Today’s political theatre began at the House Financial Services Committee with Representative Maxine Waters (D-CA) when she castigated the captains of the universe for raising her credit card fees, a rebuke that at once detailed both the depth of her banking industry knowledge and literary clichés (Tom Wolfe should sue her for brand impairment). Waters’ comments were met with the classic deer in the headlights look from the eight assembled bank CEO’s (and an unusual caution by Chairman Frank to “calm down”).
But not to be outdone, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid stole the show on Capitol Hill at another meeting by rolling Speaker Pelosi in an embarrassing display of political chutzpah and backstabbing. The Politico comments:
According to a half dozen Congressional aides and members, Reid went before the cameras Wednesday to announce a stimulus deal before Pelosi had agreed on all the details of school construction financing.
“It’s ruffled feathers, big time,” said a House Democrat speaking on condition of anonymity. “The speaker went through the roof.”
Added one House Democratic aide: “He tried to roll her and she knew it.”
With friends like this who needs Republicans?
Conservatives can find encouragement in today’s comedy of errors if they continue to coalesce around the principle of loyal opposition and rediscover fiscal sanity. Beginning with the market’s overwhelming disapproval of Treasury Secretary Geithner’s lightweight performance in the Senate yesterday, Democrats are off to an underwhelming start with a highly unpopular spending bill. The first several weeks of the new Democrat Majority of post partisan hope and change finds the Republicans unusually united while President Obama and the Democrats busy themselves in a their own knife fight.