House Republicans vote unanimously for depression

Fine. Let’s undo all those “compromises” in conference, and pass a Democratic bill with Democratic votes.

Yep. Not a single vote for stimulus from the Republican side of the aisle.

Hey! Whatever floats their boat.


1. Democrats should never let the voters forget this. Republicans chose the opportunity to give an overwhelmingly popular new President the finger over the opportunity to work together to drag the economy out of the hole their policies left it in. In particular, those running in 2010 against the remaining Republicans from Blue districts should wrap this vote around the incumbents’ next; when push came to shove, they put party first, country last.

2. When the House and Senate bills go to conference, some of the concessions made in the name of bipartisanship &#8212 in particular some of the inequitable and uneconomic tax cuts &#8212 should be taken out, and replaced by, e.g., a payroll-tax holiday for employees. And we should be sure to put the birth control funds back into the bill, Republican politicians, their corporate paymasters, and their fundamentalist voters need to be taught the lesson that obstructionism has a price.

McConnell has already announced that he won’t filibuster the stimulus package. So we don’t need any Republican votes in the Senate, either. Having tried it the bipartisan way, let’s make this a Democratic bill and pass it with Democratic votes.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: