A wide variety of House Republicans, especially freshmen in competitive districts, heard from their constituents over the recent two-week break, and discovered that voters aren’t impressed with the GOP plan to end Medicare. Yesterday, they gathered to deliver a message to Democrats: Stop making us look bad by telling the public about our agenda.
A group of House Republican freshmen, tired of getting hammered on Medicare, is leading a fresh protest against Democrats’ tactics on the senior citizen health care program.
Rep. Adam Kinzinger sent a letter to the White House Tuesday signed by 41 of his classmates “calling on President Obama to end the ‘MediSCARE’ tactics,” according to a release today.
This is amusing for a couple of reasons. The first is that the whining about “scare tactics” continues to be foolish. If Dems were lying and engaging in demagoguery, then Republicans would be right to call them on it. But the criticism of the GOP plan from Democrats and the left has been accurate — the point is to simply let Americans know what Republicans intend to do.
If the GOP’s Medicare proposal is frightening the public, the problem isn’t with Democratic rhetoric; it’s with the Republican plan.
But the other angle to keep in mind is recent history. In 2010 — just last year — many of these same freshmen managed to get elected by using wildly misleading attack ads accusing Democrats of hurting seniors and “cutting” Medicare.
In other words, those who suddenly find themselves deeply troubled by “MediSCARE tactics” are in Congress today because of “MediSCARE tactics.”
This was not entirely lost on the GOP freshmen at yesterday’s press conference, and some of the Republicans in attendance said they want to “wipe the slate clean” and “hit the reset button” now that they’re in office.
Well, isn’t that convenient.
It’s as if Republicans hit Democrats with a baseball bat, over and over again, for about a year. Now that Dems, bloodied and bruised, have managed to get their hands on a bat, they’re hearing Republicans proclaim, “Let’s all agree that hitting people with bats is wrong.”
Nevertheless, the GOP whining on this suggests the Democratic message — which, unlike the GOP’s attack ads from last year, happens to be accurate — is causing some real headaches for the Republican Party.