When Bill Clinton's deficit reduction package came up for a vote in 1993, it did not receive a single Republican vote in either the House or the Senate. Last week, David Waldman took the time to compile a broad sampling of Republican quotes in opposition to the package. They predicted a "Democrat-machine recession" and called it a "deadly virus" that would "put the economy in the gutter". Predictably, they were dead wrong. As we all know, this package succeeded in balancing the budget, and ushered in perhaps the greatest decade of prosperity in American history.
Another Democratic President, another round of hilarious GOP theater. Once again, a new Democratic President has to clean up the mess of his irresponsible Republican predecessors. Once again, Republicans oppose the President's plan en masse. As Think Progress and others have noted, dozens of Congressional Republicans who voted against the package are trying to take credit for it in their districts now that it has passed.
I'm not surprised Congressional Republicans are playing the same silly games they were playing 16 years ago. Playing silly games while Democrats do the work of Governing is what Republicans do. But it seems like some of these folks would learn from their past mistakes. No such luck. All 50 Republican Senators voted against the Clinton plan in 1993. Of these 50, 11 are still United States Senators. 10 of these 11 voted against Obama's economic recovery package. Here are the 10 big winners:
Shelby (D-AL, note: Shelby was supposedly a Democrat at the time. He switched parties shortly thereafter.)
These people have literally been fighting for the same failed economic theories for more than 16 years. The ability to ignore all evidence indicating that tax cuts alone can solve of our economic problems was an impressive feat, but these 10 brave foot soldiers of conservatism were up to the task. Notably, the list includes both the most powerful Republican Senator, Mitch McConnell, and the most recent GOP Presidential candidate, John McCain.
Voters in Utah, Missouri, Mississippi, New Mexico, Iowa, New Hampshire, Utah, Texas, Arizona, Kentucky and Alabama have sent each of these Senators back to Washington at least twice since they voted the wrong way on the crucially important Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993. Fortunately, many of these voters will have the opportunity to make up for past mistakes in 2010. Of the 10 dead-enders listed above, two are retiring (Gregg and Bond) and four are up for re-election (Shelby, McCain, Grassley and Bennett). All eyes on you: Alabama, Arizona, Iowa and Utah. Will you give someone who might actually have a clue what they are talking about a chance to represent your state in the United States Senate or will you send the same fool who has been repeatedly wrong on the biggest economic votes they are faced with?