Principled supporters of limited government

Dear Bieber (via Atrios):

Under a GOP-backed bill expected to sail through the House of Representatives, the Internal Revenue Service would be forced to police how Americans have paid for their abortions. To ensure that taxpayers complied with the law, IRS agents would have to investigate whether certain terminated pregnancies were the result of rape or incest. And one tax expert says that the measure could even lead to questions on tax forms: Have you had an abortion? Did you keep your receipt?

In testimony to a House taxation subcommittee on Wednesday, Thomas Barthold, the chief of staff of the nonpartisan Joint Tax Committee, confirmed that one consequence of the Republicans’ “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act” would be to turn IRS agents into abortion cops—that is, during an audit, they’d have to detemine, from evidence provided by the taxpayer, whether any tax benefit had been inappropriately used to pay for an abortion.

You know the drill on the politics of reproductive rights: most voters support a woman’s right to choose, but those who oppose it are much more likely to be one issue voters. Most anti-choice legislation focuses on fucking with poor people who vote Democrat anyway, so as not to alienate more middle-class and upper-class women (who are often strongly pro-choice but sometimes vote Republican anyway). I have to wonder at what point all this bullshit turns a lot of middle-class and upper-class women into single issue pro-choice voters. All this crap will stop as soon as that happens, but it will continue unabated until it does.






64 replies
  1. 1
    singfoom says:

    Jesus. Christ. On. A. Cracker.

    Is it wrong to hope that heads explode from the cognitive dissonance?

    Again, they show their true colors. Limited government means “Government that doesn’t bother me, but bothers everyone I don’t like, that might be having fun, or sex.”

    Fuck.

  2. 2
    R-Jud says:

    “We will focus like a laser on your panties, bitches.”

  3. 3
    Bulworth says:

    I don’t think this will work. We’re broke. Our country. Our government. We’re broke. Everyone says so. And a broke countrygovernment obviously can’t sic the IRS police on womenz who get abortions.

  4. 4
    burnspbesq says:

    Great. Just great. Create incentives for people to lie to the IRS. Pretty soon you’re Italy, where tax evasion (not football) is the national sport.

    This is off-the-charts crazy and stupid. In other words, exactly what one should expect from the Republican Party.

  5. 5
    kmg says:

    fuck atrios. a couple years ago he spent several posts slamming mother jones for an article he didn’t approve of, basically trying to discredit the entire site. now he’s fucking linking to them

  6. 6
    danimal says:

    The day abortion questions are asked on IRS tax forms is most likely the day the zealots lose middle America. We should help them accomplish their goal.

  7. 7
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Damn, when health care coverage was tied to tax penalties, it was tyranny.

  8. 8
    Egypt Steve says:

    Where are the glibertarian IRS paranoiacs on this one?

  9. 9
    burnspbesq says:

    One gets the idea that Boehner has decided to let the crazies in his caucus do whatever they want, on the theory that none of it will get through the Senate and he gets to pander to the Republican base with no adverse consequences and no accountability.

    It’s halfway tempting to suggest that Reid should call his bluff and let the occasional piece of legislation get through the Senate, so that Obama can be seen wielding his veto pen to protect the American people from these nutbags. But there are probably ways that could go wrong, that I haven’t thought of.

  10. 10
    Wally Ballou says:

    I have to wonder at what point all this bullshit turns a lot of middle-class and upper-class women into single issue pro-choice voters.

    Since middle-class and upper-class women know they’ll always be able to get their abortions regardless, how ’bout never?

  11. 11
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    Since money is fungible, any money used by a person who who had an abortion and received any kind of government benefit, including the Making Work Pay Credit or a mortgage deduction, could be found to have used that money for the abortion.

  12. 12
    burnspbesq says:

    @Egypt Steve:

    Grover Norquist wants to drown the IRS in a bathtub full of the blood of women who die from botched back-alley abortions.

  13. 13
    Mary Jane says:

    I’ve finally realized we will never see peak wingnut.

