The Party of No Ideas

On Friday afternoon, following Republicans' epic healthcare reform failure, Speaker Paul Ryan gave a statement, during which he said it was evidence of the "growing pains" that accompany the switch from being an opposition party to a governing party.

Moving from an opposition party to a governing party comes with growing pains. And, well, we're feeling those growing pains today.
It's a line he's been using for awhile. On March 8, in response to criticism when the plan was unveiled, he said during a press conference: "I think what you're seeing is: We're going through the inevitable growing pains of being an opposition party to becoming a governing party."

Ryan can repeat that line ad infinitum, and it will still be bullshit every time.

The problem is not that the Republican Party is experiencing "growing pains." The problem is that the Republican Party is an incompetent shitshow being run by sadistic clowns.

They had seven years to come up with a viable alternative to the Affordable Care Act, and they didn't do it. They slapped together some unworkable garbage that was roundly panned from both the left and the right, presenting it with unbearably smug confidence, even as their president said breathtakingly ignorant codswallop like: "Nobody knew that health care could be so complicated."

Even members of Ryan's own caucus are starting to make noise about the abject intellectual bankruptcy of their party:
As the prospect of a loss became more real on Friday, the frustrations of GOP lawmakers loyal to the leadership began to boil over. "I've been in this job eight years, and I'm wracking my brain to think of one thing our party has done that's been something positive, that's been something other than stopping something else from happening," Representative Tom Rooney of Florida said in an interview. "We need to start having victories as a party. And if we can't, then it's hard to justify why we should be back here."
The GOP is a party without a platform.

For decades, the primary (and often exclusive) priority of the Republican Party has been to win. The obstructionism, the propaganda, the bigoted wedge-politicking, the gerrymandering, the voter suppression—it's all been in service to winning.

Well, they've won. They've won it all. The presidency, both Houses of Congress, the majority of state governorships, the majority of state legislatures. They'll soon have a majority on the Supreme Court. There ain't nothing left to win.

They've spent decades preparing for—fighting for—this moment. And now that they've arrived, they have nothing to offer. No effective governance. No fully-formed policies. No ideas at all.

[Image is Trump on TV with scroll reading: "Trump blames Democrats for health care failure."]

No, Trump. No. You don't get to blame the Democrats anymore. Your party is the majority. If you can't get it done, the blame is yours and yours alone. Time for the Ownership Party to own that.

"Tax cuts and war" isn't a sufficient national agenda. People need help. The Republican Party promised to deliver it, after spending eight years denying President Obama the ability to provide it.

The failure to address the many needs across this nation will be catastrophic, especially when the only idea to "help" is redistributing the federal budget by siphoning money away from social programs to fund an even more bloated defense budget, thus standing to create even more need.

That failure isn't about "growing pains." It's about a party who has long had no ideas beyond seizing power. Who wanted power for power's sake. Who hasn't a clue how to govern, and, more importantly, hasn't the will to govern well.

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