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Monday, October 14, 2013

Irony and Hypocrisy

Last week, in one of his typically insightful rants, Jon Stewart excoriated the Republicans for--brace yourself!--their hypocrisy in attempting to shift the blame for the continuing governmental shutdown onto President Obama, claiming that it is his unwillingness to negotiate that is unnecessarily prolonging the stalemate. 
Essentially, he points out that if Republicans want to claim that they are standing on principle and protecting Americans from what they sincerely believe to be catastrophically misguided legislation (the Affordable Care Act), then that's fine...but they have to "own it"--and willingly accept whatever consequences they suffer in the court of public opinion.  And while I always revel in an explication of GOP hypocrisy, I was struck yesterday by the irony of the Republicans' situation.

Because if the Cruz-controlled GOP hadn't shut down the government over Obamacare, they could right now be making tremendous political hay over the utter SNAFU that has thus far characterized the rollout of the Affordable Care Act.  An article in yesterday's Times catalogued the ongoing technical problems that have plagued the online portal where people could go to get information and ultimately to sign up for the insurance exchanges that are the centerpiece of the ACA.  While administration officials are hopeful that the glitches will be fixed soon, Republicans have cost themselves an opportunity for a "told-you-so" to end all "told-you-so's."  Because even if they could find people in the general public--i.e., those who haven't drunk the Tea-Party brewed Kool Aid--to listen to another one of their strident denunciations of this "existential threat to the nation," all President Obama would have to do is turn around and say that, yes, there are technical problems with the ACA website, but these problems could be fixed a lot faster if, y'know, THE REPUBLICANS HADN'T SHUT DOWN THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT!

The modern Republican Party: Hoist on their own petard since 2009!

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