  14. 14
    kay says:

    Based solely on my (admittedly limited) conversations, very young women are the people paying attention to this.

    I think that makes sense, because if you’re 19, 20, 21 or thereabouts, you have not seen a conservative House majority in action on an anti-choice tear, as a politically aware adult. Their experience of Congress is limited: a Democratic majority.

    To the rest of us, it’s “Oh. This again.” Predictable. I knew there wasn’t going to be any “social issues truce”. There never is.

  15. 15
    Pococurante says:

    @Wally Ballou:

    how ‘bout never?

    Exactly. A characteristic of straight-ticket GOP voters is that it’s always someone else who bears the consequences. And if they do find themselves on the sharp end of their own spear, it’s the other party’s fault.

  16. 16
    burnspbesq says:

    Just took a quick look at the statutory language. As I read it, it’s broad enough to deny EITC to any woman who is otherwise eligible, but who has an abortion during the taxable year, regardless of how that abortion is paid for.

    I think this is probably unconstitutional under the current state of the law, but I wouldn’t want to bet a car payment against the current Supreme Court finding a way to distinguish all of those cases.

  17. 17
    Mike in NC says:

    Under a GOP-backed bill expected to sail through the House of Representatives, the Internal Revenue Service would be forced to police how Americans have paid for their abortions.

    Jobs, jobs, jobs!

  18. 18
    burnspbesq says:

    @Mike in NC:

    Jobs? Not hardly. Have you seen what these morans want to do to the IRS budget?

  19. 19
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:

    @Wally Ballou:

    Since middle-class and upper-class women know they’ll always be able to get their abortions regardless, how ‘bout never?

    Upper class women will always have that option, but the crazies are making it ever harder for middle class women to exercise their right to choice, while at the same time pursing policies that move the middle class downward economically, further restricting the ability of these women. So I think it’s more possible than you suspect.

    And as kay notes, there’s a couple generations of young female voters who will find this new, and appalling.

  20. 20
    ed says:

    One does really hope that this is a deal-breaker. Can we get people to ask potential GOP candidates if they would like the “Did you have an abortion?” question on the tax form? One would think it would put them in a tough spot, but wackier things have happened.

  21. 21
    jrg says:

    “No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act” would be to turn IRS agents into abortion cops—that is, during an audit, they’d have to determine, from evidence provided by the taxpayer, whether any tax benefit had been inappropriately used to pay for an abortion.

    So, they plan on using the IRS to interrogate everyone who got any tax benefit at all if they used the tax benefit to fund an abortion?

    Awesome. Let them do it. I guarantee that the use of the IRS for p*nty-sniffing purposes will backfire, big time.

  22. 22
    petorado says:

    Thanks to the Republicans for getting this nation’s priorities back in order. Glad to see they are taking the “Internal” part of Internal Revenue Service seriously. Bring on the speculums!

  23. 23
    JoeG says:

    what abt Federal Employees and Military Members…all our salaries are derived from federal taxes?

    I guess “no more fun for us”.

  24. 24
    The Political Nihilist Formerly Known as Kryptik says:

    If there’s one thing the Republicans will never be accused of (amongst everything and anything bad, apparently), it’s consistency.

    Seriously, these fuckers have demonized taxes and the IRS and are on their way to shitcanning just about every gov’t agency they can….unless they can use them to further enforce the national policy of treating women as broodmare for the state.

    Again, quoth Carlin: “If you’re pre-born, you’re fine, if you’re preschool, you’re FUCKED.”

    And what’s most upsetting isn’t how open they are about this shit now. It’s the fact that they have a very good chance of fucking succeeding.

  25. 25
    WereBear says:

    @kay: I think that makes sense, because if you’re 19, 20, 21 or thereabouts, you have not seen a conservative House majority in action on an anti-choice tear, as a politically aware adult. Their experience of Congress is limited: a Democratic majority.

