Senator Wyden Attacked For Actually Trying To Get Stuff Done, Rather Than Playing Partisan Politics
from the why-congress-has-such-a-low-approval-rating dept
Though Democrats still have every intention of slamming Republicans who backed Ryan’s earlier plan, there’s sentiment in both parties that Wyden’s latest move gives the GOP at least some cover.From there, the article also suggests that Wyden's efforts on SOPA/PIPA were similarly traitorous to Democrats, because (oh gosh!) he worked with Rep. Darrell Issa on SOPA/PIPA:
“It neutralizes the weapon,” Sen. John Cornyn, chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, said in an interview.
As if that weren’t enough, Wyden also teamed up with another favorite Democratic whipping boy, Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), to tear up a carefully scripted anti-piracy bill backed by one of the Democratic party’s most loyal constituencies: Hollywood.Of course, Politico's narrative doesn't work as well if you follow the real timeline -- which was that Wyden was working against these bills way before Issa realized there was a problem with them. The two did team up, eventually, but not to mess up Democratic partisan politics -- but to stop a really bad bill.
This seems like a quintessential example of the kind of inside baseball reporting that commentators like Jay Rosen complain about all the time. It's reporting on politics like it's a horse race, and the most important thing is which party is winning -- not what they're actually doing.
In fact, if you want to put the Politico article in context, I would suggest first reading this Bloomberg piece from a few months ago about Senator Wyden, called, Ron Wyden, Senator From Planet Where Congress Works. That article shows a Senator who isn't focused on playing to what the party wants, but on actually getting important stuff done.
And I think most of us agree that, when it came to SOPA/PIPA, stopping those awful bills was a lot more important than some partisan politics. It's pretty ridiculous to then use that as an example of how he's messing up the game plan for Democrats. Perhaps the real lesson is that the Democrats have the wrong game plan. Millions of people lined up behind Wyden and against PIPA and SOPA. It had nothing to do with partisan politics and everything to do with what was the right thing to do. The reason why everyone hates Congress these days is because they're all focused on purely partisan politics and how much they can hurt "the other guy," rather than seeing if they can actually do something useful. That Wyden is attacked because he's trying to do something useful (and ignoring the partisan gamesmanship in the process) seems pretty pathetic.