Monday, February 23, 2009

Wingnuts on Parade

What's left of the Republican Party are doing their best to make themselves even more politically irrelevant, and social pariahs, too.

Governors Bobby Jindal (Louisiana) and Mark Sanford (South Carolina) have announced they may not accept Stimulus funds targeted for extending unemployment benefits. To steal a line from the great Tom Lehrer, unemployed conservatives in Louisiana or South Carolina must feel like Christian Scientists with appendicitis.

Sanford, who is jockying with Jindal for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012, will not be outdone. In addition to refusing funds for unemployment benefits, he will refuse $42 million targeted for making government buildings more energy-efficient. These are major players in one of our nation's major political parties, folks.

But wait, the conservative downward spiral picks up steam.

Kentucky Senator Jim Bunning (pictured) announced to his constituents that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, who was operated on for pancreatic cancer, will be dead within nine months.

Classy guy.

Update: Steve Benen appropriately calls Sanford "The Gift That Keeps on Giving."

February 24 Update: The NY Times editors take their cue from Sempringham:

What makes these bad decisions worse is that they are little more than political posturing by rising Republican stars, like Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana and Gov. Mark Sanford of South Carolina. This behavior reinforces the disturbing conclusion that the Republican Party seems more interested in ideological warfare than in working on policies that get the country back on track.

Fortunately, as President Obama prepares for his first address to Congress on Tuesday evening, voters of both parties have noticed. About three-quarters of those polled in a recent New York Times/CBS News survey — including more than 60 percent of Republicans — said Mr. Obama has been trying to work with Republicans. And 63 percent said Republicans in Congress opposed the stimulus package primarily for political reasons, not because they thought it would be bad for the economy.

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