    I am kinda banking on the backlash potential of that generation; who take what they have for granted and were not yet aware of how much the Republicans wish to wrest from them.

  26. 26

    What, are we surprised that they would pull this type of horse-puckey?

    C’mon, people–this is exactly what they’ve been for, and they’ve been saying it for years! And now that they got in control due to the 2010 elections (hey! Thanks so much to all of you who wanted to “sit it out” because you wanted to send Obama and the Dems a lesson! Mission accomplished!!) this is what they’re going to do.

    Do not be surprised at the actions of the Repubs in Congress and at the state and local levels. This is who they really are. The mask has fallen away.

    …But, if we keep going on and on about how the Democrats and Obama are just as bad, well, look for even worse in 2013.

    Just sayin’….

  27. 27
    kindness says:

    Republicans are doing their best to drive moderates from their party. I know some still live there but I don’t understand why some of them still are voting for these people. Nostalgia? I don’t have a clue.

    Here in California, Jerry Brown is doing his best to seek the middle. He’s getting rave review (even from Republicans) but now the big deal is that outside groups are pressuring the Republicans not to make any deal with Jerry, even (especially since they expect they would lose) allowing the states voters to continue to have two taxes continued that were scheduled to expire as part of the deal.

    At what point will ‘reasonable people’ see that the values the party has are not the values they say they have ie-letting individuals decide things, less intrusion into our decisions & lives, fiscal responsibility)?

    The Teabaggers….OK, they don’t question anything their supreme leaders tell them. They are and prefer to be sheeple. But what about the rest of these middle folks? What is it going to take for them to see that the Democratic party isn’t the boogey men Karl Rove et al says they are and that Republicans really only want government control over their wombs and to allow the rich to have what ever they want. What is it going to take?

  28. 28
    The Political Nihilist Formerly Known as Kryptik says:

    @Marc McKenzie:

    It’s not that they’re trying, it’s just how baldly hypocritical and blatantly open about this shit. It honestly feels like they just don’t give a shit and want to raze everything because they know they can very well get away with it.

    And with Dems and Obama, it’s not that they’re just as bad. It’s that they’re bad enough to let the GOP get away with it. Not to mention the public will probably fucking cheer anyways because it pisses those goddamned dirty Hippies and Filthy America-Hating Libz off. I mean, that’s how everything works now it seems. Punch a hippie, win a vote.

  29. 29
    Suffern ACE says:

    So how exactly is the IRS going to determine who has or hasn’t had an abortion. Do they go through clinic records or something? Are you sure this is targeting household filers and not, say, non-profit planned parenthood clinics and hospitals?

  30. 30
    FormerSwingVoter says:

    You know the drill on the politics of reproductive rights: most voters support a woman’s right to choose, but those who oppose it are much more likely to be one issue voters.

    For what its worth, this is a little untrue, when you look at polls that are a little more granular. The pro-choice crowd has a slight advantage overall. If you ask about the first trimester specifically, though, you get a 60-30 split for choice. If you ask about the second trimester specifically, you get a 60-30 pro-life split.

  31. 31
    Vibrant Pantload, fka Studly Pantload says:

    Woohoo – Catch-22 IRS audits for everyone (men need not apply)!

    “Have you had an abortion?”

    “No, I haven’t.”

    “And when was this?”

    “What?”

    “If you haven’t had an abortion, when, specifically, did you not have it?”

    “I haven’t had an abortion – never.”

    “So, you’ve had an abortion?”

    “No!”

    “I’m going to need to see your receipt showing you haven’t had this abortion.”

    Crack-smoking morans.

  32. 32
    Comrade DougJ says:

    @FormerSwingVoter:

    This receipt-collecting applies in the first trimester too.

  33. 33
    Ella in New Mexico says:

    So Michelle Bachman wants to get rid of the “19000 IRS Agents that will be employed to enforce Obama care” because they intrude on our civil rights?

    How does this square up with that?

    Dumbasses, they don’t even talk to each other so they can keep their “values” straight when they’re making up this shit.

