If you are a Republican member of Congress with a conscience, you've got a long, hard road these days. Every Republican in Congress has been greatly pressured to vote against the stimulus package with the threat of retribution against those who dare disobey the Republican leadership.
With a couple of exceptions, most every Repug fell in line.
These nogoodnik Repugnicans are not just pressuring members of Congress. They're pressuring every Republican in the country to get on their negative, debilitating bandwagon.
For example, Charlie Crist, governor of Florida, has been a strong supporter of the stimulus bill. Crist knows Florida and the residents of Florida need help. Crist wants every dime he can get out of the stimulus bill to shore up Florida's faltering economy, educational system, and healthcare related services.
While I have strong disagreements with Crist on a number of issues, in this case I applaud his vision and his fortitude. Fortitude because the national Repugs are all over his case, claiming that he's hurting the party and, more damaging to Crist personally, he's hurting his chances at future political success.
Alex Castellanos whined, "I don't think he's helped any national Republican ambitions he may have by stepping up to the plate and batting for the other team...."
Batting for the other team? What the hell is wrong with these Republican assholes? I thought that when it came to the welfare of the country we were supposed to be on the same team? This is not a game! The country is going down the proverbial tubes and these worthless Republicans are talking about the disaster as if it were a game!
Castellanos went on: "There's a difference between working in a bipartisan way for the common good and switching sides and putting on the other team's jersey. At the one moment when we've finally found our voice and remember who we are as Republicans, Charlie Crist forgets. It's stunning."
No, it isn't. What's stunning is the depths of degradation to which the Republican Party has sunk! Castellanos and others of his ilk know nothing of "working in a bipartisan way for the common good." All they know is how to disrupt and deny and lie and cheat.
And then, to threaten the governor of Florida with future punishment for not being a member of the "team"?
Mel Martinez, supposedly a friend of Crist, but a right wingnut Cuban who's still fighting Castro, and Communism and, oh yeah, socialism, too, criticized the Florida governor by implying he doesn't know what he's doing or what he's talking about.
None of this is surprising, of course. The Republican Party in this country, if it ever had any values, lost them long ago. The Republican Party is, above all, about power -- gaining it and keeping it. The Republican Party, at this moment, has shown the people of the United States, they don't give a damn about the mess they created.
Crist, at least, seems to care a little.