David Brooks is very upset at all those recalcitrant Republicans elected in 2010.
“What’s going on in the House, and a bit in the Senate, too, is what you might call the rise of Ted Cruz-ism,” Brooks said. “And Ted Cruz, the senator from Canada through Texas, is basically not a legislator in the normal sense, doesn’t have an idea that he’s going to Congress to create coalitions, make alliances, and he is going to pass a lot of legislation. He’s going in more as a media-protest person. And a lot of the House Republicans are in the same mode. They’re not normal members of Congress. They’re not legislators. They want to stop things. And so they’re just being — they just want to obstruct.”
Two things on this:
- David Brooks is apparently looking to build street cred among the Birther crowd. "Senator from Canada?" What's next, arguing that the Moon landings were faked and that there are aliens on ice in Warehouse 23?
- ...Yes, in fact, a critical number of Republicans in Congress "want to obstruct." And there's a reason for that. Let me show you a graph from 2011:
That graph shows budget deficits, as of 2011. As you can plainly see, in 2009 our annual deficit went through the floor and (screaming) into the dark abyss beneath. Not coincidentally, this was the first year where the Democrats had complete and utter control over the spending process, which they used to waste quite a lot of the taxpayers money to no good end. The reaction to this was to put in enough Republican legislators in 2010 to stop more of that from happening. Obstructionism is the idea, in other words. Obstructionism has forced federal spending to verrrry slllooowllly stop advancing; obstructionism might even - Shock! Surprise! - get federal spending back to the pre-'stimulus' baseline*.
So, yeah, Cruz and House Republicans are being obstructionists. It's just that they're firmly in the mainstream of Republican and conservative opinion on the subject, and David Brooks is not.
Moe Lane (crosspost)
PS: If you ever wondered whether killing earmarks was a mitzvah, wonder no more. Brooks, again:
"...a lot of these people just are not interested in the committee assignments, the normal leverage the leadership has, in part because the earmarks are gone, some of the spending favors."
Translation: earmarks were potent bribes. Which. They. Were.
PPS: Brooks apparently also hates Heritage with the mildly warm irritation of a thousand tepid suns. Personally, I'd take that as a compliment and put his non-endorsement on Heritage's front page, but that's just me.
*And don't think that this isn't a victory; Harry Reid has been fighting like heck to get the supposed 'emergency' spending from 2009 to be made part of the new baseline. That's why we didn't have a budget for so long.