As the federal government has shut down because the President and the Senate Democrats would not accede to the demand by Tea-Party House Republicans that the Affordable Care Act be defunded on the eve of the enactment of its last major provisions, it is helpful, I think, to put this whole absurdly contrived melodrama into perspective.
As has been widely reported each time the vote has been taken, Republicans in the House have now voted forty-one times to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
But an even more illustrative demonstration of their peculiar derangement was provided about a year ago.
Here is a news summary of that earlier effort at “defunding”:
“A new short-term budget bill introduced on Monday by House Republicans includes a bizarre provision banning federal funding to the anti-poverty group ACORN, despite the fact that the group has already been stripped of federal funding–and has been defunct for nearly three years.
“ACORN leaders announced that the group was disbanding in March 2010, after Congress cut off all federal funding to the organization. The provision in the current GOP budget bill, buried on page 221 of 269, would duplicate legislation that has already passed, to target an organization that does not exist.
“A spokesperson for the House Appropriations Committee told the Huffington Post the provision in the bill is ‘typical.’”
I could not have said it more succinctly.