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Bryan Preston


July 10, 2013 - 7:28 pm

Jonathan Chait, the pundit who famously didn’t like George W. Bush because, well, he didn’t like him so there! scribbles about immigration reform. He fails to stay within the lines.

One of the novel developments in conservative thought during the Obama years is a burgeoning hatred not merely for government but for lawmaking. Before the Obama era, the ends of crafting laws divided the parties, but the means did not. The process of corralling votes, placating hold-outs, and hammering out compromises was not something either side especially loved — you’ve heard the classic line about watching the sausage get made — but also not something that one side disliked more than the other. But a hatred for lawmaking has emerged in the Obama years, first as a Republican tactic, and then as an apparently genuine belief system.

The distrust for lawmaking is the main argument — wait, “argument” is too strong; maybe premise? — of a rare joint op-ed by Rich Lowry and William Kristol, editors of the National Review and the Weekly Standard. Lowry and Kristol urge House Republicans to kill immigration reform, because passing it would involve legislating, and legislating is bad.

They don’t put it exactly like that, of course.

Let’s just stop right there. “They don’t put it like that,” Jon boy, because that’s nowhere near what they mean. Chait is, I dunno, projecting? Reflecting? Vomiting random words onto his keyboard? Throwing a tantrum and stomping his foot because his side just can’t get their way right now this instant?

He’s certainly making stuff up, and is a poster boy for why dialogue between left and right has broken down. What Lowry and Kristol mean is that this particular law is bad, and they’re right. It’s bad. It should die because it’s bad.

The process of legislating has not become anathema to the GOP. They engage in said process every day in state capitols all over the fruited plain. What’s that thing they’re doing in Austin right now that’s causing so much ruckus? Oh, right, they’re trying to pass a law under threat from a mad Democrat mob that chants “Hail Satan!” and “F*** the church!” Republicans engage in legislating in the House all the time, passing responsible budgets that go nowhere, while the Democrat-controlled Senate does nothing but whine and blame Republicans for not rubber-stamping whatever Chuck Schumer wants.

What some Republicans do disdain and should disdain is legislation spawned in Gang discussions and backroom deals and buyoffs and payoffs, the sort of processes that bequeathed the Obama stimulus, the Obama health care bill, and now this awful immigration reform bill. Those are all awful laws, built almost entirely in secret by one party, and foisted on the American people whether we wanted them or not. We infamously have to pass them just to find out what’s in them, and Democrats in Congress passed them without even bothering to read them first.

The party that has developed an allergy to open government is the Democrats. They have abandoned governing for the sake of tweeting and launching bogus wars on women and other PR efforts that really have nothing to do with responsible leadership. Harry Reid has turned the Senate into little more than an annex of the White House West Wing. It doesn’t legislate. It pontificates.

Not that Chait will see or admit to any of that. He’s too busy pouting and drawing crayon mustaches on his photo of Newt Gingrich.

Bryan Preston has been a leading conservative blogger and opinionator since founding his first blog in 2001. Bryan is a military veteran, worked for NASA, was a founding blogger and producer at Hot Air, was producer of the Laura Ingraham Show and, most recently before joining PJM, was Communications Director of the Republican Party of Texas.

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What a disappointment. Republican friend of mine tells me to read a sensible piece that defends the GOP against opinions like mine---"absent any coherent public policy proposals and unable to corral their felines into a single cage, they investigate instead of legislate"---and suggests this blog post. Had I known the title was the beginning of nothing more interesting or persuasive than the comments below HuffPo articles---please, "Jonathan Chait is a Silly Little Boy?"---I would have passed. Would that you might have abandoned the adolescent imagery---"vomiting...onto his keyboard?"---which apparently is intended to function as a substitute for the in-depth analysis that marks Chait's work.

One example? Okay.

Chait wasn't "making stuff up" when he referenced Kristol/Lowry as embodying a "distrust for lawmaking." And he is, of course, right when he simply says, "They don't put it exactly like that..." They wouldn't put it like that. But it is what Chait says it is.

Had you read Chait's understanding of legislating or lawmaking---the give-and-take, the "side deals," the compromises, the hammering out of a consensus---you might have recognized the basis for a pretty solid argument that the GOP of our time has an antipathy for the hard work of governance. Kristol/Lowry, instead of examining possibilities for dialogue per the immigration bill, reinforce the current Republican paradigm: If it's not the way we want it at first glance, kill the bill.

Simplistic pieces with adolescent references typically find favor with those who see things simplistically and articulate at an adolescent level. Just read the comments of those who agree with you. Not an impressive lot.

1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
When you call somebody else "a poster boy for why dialogue between left and right has broken down," it'd be more effective if you didn't follow it by referring to the Democratic party as the "Democrat mob," and claim that their objections to the Texas abortion law consist of: "Hail Satan!� and “F*** the church!�

Come on, man. Straw men don't punch back.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
The Daily Caller has a clip today of Rep. Raul Labrador taking on, among others, Jonathon Chait.

Chait is a jerk. He falls back on the same old Dem talking points-Republicans are racists, obstructionists, and whatever other "ist" he can throw out there. Dems lap that nonsense up like a bunch of mindless poodles (apologies to poodles). Honestly, the Dems have regurgitated the same old tropes for so long that it all sounds like "Wah, wah, wah, waaaah," to me.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
'One of the novel developments in conservative thought during the Obama years is a burgeoning hatred not merely for government but for lawmaking.'

Why should anyone in the country have nothing but a burgeoning hatred for lawmaking?

Does the Fed enforce the immigration laws on the books?

Do the Feds (down 40% from the Bush administration) and many states enforce the 18,000 gun laws that are already on the books?

Do the Feds not ignore laws that they do not like?

Does the President not decide how laws will be enforced or implemented which the laws specify how the Federal government MUST enforce a law or how it MUST implement it?

Does the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court not rewrite laws to achieve his aim even if those laws were already rewritten by Congress before passage so as to be specific in its intent?

So, pray tell, Jon, why on Earth would anyone want more laws when the Feds do not enforce or adhere to the laws already on the books and further legislation will only serve to erect 'a multitude of New Offices, and sen[d] hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance'... for the sole purpose of fatiguing [Americans] into compliance with [their] measures'?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Chait is a person without character and obviously suspect principles. He probably believes Bubba was a 'good president' because he was/is a 'good liar.' He (Chait) cannot relate to people who wish honesty, integrity and STATESMANSHIP to become integral parts of government and policy of the United States; he doesn't understand the concepts because everything to him is about the hustle - lying to anyone at anytime about anything just to get your way (aka: the typical democratic persona). We certainly have a looooong way to go, but we must stand up and fight for what is right.

Remember BENGHAZI!
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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