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Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Ryan on Transparency

This new Washington Way isn't open debate broadcast on C-SPAN; it's closed-door, backroom deals. The Washington Way doesn't seek input from both sides of the issue; it muscles through bills on strict one-party votes. And the Washington Way isn't interested in honest up-or-down votes on transformational programs. It rigs the process to produce the outcome it desires through any means necessary. The ends justify the means. Bend the Constitution to keep up with the change.
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The initial goal was to pass the bill before the August recess. But when that deadline wasn't met, tens of thousands of Americans got the opportunity to express their opposition to the bill when members went back to their districts for town hall meetings. Suddenly, news reports and YouTube were full of videos of angry citizens confronting often dazed the defensive members of Congress.  Immediately after that, the president and a small number of advisers and Democratic leaders retreated behind closed doors to write their health-care bill.  They didn't like what they were hearing from Americans, so they told us, in no uncertain terms to shut up and sit down. 
Robert Pear reports at The New York Times:
It was “find the Affordable Care Act replacement” day on Thursday as publicity-seeking Democrats — and one frustrated Republican — scampered through Capitol corridors, hunting for an elusive copy of a bill that Republican leaders have withheld from the public as they search for party unity.

Just a week before two powerful House committees plan to vote on the measure, opponents spent hours making the point that almost no one has actually seen legislation that would affect the lives and pocketbooks of millions of Americans.

“The Republicans have played hide-and-seek with us,” said Representative Lloyd Doggett, Democrat of Texas.

Speaker Paul D. Ryan of Wisconsin said party leaders were determined to plow ahead with repeal legislation, despite lingering disagreements among Republicans and outright opposition from Democrats.