same temptations that power always brings and the same pressures from their liberal interest groups that Republicans faced 12 years ago from their conservative interest groups. Unlike the Republicans, however, Democrats promised to behave differently. They claimed to have learned their lessons from the way they used to treat Republicans — and the way Republicans treated them. Apparently they will not be different, at least not until they push through their agenda that includes a minimum wage increase and ethics reform.


It is ethics reform that will — and should — receive the most attention. Voters have not trusted government for some time and the polls show their approval ratings for Congress are even lower than President Bush's approval numbers. The House will first consider ethics rules for itself and next month plans to take up bipartisan lobbying reform legislation proposed by Rep. Marty Meehan (D-MA) and Christopher Shays (R-CT) that would create an Office of Public Integrity to help enforce the new rules.


Will the Democratic leadership live up to the public's expectations, or down to their political lower natures? Democrats have a unique opportunity to reinvent themselves and restore public confidence. For the sake of the national interest, I'm hoping they rise to that occasion, but politicians being who and what they are, I'm betting they'll yield to temptation and conduct business as usual. But for the country's sake, I hope I'm wrong.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

JWR contributor Cal Thomas is the author of, among others, The Wit and Wisdom of Cal Thomas Comment by clicking here.


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