It’s hard to imagine the that the hyperbolic rhetoric that characterized the health care reform debate could get any worse (death panels, etc.). But it will. Representative John Boehner (Asshat-OH) started it of last night with what amounted to a call for the overthrow of our democracy.
“Today we stand here amidst the wreckage of what was once the respect and honor that this House was held in by our fellow citizens.
“And we all know why it is so.
“We have failed to listen to America.
“And we have failed to reflect the will of our constituents.
“And when we fail to reflect that will – we fail ourselves and we fail our country.
My colleagues, this is the People’s House.
“When we came here, we each swore an oath to uphold and abide by the Constitution as representatives of the people.
“But the process here is broken.
“The institution is broken.
“And as a result, this bill is not what the American people need, nor what our constituents want.
“Americans are out there are making sacrifices and struggling to build a better future for their kids.
“And they are angry. They are angry that no matter how they engage in this debate, this body moves forward against their will.
“Shame on us.
“Shame on this body.
“Shame on each and every one of you who substitutes your will and your desires above those of your fellow countrymen.
“If we pass this bill, there will be no turning back. It will be the last straw for the American people.
“And In a democracy, you can only ignore the will of the people for so long and get away with it.
“And if we defy the will of our fellow citizens and pass this bill, we are going to be held to account by those who have placed us in their trust.
“We will have shattered those bonds of trust.
I’m sure if asked he will say that “being held to account” means being voted out of office. And that’s fair. If, as Boehner says, our representatives ignored the will or their constituents, then they will probably lose their seats. My own rep voted exactly as I would have instructed him: “Yea.” This will earn him my future vote. The true subversion is Beohner’s claim that his opinion is the majority opinion, and that those have fought for health care reform have subverted democracy.
I have news for Boehner. His party lost the last election. They may win the next one, but this one they lost. That means they are in the minority, a word seemingly unfamiliar to him. What “minority” means is that he represents the smaller part of the American public. He cannot rightly claim to represent me or anyone else outside the 8th district of Ohio or the House republican delegation, a delegation that is currently in the minority.
This is how democracy works: if the voters like what you’re doing, they vote for you. If they don’t, you’re out. Continuing calls for subverting the will of the people as expressed in last night’s vote are immoral and antidemocratic.