Playing the blame game

In April, House Democrats “celebrated” the 100th day of the new Republican rule in the chamber. Most notably, Dems emphasized the fact that the GOP, despite a year of campaign promises, haven’t even considered any jobs bills, with Republicans instead preferring to waste time on pointless gamesmanship and culture war crusades.

As if to say, “Oh yeah?” House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) turned to Twitter to respond to the Democratic argument.

And here we are six weeks later.

Cantor said that “everything seems to be going in the wrong direction,” but denied that Republicans deserve a share of the blame for the stagnant economic recovery.

Well, Eric, blame is a tricky thing, isn’t it?

Even in April, Cantor’s argument was foolish. Indeed, by Cantor’s reasoning, job growth should be impossible. How can all of these jobs be created in the midst of Obama-induced uncertainty? And with crushing tax rates so high? And a massive debt? And with pesky regulations stifling the engines of ingenuity?

We were apparently supposed to believe that Republicans’ mere presence in the House of Representatives is enough to overcome these burdensome hurdles.

That is, until the jobs picture deteriorates, at which point, Republicans bear no responsibility whatsoever.

Heads Cantor wins; tails Dems lose.

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Steve Benen

Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.