GOP Follies: The Party of "No" Can't Even Get Saying "No" Right
It turns out that the one thing Republicans thought they were good at - "No!" - they can't get right. Congressional Quarterly has taken a mid-year look at voting patterns on the Hill, and if one thing is clear, a heck of a lot of GOPers seem to love doing exactly what Obama asks. In the House, fourty-four Republicans (fully a quarter of their caucus) have voted in support of measures where the President has "clearly indicated his preferences" at least 50% of the time. This includes hardcore conservatives like Vern Buchanan and Adam Putnam. By contrast, not a single Dem even hit the 40% mark last year when Bush was still in the White House.
The Senate side is even more remarkable. Thanks in part to the GOP's refusal to put up much of a fight on Obama's nominees (despite a whole lot of bluster and ugly, antidemocratic holds), fully thirty-two out of the mere 40 Republicans in the Senate have backed the Obama agenda at least half the time. Even serious mouth-breathers like Jeff Sessions and Saxby Chambliss are on this list. And half of this group has voted with Obama at 60% or greater clip:
Collins & Snowe are worthy of extra attention. CQ also offers a second metric, called "party unity," which judges how often a member of Congress votes with their party overall. Snowe has voted with the Republicans just 44% of the time, and Collins 49%. This means that on all matters, routine and profound, the two Senators from Maine vote with Democrats more often than with Republicans.