Saturday, March 25, 2017

House Divided

 The Freedom Caucus, by making the thoroughly odious the enemy of the merely malevolent, is said to have nailed shut the coffin of Ryancare.  Impressively, the renegade Republicans stayed ideologically pure, resisting the temptation to give the rich a major tax cut and screw over millions of poorer folk who benefit from the expansion of Medicaid.  One wonders if the Koch brothers and Grover Norquist regret financing Tea Party primary challenges against more "moderate" Republicans.  (John Boehner, deposed by those same ideologues, must be smirking pretty hard today.)

In truth, though, the Ryan bill would have had a hard time even without the Republican schism.  It was pure Reaganomics, and despite compulsory genuflection at the shrine of Saint Ronnie, there are Republicans who understand it's not the 1980s anymore — and everyone can see that Donald is a far cry from Ronald.

Well, on to tax reform!  Sadly for Ryan, he was counting on the tax cuts from the failed health bill to make the numbers look vaguely reasonable in his tax package.  There's also quite a bit of division among his party's corporate contributors over those ideas for boosting exports and making imports more expensive.  There could be more chaos on the Hill forthwith.

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