While much has been written about the “tea party” candidate running on an anti-health care platform and when winning cant wait to get their very own taxpayer funded Cadillac health care. Some examples of this are
here, here and here. We have even been ridiculed about it by the water carrying ideologues on the right who do not think that the republicans should have to live in the world that they advocate. I would be writing straight through to 2012 if I listed every example of republican/tea party hypocrisy just in the two months since the election.
That being said it as refreshing that there is an actual “tea party”(can we get them a new name please, because that one makes me cringe) who is practicing what he preached(somewhat). In this profile of new congressman Joe Walsh. Not this joe walsh, but this Joe Walsh. As the article states the rogue representative-elect Walsh is (somewhat)sticking to his principles.
Mr. Walsh, 48, will get about $1.4 million annually to run his operation and plans as many as three district branches. He’ll sleep in his office in Washington, while his family stays here in McHenry. And get this: he’s turned down the usual congressional health care, pension and retirement packages.
“I don’t think congressmen should get pensions or cushy health care plans,” he said. His wife is not exhilarated with the latter decision; she has a pre-existing medical condition and is now forced to hunt for a plan.
While he is content to let his wife twist in the wind and “hunt for a health care plan” that will take her, the lure of big money seems too much for him to resist. In true Founding Fathers tradition, the “small government, man of the people” walsh’s first hire was a financial services lobbyist as his chief of staff(
Here is some more words of ‘wisdom” from Mr. Walsh:
One of the first votes he’ll confront is on raising the federal debt ceiling. Many economists warn that voting down an increase would be a mistake, and the House Republican leadership agrees. Mr. Walsh will vote against it. “On principle and policy, the leadership is wrong,” he said. “This is a teachable moment on my part.” (pp: Mr. Walsh could not be more correct here, this will be a very teachable moment).
What is government’s role? “Protect my borders, protect Americans on their streets, keep our highways paved and our environment clean, defend us overseas and help those who can’t help themselves,” he said.
So he does support federal aid to those too sick or destitute to find work. He added, “But we’ve asked government to take care of too many in the middle class, not those who need it the most.”
When I broached reaching across the political aisle and compromising to get things done, he replied, “Now is not the time.”
But doesn’t history suggest you can win in anger but not govern that way?
“No!” he said immediately. “If you put that anger away, you lose that standing. If you believe Obamacare will destroy health care, that’s a battle to join.”
And when it comes to dogmatism potentially imperiling self-preservation, the state’s biggest Election Day surprise said, and perhaps believably so, “I’m going to D.C. absolutely prepared to lose in two years.”
Let us hope he is correct!!