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Kasich on bipartisanship

Today John Kasich published an editorial in the New York Times urging Republicans to reach out to Democrats to fix health insurance, and Democrats to pitch in. It upset a lot of people for the serious spin on history. My comment:

This is the kind of simplistic “kumbaya” article that is all the more cynical for it’s intent. It is designed to get people who aren’t paying attention to think that the only problem in Washington is that those on the other side aren’t willing to be team players. In the case of health care policy, the ACA started off as an attempt at a bipartisan consensus by using a moderate Republican proposal as a starting point. Republicans refused all cooperation, and vilified it relentlessly, even though it represented their own side’s policy framework. Now they are stuck, because they have no alternative. They have no alternative because the ACA is their plan. Which they have promised to abolish. From here, you either improve the ACA, or every other option is going to make huge sections of the public worse off. Sensible Republicans would try to work with Democrats to improve the ACA. But that is not the Republican party right now. And any attempt to involve Democrats is only going to be so they can blame them for any downsides. And moving off the ACA is only going to have downsides. So really, there is no logical reason why Democrats would want to be involved. But Kasich goes wrapping himself in the flag and sings hymns to bipartisansip, doubtless to burnish his credentials for the next election cycle.

Kasich’s own record is relentlessly partisan. For him to try to sell bipartisanship is simply cynical.

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