The Free Press, Mankato, MN

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August 11, 2013

GOP's leaders, followers hasten its demise

Everyone knows Einstein’s definition of insanity: Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

House Republicans have voted 40 times to abolish Obamacare, despite the certainty that the Senate will reject such a bill.

That’s one reason this is the most detested Congress in the history of polling, which PPP reported this year is more unpopular than colonoscopies (by 58-31 percent) and root canals (65-32 percent).

Senate Republicans are part of the effort to delay, obstruct or sabotage, too, conducting some 420 filibusters since Obama took over, and currently manufacturing a debt ceiling crisis to shut down the government. The CBO estimates that such brinksmanship will cost 750,000 jobs this year, and 900,000 next year.

In the run-up to the last election, LA Times columnist Paul Whitefield wrote that that “What this country needs are laws to keep stupid people from voting.” Or serving in congress.

Former Sen. Roman Hruska (R-Neb.) once justified electing dimwits to Congress on the grounds that there are a lot mediocre people and they are entitled to representation, too.

Whitefield opined that anyone who still thinks Obama is a Muslim or was not born in America would not pass the blockhead test. (You know who you are.)

Whitefield may have been channeling the English philosopher John Stuart Mill: “Conservatives are not necessarily stupid, but most stupid people are conservatives. I believe that is so obviously and universally admitted a principle that I hardly think any gentleman will deny it.”

Even some Republicans share those sentiments. Gov. Bobby Jindal, for example, has referred to the Republican Party as the “stupid party,” and Sen. John McCain called some tea partiers “whacko birds.” That would make them the crazy wing of the stupid party. Nobel economist Paul Krugman recently agreed: “The madness of the GOP is the central issue of our time.”

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