  34. 34
    The Political Nihilist Formerly Known as Kryptik says:

    @kindness:

    That’s just the thing. It’s going to take some GOP pols with actual convictions to cross over and publicly give their party the finger before voters wake up. It’s the great painful and successful irony of the McConnell strategy: the GOP’s own Monolithic Obstruction and policy of ‘Anything Dems’re for, we’re Agin’st!’ has the strange and counter-intuitive result of people thinking that the Dems and Obama are the real hyper partisan elitist know-nothings. After all, if they were REALLY bi-partisan, they’d have something the GOP would agree with, wouldn’t they? This along with hippie/lib hate is what won them the fucking ’10 elections.

    And they only seem to be doubling down further and further, meaning that we’re generally fucked.

    @Suffern ACE:

    The same way Georgia is gonna determine if a miscarriage was natural or not, I assume: Guilty until proven Innocent.

    @Ella in New Mexico:

    No, no, no, it works out perfectly, as long as you remember one key component to the GOP ideology: pregnancy means you forfeit all human rights.

  35. 35
    Gravenstone says:

    Under HIPAA, how can the IRS, or any other non-medically relevant entity even ask the question?

  36. 36
    Brachiator says:

    Every time I think these fools, these anti-choice zealots, have come up with the ultimate bit of intrusive nonsense, they surprise me again.

  37. 37
    Canadian Shoggoth says:

    Is this not another GOP 2fer? Opress woman AND help to delegitimize the IRS at the same time. Then in response to outcry over the overreach, “well I guess we’ll just have to abolish the IRS then”.

  38. 38
    bkny says:

    how much national coverage will this really get — i’m guessing not much. and what there is will be provided by privileged middle-aged white men.

  39. 39
    The Political Nihilist Formerly Known as Kryptik says:

    @bkny:

    Who will immediately tell us how necessary this is to avoid all those preggo leeches fleecing the government to avoid their god-given duty as a babytank. Not in such blunt words, of course, but…

  40. 40
    burnspbesq says:

    @Gravenstone:

    Because the IRS is generally allowed to inquire into anything that may shed some light on the correctness of a filed tax return. That’s the well-known (by tax lawyers) Powell standard (derived from a 1960s Supreme Court case).

    The HIPAA defense is probably a winner if litigated, but how many tax controversy specialists work for Legal Aid? And how likely is it that someone like me, who would love to take a challenge to this foolishness as a pro bono project, will get permission from the leadership of his or her law firm?

  41. 41
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    Women across America ought to package up their well-used ‘supplies’ from Aunt Flo’s monthly visit and send them off to their Republican representatives. Every month. They can argue that they are providing proof of no abortion and ask for a permission slip so they can skip the IRS womb auditor.

    I bet that will get some attention. :)

  42. 42
    Davis X. Machina says:

    @Gravenstone: One amendment, one vote, one problem gone.

  43. 43
    liberal says:

    @FormerSwingVoter:
    But what fraction think a woman should be able to get an abortion if she’s raped?

    The GOP platform, IIRC, thinks the fetus should be a 14th amendment person. In that case, no abortion for rape.

    The commercials write themselves. Don’t understand why the Dems don’t do it.

  44. 44
    liberal says:

    @FormerSwingVoter:
    And about second trimester, third trimester, etc: what if the polling question is changed to ask about e.g. a third trimester/late second trimester abortion for anencephaly?

  45. 45
    liberal says:

    @kindness:

    Republicans are doing their best to drive moderates from their party. I know some still live there but I don’t understand why some of them still are voting for these people. Nostalgia? I don’t have a clue.

    Probably just looking for their taxes to be lowered, like most of the other thugs.

    What is it going to take for [the Teabaggers] to see that the Democratic party isn’t the boogey men Karl Rove et al says they are and that Republicans really only want government control over their wombs and to allow the rich to have what ever they want. What is it going to take?

    Never going to happen. IMHO all Western democracies have a fraction of the pop which are incorrigibly right-wing. Only thing that can be done is to deligitimize and marginalize.

  46. 46
    El Cid says:

    Republicans are removing $600 million from the IRS’ budget specifically to make it impossible to go after unpaid taxes.

    The IRS’ pursuit of such takes in vastly more than it costs, so it’s actually gubmit revenue, which you’d think addresses the ‘revenue’ side of the budget.

    However, the IRS actually getting the taxes rich people and tax avoiders and businesses they’re supposed to pay is oppressive and theft.

    Every dollar the Internal Revenue Service spends for audits, liens and seizing property from tax cheats brings in more than $10, a rate of return so good the Obama administration wants to boost the agency’s budget.
    __
    House Republicans, seeing the heavy hand of a too-big government, beg to differ. They’ve already voted to cut the IRS budget by $600 million this year and want bigger cuts in 2012.
    __
    The IRS has dramatically increased its pursuit of tax cheats in the past decade: Audits are up, property liens are up and asset seizures are way up. President Barack Obama and Democrats in Congress see stepped up enforcement as a good way to narrow the nation’s staggering budget deficit without raising tax rates or cutting popular spending programs.
    __
    “It makes little sense to cut the agency that collects revenue,” said Rep. Jose Serrano of New York, the top Democrat on the House subcommittee that oversees the IRS budget.
    __
    IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman told the committee Tuesday that the $600 million cut in this year’s budget would result in the IRS collecting $4 billion less through tax enforcement programs. The Democrat-controlled Senate is unlikely to pass a budget cut that big. But given the political climate on Capitol Hill, Obama’s plan to increase IRS spending is unlikely to pass, either.
    __
    Obama has already increased the IRS budget by 10% since he took office, to nearly $12.5 billion. The president’s budget proposal for 2012 would increase IRS spending by an additional 9% — adding 5,100 employees.
    __
    Republicans, however, view the IRS as an ideal target in their promise to reduce government spending, in part because the agency will play a big role in implementing Obama’s new health care law. If the law survives court challenges, the IRS will administer tax credits for businesses that provide health insurance to employees, as well as credits to help individuals pay for coverage. The agency also is tasked with enforcing the mandate that most Americans buy health insurance, starting in 2014.

    The problem with this country and with all the jobs is that our government spends more than it takes in.

    That’s why we have to limit what it takes in.

    What the libruls and Keensens don’t understand, with regard to the US deficit, there is no such thing as a revenue side. That’s old bookkeeping.

    Nowadays we know that budget imbalance is solely caused by and can only be addressed by cutting social programs which Republicans don’t like. And also by cutting taxes and fees and getting rid of regulations.

  47. 47
    kay says:

    @WereBear:

    I am kinda banking on the backlash potential of that generation

    I think they better bank on each other :)

    I vote in every election, and I’m sure you do too.

    What was mentioned was Planned Parenthood clinics and Title X funding; they don’t know the name ‘Title X’ but they know what “family planning” means: a cut in funding to clinics that offer basic health care and access to contraceptives to uninsured women, or,”them”.

  48. 48
  49. 49
    liberal says:

    @The Political Nihilist Formerly Known as Kryptik:

    And with Dems and Obama, it’s not that they’re just as bad. It’s that they’re bad enough to let the GOP get away with it.

    This.

  50. 50

    […] Comrade DougJ at Balloon Juice, this says is perfectly: You know the drill on the politics of reproductive rights: most voters support a […]

  51. 51
    FormerSwingVoter says:

    Don’t get me wrong – what the Repubs are doing is horrible. I just don’t want people to presume everyone agrees with us 100% – overall, people favor choice in the first trimester, and abortions for medical reasons or rape or incest. People are a lot squishier on elective second-trimester ones.

    People are also very much against late-term abortions, but very much in favor of abortions for health reasons – not realizing that late-term abortions are only done for health reasons.

