Political Harakiri

Harakiri is the Japanese form of honorable suicide.  In the Samurai Bushido it is seen as more honorable to kill ones’ self by slitting open their stomach and bleeding to death than to allow yourself to be captured by the enemy.  It’s part of the honor code.  It never really made a whole lot of sense, but then again, neither did the vote on Paul Ryan’s budget.

The vote in the Senate was 57-40.  Five Republicans broke rank and voted against the bill.  Those who supported it took to the Senate floor to address the body and talk about all of the things they didn’t like about the bill then promptly proceeded to vote for it.  What’s really crazy about this is and the part that really baffles me is why you would do this on the day after a special election was won by the opposition party thanks wholly to the policy mistakes that were a large part of the bill they voted for.

Republicans knew the risks, Paul Ryan knew the risks, GOP strategists knew the risks so why did they vote yes for this thing?  The entire chamber voted unanimously against the President’s budget proposal, if you think the Ryan plan needs work, why not say so by voting ‘no?’  That’s what Rand Paul did.  He didn’t think the plan went far enough so he voted against it.  Simple enough, right?  Republican orthodoxy is often a question of winning and at the very least, not losing.  Mitch McConnell famously said that his only goal over the course of President Obama’s tenure in office would be to destroy his agenda.  Is Mitch McConnell adopting the Charlie Sheen defense?  Does he think he’s winning even though it’s obvious to all rational human being that he is losing?

I’m not sure what the rationale was for this or what Republicans thought they were going to get out of this bill.  It had absolutely no chance of being passed.  There was no chance it would become law.  It’s almost like they grabbed the knife and started cutting to avoid the shame of losing a philosophical battle with people they view as being ‘dishonorable.’  If that’s the case, then maybe they need to stop reading books about the samurai and start reading books about cooperation and team-building because a compromise bill would make a lot more sense right now.


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