Republican takes lead on Wal-Mart

See, here's a great way to dig your party out of the minority status it's climbed into: take a stance that's both ethically and fiscally responsible.

The numbers are in. From New Hampshire, where Wal-Mart employees top the list of Medicare recipients, to Wisconsin where the state payed $2.7 million to insure employees -- all while the corporation raked in $10.3 billion in profits.

Make no mistake about it, this is a tax increase. And an unnecessary one at that.

Now, in Idaho the Speaker of the state house is considering legislation, clearly aimed at Wal-Mart, requiring employers to insure their workers.

And he's a Republican.

First: I'm not surprised. Also: I'm glad. It's smart politics, it makes sense and it's ethical. But I do shake my head.

Democrats should've been doing this. They should be doing this across the nation. Take the numbers, show people how much they're paying to subsidize profitable corporations and then fuse it to the ethical argument.

To be fair, Democrats have been bombarded by loony judicial nominees, a massive social security disinformation campaign, and other pressing issues -- some of which they've been good about (social security) and some not so (bankruptcy bill, Iraq) -- but there are a few issues that could help them win again.

Healthcare is one of them.

Another is the minimum wage, which has been shown to be both politically popular (in 2004 initiatives were passed in "red" states like Florida and Nevada) and good for local economies -- aside from being the right thing to do. The Christian thing to do, if you will.

Why, oh why does it take a Republican to bring this up? Well, either way, bully for you Bruce Newcomb of Burley.

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