    We need to make sure that people know that Republicans are coming for all abortions. The ones when you’ve got a clump of cells four weeks in, the ones where its impossible for the child to be born, the ones where the mother’s likely to die, all of the ones that everyone supports. But to say that “most people support choice” is oversimplifying it.

    I could just be picking nits. I just don’t want liberals/progressives to fall into the trap of “everyone agrees with us!!1one” that so many conservatives take as gospel truth.

  52. 52
    Bill Arnold says:

    …but those who oppose it are much more likely to be one issue voters.

    For whatever it’s worth, there many people who are one-issue voters on the pro-choice side, in the sense that they will vote against any candidate who is endorsed by the Right to Life Party or who espouses strong anti-abortion-rights views. Ask around.

  53. 53
    Yutsano says:

    Sigh. Because I don’t have enough shit to do at work as it is. If anyone thinks I’m a lazy ebil gubmint worker, they can come do my job for one fucking day. It’d make their head spin, and I’m a compliance officer so this bullshit directly affects me.

  54. 54
    mds says:

    @FormerSwingVoter:

    If you ask about the first trimester specifically, though, you get a 60-30 split for choice. If you ask about the second trimester specifically, you get a 60-30 pro-life split.

    As liberal notes, this “pro-life” bit still usually comes with caveats about rape, incest, health of the pregnant woman, severe birth defects, etc, etc. So here’s an idea. How about about we compromise by laying out a legal framework that allows basically unrestricted access to abortion in the first trimester, with increasing restrictions as the fetus develops? We could call it Roe v. Wade.

  55. 55
    Brachiator says:

    @El Cid:

    Nowadays we know that budget imbalance is solely caused by and can only be addressed by cutting social programs which Republicans don’t like. And also by cutting taxes and fees and getting rid of regulations.

    But this is the thing. The GOP and especially the Tea Party People are convinced that government is too big and does too much. So they want to cut it back by cutting taxes. Here’s a recent proposal that will soon be put before the Congress:

    House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Rep. Dave Camp, R-Mich. took control of the tax-writing committee when Republicans won the mid-term congressional elections in 2010….He wants to cut U.S. tax rates for corporations and individuals to 25 percent. His proposal would also call for eliminating or reducing deductions and credits.

    Of course, the other side of this is that the GOP sees no contradiction in their feverish dreams for “limited government” and their mania for social control legislation that would police people’s conduct and insure patriotism and political conformity.

  56. 56
    burnspbesq says:

    @Yutsano:

    Not to mention that if this happens, some idiot in some campus will start browsing IDRS looking for the “abortion” indicator in celebrities’ accounts and selling the information to supermarket tabloids.

  57. 57
    burnspbesq says:

    @Brachiator:

    Actually, you could get a lot of tax policy geeks to line up and say that Camp’s proposal to reduce rates and broaden the base makes sense. The problem is that Camp is going to tie it to something that limits Federal tax revenue to some arbitrary, and far too low, percentage of GDP.

  58. 58
    Brachiator says:

    @burnspbesq:

    Actually, you could get a lot of tax policy geeks to line up and say that Camp’s proposal to reduce rates and broaden the base makes sense. The problem is that Camp is going to tie it to something that limits Federal tax revenue to some arbitrary, and far too low, percentage of GDP

    . Yeh. Good points. Camp claims that his proposal would be revenue neutral, but others (e.g., Sander M. Levin, D-Mich) claims that Camp’s plan would reduce tax revenues by $2 trillion over a decade.

    Rough and dirty, most of what I’ve seen from the GOP is less concerned about a functioning federal government, and is intent with starving the federal government, and squeezing the middle class while providing a comfortable cushion for the wealthy.

    The poor? They don’t care.

  59. 59

    @The Political Nihilist Formerly Known as Kryptik:

    “It’s not that they’re trying, it’s just how baldly hypocritical and blatantly open about this shit. It honestly feels like they just don’t give a shit and want to raze everything because they know they can very well get away with it.”

