WHAT IS CHUCK GRASSLEY TALKING ABOUT?…. In his weekly address, President Obama said it’s “time to deliver” health care reform to the nation. It didn’t seem like an especially controversial thing to say — deliberations are underway, and the president was signaling his intention not to let the opportunity slip away.
For reasons that make no sense at all, one prominent Republican senator found Obama’s comments about his commitment to reform deeply insulting.
That didn’t sit well with the Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, the top Republican on the Finance Committee, which has been laboring to come up with a health care bill that Democrats and Republicans can support.
Grassley is a frequent user of Twitter … and he directed two angry “tweets” Sunday morning at Obama. The president was wrapping up an overseas trip with some time in Paris with his family.
Grassley’s first tweet: “Pres Obama you got nerve while u sightseeing in Paris to tell us ‘time to deliver’ on health care. We still on skedul/even workinWKEND.”
A short time later: “Pres Obama while u sightseeing in Paris u said ‘time to delivr on healthcare’ When you are a ‘hammer’ u think evrything is NAIL I’m no NAIL.”
When I first heard about the tweets, I’d assumed an overeager Grassley intern had gotten ahold on the senator’s Blackberry and typed a couple of ridiculous messages without Grassley’s knowledge. Alas, the senator’s office later confirmed to the AP that Grassley actually tweeted these messages himself.
Have I mentioned that Grassley is the leading Republican senator working with Senate Democrats on a bipartisan reform package?
Reading his angry messages, I’m still not sure what it is the Iowa Republican is so upset about. That the First Family is “sightseeing in Paris,” which he mentioned twice? That the president wants to see a bill passed this year? That Grassley doesn’t want to be a “nail”?
Indeed, the Maslow’s hammer axiom doesn’t apply here at all. In this metaphor, what is it, exactly, that Grassley thinks is the hammer? Why does he feel like a nail?
If a general “it’s time to deliver” message from the president is enough to send the leading Republican negotiator into sputtering and incoherent Twitter rage, we can probably rule out the prospects of some kind of bipartisan compromise. Grassley is apparently so touchy, who knows what’ll happen if, God forbid, Obama says something about “rolling up our sleeves” or “getting down to business.”