A Curious Bystander

Megan Chrisler, Features Editor

Friday, Sept. 27, is the set date for a House vote on a spending bill, in which the Republicans are willingly letting the government have the funds that it wants. However, it still includes a defunding of Obamacare, the whole reason for the aforementioned compromise. They are still threatening to shut down the government if Obamacare’s death is not approved.

The Democrat-controlled Senate has already promised to kill the proposed bill and send back another proposal with the funding of Obamacare in it. Even if they sent it on to the White House, the administration has said that President Barack Obama will definitely veto it.

This is perhaps a silly thought, but I can’t help but be reminded of a certain super villain’s line, when he says something to the effect of, “This is what happens when an unstoppable force meets an immovable object.”

Only one Democrat voted for the proposed bill and one Republican voted against it, on what NPR’s Scott Neuman called a “straight party vote.” Senator Ted Cruz, a Republican from Texas (imagine that), mentioned trying a filibuster during the Senate’s debates. Not much else needs to be said to state the obvious: Congress is in another stalemate, perpetuating the political polarization of the country and potentially screwing it over.

There is one Republican, at least, who acknowledges reality.

“It is not going to succeed because the American people do not want government shut down,” Senator John McCain said. “And they’ll blame Congress. It’s not as if we haven’t seen this movie before.”

Speaker John Boehner implied something different. “The American people don’t want the government shut down and they don’t want Obamacare.” It’s subtle, but this statement forces the listener to choose sides. Not only is there a severe political divide in Washington, but they’re bringing it to the public, too.

Even if this bill was bipartisan, it is only temporary; it would only take care of the government’s problems until Dec. 15. They can’t even agree on a three to fourth month legislation. But Congress would definitely agree on a foolproof solution by mid-December, right?

Republicans have to be given some credit; they’re fighting pretty hard. They have really needed to gain some ground since the Bush era, but what they’re asking for, at this point, is becoming impossible. Obamacare hasn’t died since its proposal, and it doesn’t seem likely that it will die now. They’ve been blamed for government shut downs before, and it didn’t do them any good. On the other hand, Democrats are fighting hard as well. They’ve had to do a lot to keep Obamacare on its feet with these meddling Republicans.

But that’s the problem; they’re fighting. And to be fair, they’re probably not the only ones. We all need to take a step back and see the larger picture. I doubt, however, that it will happen by Friday. NPR’s Tamara Keith said that, “the most likely scenario is that the Senate will take up the spending bill, restore the Obamacare funding and send it back to the House. Tag, you’re it.”

But this isn’t all fun and games. Republicans will realize this when the time comes to put their money where their mouth is.