House Republicans passed John Boehner’s DOA Plan B 215-209-1, but what is important is how Republicans tried to fool America into cutting taxes for millionaires by throwing 300,000 kids off food stamps.
Before the House could even vote, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid let them know that it didn’t matter what they passed because the Senate would not be voting on it. White House Press Secretary Jay Carney called Plan B an exercise in futility, “Plan B, which is the only thing the House of Representatives, the Republicans in the House, are focused on right now is a multi-day exercise in futility at a time when we do not have the luxury of exercises in futility. The Speaker and his lieutenants have spent days trying to twist arms and wrangle votes within their own conference. It’s an exercise in Republican vote counting that will not result in anything for the American people. It cannot pass the Senate. The President would veto it if it got to his desk.”
House Republicans knew their bill was going nowhere, but they engaged in what amounted to a day long temper tantrum/publicity stunt that was designed to sell the same ideas that have failed to pass at least twice before.
The bill may be dead, but it is important to look what the House Republicans tried to do. Rep. Chris Van Hollen pointed out during the debate that Plan B would throw 300,000 kids off food stamps and an additional 300,000 kids off of Medicaid. According to a White House analysis, Boehner’s Plan B would actually give millionaires a $50,000 tax cut. A Tax Policy Center analysis of Plan B found that it would result in a tax cut of $108,000 for millionaires.
Boehner’s Plan B was nothing but the same old Republican upward redistribution of wealth that they have been pushing for two years. Voters rejected the ideology behind Plan B at the polls in November. Boehner and the House GOP offered a plan that wouldn’t seriously address the deficit, but would hurt the most vulnerable members of our society.
All but 23 House Republicans voted today to cut food and healthcare for a combined 600,000 poor children, so that millionaires could get an extra fifty grand in their pockets. (Zero Democrats supported the bill, and they were joined by 22 Republicans who also voted no.)
This is where the Republican Party is at right now, and it is also why it is looking more and more likely that we are heading over the fiscal cliff.
(Note: This story was published prior to the final vote on Plan B falling apart. Boehner and Cantor said they had the votes for passage, when they didn’t. For updated information please see Eric Cantor Thinks Starving Millions of People Instead of Cutting Defense is Common Sense, and House Republicans Are So Serious About the Fiscal Cliff that They are Going Home for Christmas.)