    Nice point, Kryptik. I agree. You also have to remember, though, that memories are short. Two years ago the worst American President in the last half-century left office with ratings lower than Hitler in Hell. He and his party dragged this country through the mud.

    Fast-forward two years later…and we’ve put the same party that did this back in charge of the House and in charge in places at the state and local level.

    As for your second point:

    “And with Dems and Obama, it’s not that they’re just as bad. It’s that they’re bad enough to let the GOP get away with it.”

    …I respectfully have to disagree. It still veers close to the “they’re all the same” meme. Trust me, I understand what you are saying, but remember the giant sea of s**t that Bush left us? Well…it’s gotta be cleaned up. And let’s not forget the role of the MSM in all of this. You can be angry (with valid reasons, I might add) at the Dems, but who should have been telling us about the Repubs’ machinations? Who should have been acting as a check on them? Well, the MSM should have been…but they chickened out. Better to talk about celebrity meltdowns and surface gloss instead of digging into the heart of the matter.

    Still, I gotta give you the gold star for a great response.

  60. 60

    @FormerSwingVoter:

    “We need to make sure that people know that Republicans are coming for all abortions. The ones when you’ve got a clump of cells four weeks in, the ones where its impossible for the child to be born, the ones where the mother’s likely to die, all of the ones that everyone supports. But to say that “most people support choice” is oversimplifying it.”

    This.

    Let’s get to it! It needs to be shouted from the damned mountaintops, as loudly and as clearly as possible!

  61. 61
    El Cid says:

    The GOP can make various tax cuts revenue neutral by calling them “revenue neutral”.

  62. 62
    The Political Nihilist Formerly Known as Kryptik says:

    @Marc McKenzie:

    The point I meant by ‘They’re bad enough to let the GOP get away with it’ isn’t necessarily saying they’re bad in the same way. It’s the fact that, as a whole, the Dems are caught between Blue Dogs who actively enable the GOP, and the the rest of the party that passively enables them through sheer ineptness. The latter is the most significant problem, where the party as a whole seems to be so utterly aimless and wobbly that they’re unable to mount a defense against a GOP that, by all rights, is throwing up gimmies and softballs.

    Yes, I realize too that the Dems generally have to work twice as hard to do anything because of the aforementioned love of Hippie Punching our country has and how abysmal our media is, but the party at this point feels just so shittily inept that they really do enable the GOP by letting them get away with their awful shit.

  63. 63
    Barb (formerly Gex) says:

    So basically, since they are insulated from the consequences of their Republican votes, they have no problem destroying access to medical care for others. And the only way we can get them to change their mind is for them to have to pay the consequences. But Republicans never have to face the consequences of their policies. So this will never fucking change.

  64. 64
    Wolfdaughter says:

    Procurante:

    Exactly. A characteristic of straight-ticket GOP voters is that it’s always someone else who bears the consequences. And if they do find themselves on the sharp end of their own spear, it’s the other party’s fault.

    They also think it’s ok for them but not those “others”. If a conservative Republican woman has an abortion, it’s necessary, but the other women “want to fit into their prom dresses”, or other frivolous reasons. While at the same time they demonize single mothers who collect welfare, claiming that they deliberately have babies to increase their monthly payments. Basically, they have no respect for most people, and I can’t help but believe that they’re projecting their own inadequacies on others. I’m glad I don’t have to inhabit the fear-ridden fever swamp of many conservatives’ minds.

    Brachiator:

    Rough and dirty, most of what I’ve seen from the GOP is less concerned about a functioning federal government, and is intent with starving the federal government, and squeezing the middle class while providing a comfortable cushion for the wealthy.

    Plus they can garner pander points with their base. “Look, we said we’d cut the budget, and we did!” Even though it’s nickel-and-diming and ignoring the elephant (heh) in the room, the “Defense” budget.

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  1. […] Comrade DougJ at Balloon Juice, this says is perfectly: You know the drill on the politics of reproductive rights: most voters support a […]

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