Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Whining About Process

I like Matt Yglesias's reaction to the latest Republican complaints about long-established Congressional procedures.
Truly the last refuge of the damned is to complain about the nature of the congressional procedure that the majority is using to pass its agenda. Everyone knows that 100 percent of the people who like the underlying health care bill will approve of the use of the procedural mechanisms necessary to enact it, whereas 100 percent of the process-objectors will also be people who don’t like the bill.
At any rate, David Brooks does hide one little gem in the column that Yglesias is taking aim at:
Once partisan reconciliation is used for this bill, it will be used for everything, now and forever. The Senate will be the House. The remnants of person-to-person relationships, with their sympathy and sentiment, will be snuffed out. We will live amid the relationships of group versus group, party versus party, inhumanity versus inhumanity.
I have a counter-prediction: after the patch passes (if it passes), nothing at all will change in the Senate.  At all.  Why should it?  There's nothing new happening here.  It's just reconciliation, a thirty year old procedure that's been used for far more important items than the anticipated health care reform patch.

Update: Chait too! And Benen!

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