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Violence Against Women, Student Loans, and Incredibly Stupid Politics

April 26, 2012

I’m not sure how warm & fuzzy you tend to feel about your nation’s government, but when keeping student loan rates low and reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act are seriously controversial – I just scream and beat my head into the nearest wall. Guess what? I’m going hoarse and I’ve got one heck of a headache.

Let’s start with the Violence Against Women Act. It’s been around for 18 years and has never had much trouble being reauthorized. Why the fuss this time? Some people, it seems, just can’t stop playing politics long enough to choose the no-brainer. For the GOP, desperately fighting against their “war-on-women” rep, you’d think the last thing they’d want to do would be to appear to give cover to domestic abusers. And I’m not saying that they’re doing that. I’m simply accusing them of incredibly stupid politics. 

What’s the problem? Republicans are whining that Democrats are “trying to make us look bad” by expanding the act to ban discrimination against gay, lesbian and transgender victims of domestic abuse, granting Native American tribal rights to deal with the issue, and expanding a visa program for immigrant victims of abuse. How would that make Republicans look bad? Well, when they’re forced to vote against the bill because of these horrible, horrible additions, of course! You know what? If that’s the vote you choose to make, you deserve to look bad.

On the House side, they’ve got their own version of the VAWA – complete with a provision to funnel some of that funding away into mandatory audits of groups receiving funds (because we all know what a racket those women’s shelters are.) Oh, and because they are Republicans in 2012, there is of course a provision to cap salaries at the Justice Department. Because the GOP is all about attracting the best and the brightest to public service?

Turning to the student loan debate, we again find those rascally Democrats trying to make those poor Republicans look bad. This time, they want to finance the continuation of low interest student loans (avoiding a doubling of the rate) by closing a loophole for wealthy households filing as S corps. Dastardly! Why, that would be kinda like raising taxes – or something. No, say Republicans, much better to just kill off part of the healthcare bill. (The part devoted to public health and prevention.) Don’t know about you, but to me, that doesn’t sound like a brilliant political move, either.

In summary, not only are these two traditionally bipartisan, publicly very popular pieces of legislation hitting a brick wall on the Hill — it’s happening for the sake of incredibly stupid politics. 

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One Comment leave one →
  1. suetiggers permalink
    April 26, 2012 11:27 am

    Republicans are whining that Democrats are “trying to make us look bad” but it’s sooooooooo easy 🙂

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