Republicans Losing Their Sh*t Over IRA Bill. What Fun!
My perhaps simplistic take on legislative politics is that anything that makes Mitch McConnell cry is good for the American people. Remember how grumpy he looked when the late Senator John McCain foiled his attempt to deny millions healthcare? He’s possibly even more pissed now that Joe Manchin went full Democrat on him.
After Democrats passed the Inflation Reduction Act, McConnell released this melodramatic, lie-filled statement. I imagine him weeping while furiously pounding keys on a manual typewriter.
The last time Senate Democrats tried to remake the economy on party lines, they shoved American families into the worst inflation in 40 years. Democrats got all-you-can-eat liberal spending and working families got stuck with the bill.
Some economists have suggested that the American Rescue Plan might’ve contributed to the nation’s high core inflation. However, others believe that it helped saved the pandemic-pummeled economy. Republicans are in no position to quibble since their “solution” was do nothing and let people starve.
The Republicans’ problem here is that the Manchin-Schumer bill is called the “Inflation Reduction Act,” as in “this bill will reduce inflation.” Manchin repeatedly stated that he tanked Build Back Better because of concerns about inflation, and only the most brainwashed Fox News viewer will believe that Manchin no longer cares about inflation and wants to pass “all-you-can-eat liberal spending.” It’s gotten so bad for Republicans that they’ve resorted to quoting Bernie Sanders, who suggested the bill would have a “minimal impact on inflation.” As if people with their own bank accounts listen to Bernie. (I kid! I kid!)
No, seriously, they’re asking their voters to trust the socialist instead of the coal baron with his own house boat. The average right-wing brain can only take so much abuse.
It is hilarious to see Republicans and right-wing media slam the “Manchin bill” as promoting reckless spending. Joe Manchin just isn’t a name anyone associates with woke socialism. This is hardly Liz Warren “eat-the-rich” legislation.
Sunday, Foghorn Leghorn cosplayer Sen. John Kennedy from Louisiana trash-talked his Senate colleague with the old “I’m not saying ...” trick.
\u201cJohn Kennedy says that Joe Manchin is going to make people sleep in tents behind Whataburgers.\u201d— Ron Filipkowski \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\udde6 (@Ron Filipkowski \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\udde6) 1659905306
KENNEDY: I’m not saying that Senator Manchin intentionally wants to hurt people.
Of course not!
KENNEDY: I’m not saying that he intentionally wants to have even more people living in a tent behind Whataburger. But that’s gonna be the result of this bill.
Louisianans working full-time are still struggling to find affordable housing, and this asshole almost laughed while making a punchline out of real people’s suffering.
Turning Point USA founder Charlie Kirk, who’s rarely a model of stability, raved Monday that the “inflation reduction act” is actually a “dissident imprisonment act,” and that the 87,000 IRS agents will target "mom-and-pop restaurants, donors to MAGA candidates, people like you.” No, dude, they’re just going after tax cheats.
Anyway, back to McConnell’s (allegedly!) Kentucky-bourbon-fueled rant:
With straight faces, Democrats argued the damage from their first reckless taxing and spending spree was a good excuse to ram through another.
And Republicans spent all night and all day putting forward solutions to tackle those issues. But not one Senate Democrat would agree to take one dime out of their Green New Deal nonsense to cut inflation, fight crime, or secure the border.
The Republican amendments were a bunch of bullshit. Crime and the border are what Republicans obsess over when they have no real solutions during tough economic times. Senate Minority Whip John Thune admitted last week that they were throwing amendments at the wall to derail the process. He told The Hill, "Get as many votes on amendments that make it more difficult for Democrats to be for it in the end.”
Democrats held firm, voted down every shiny object, and passed the damn bill.
Democrats have proven over and over they simply do not care about middle-class families’ priorities. They have spent 18 months proving that. They just spent hundreds of billions of dollars to prove it again.
Oh, fuck you, McConnell. Republicans killed the IRA's insulin cap. You don’t give a damn about struggling Americans. Republican ghouls have called universal childcare a commie plot. They’re obsessed with the “rising crime” in Democratic-controlled cities, while residents in Republican-controlled states slip further into poverty.
Human snot rag Stephen Miller had the gall to suggest these amendments were a good-faith effort to address the contrived “border crisis."
\u201cStephen Miller said Democratic Senators this morning had no compassion for migrants at the border: \u201cHave they no conscience? Have they no soul? People are suffering. This is misery and anguish we\u2019ve never seen before.\u201d\u201d— Ron Filipkowski \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\udde6 (@Ron Filipkowski \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\udde6) 1659892380
MILLER: Modern-day slavery is playing out on our border. The drugs that are coming through are laying waste to our cities and towns. Parents are weeping over the bodies of their children. And Senate Republicans are trying to offer a handful of modest, common-sense amendments to end the death and destruction, and Mark Kelly and the rest of the Senate Democrats are voting them down? Have they no conscience? Have they no soul? People are suffering. This is misery and anguish on a scale we have never seen before.
They really should’ve perfected Miller’s emotion chip before he tried to sell that monologue. Miller, by the way, was the architect of Donald Trump’s grotesque family separation policy that was intentionally designed to torture desperate immigrants.
And we repeat: Republicans were never going to vote for the IRA, even if it included their entire right-wing wish list.
Unfortunately for Republicans, who capitalize on human misery, US consumer inflation expectations for the coming years have fallen, partly due to a steady decrease in gas prices. The economy is improving, and the IRA is going to deliver results for all Americans. Joe Manchin sank their midterm battleship and they’re floating in their own flotsam.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He writes make believe for Cafe Nordo, an immersive theatre space in Seattle. Once, he wrote a novel called “Mahogany Slade,” which you should read or at least buy. He's also on the board of the Portland Playhouse theatre. His son describes him as a “play typer guy."