The new year is in place, the old Congress has adjourned, the new class will be sworn in shortly. We can only hope that some serious lessons have been learned. A return to business-as-usual will be disastrous for the country immediately and for the incumbents in 2012. They should realize that.
Possibly the brightest news of the day appears here:
Bi-Partisan Repeal in the Wings
One would have to be a blind optimist to believe that it will be that simple. It won't! But consider what the message would be.
The new legislature is seated. The House introduces a repeal bill and the unified Republicans are joined by twenty, thirty or more Democrats in supporting the action. That would clearly be bi-partisan, unlike the original passage. A great message enroute, step one.
Now take it to the Senate. Can it pass a cloture vote? With the reduced Democratic majority that seems likely. So, could it reach the floor for a straight up/down vote on a simple majority? It it does, you suddenly get pressure on some Dems to cross the aisle. Can the Reps keep Snowe, Collins, Murkowski and Brown in line? Could you get a passage? If you can, a passed bill would be a great message, step two!
Do it before the State of the Union and you've got a great message for the President to attempt to side-step and circumlocute before the American people. Could he veto it and then stand before the people telling them how he ignored the will of the majority? Might he not relent? Well, no. I don't think he would give in, but it would be a great message, step three.
Veto. Then can you get a two-thirds over-ride in both houses? No. No way. Remotely possible in the House, but totally beyond any possibility in the Senate. Yet, the cross-over votes would be a great sign for the American electorate to know exactly where their representation stands.
This is going to be good!