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josie's avatar

Isn't it the role of the loyal opposition to oppose?

Asked by josie (28695points) October 8th, 2010

Both parties make disengenuous appeals to bipartisanship.
Why do they insult our intelligence?
It is the role of the opposition to oppose.

When your favorite political party is in the majority, you fully expect them to press the advantage and advance the agenda that you voted for.

When your favorite political party is in the minority, you fully expect them to thwart the agenda of the other party do you not? You certainly cannot expect them to sell you out after you cast your precious vote for them.

So what is this nonsense about bipartisanship.
Is it not the role of the opposition to oppose?

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5 Answers

iamthemob's avatar

I’m going to answer this in the ideal sense, rather than the world-as-it-is sense.

No. There is no reason why the two parties should be oppositional. If we’re talking at the federal level, the job of a representative is to legislate in a manner that is best for the nation without allowing his or her constituency to bear the bulk of the cost or harm of the laws, regulations, and programs enacted. Although the two parties have different opinions on how this should be done, the idea is that debate and discussion among the diverse will lead to the best decision in each instance. Fighting for the Right or Left is a gross recategorization of the relationship between the parties (as they should be).

Bipartisanship, therefore, should be the rule, and not the nonsense.

sigh, I wish it were so though…

Trillian's avatar

What does opposition accomplish? It sounds like you mean opposition for the sake of opposition. Why not for god’s sake, work together and actually accomplish something? That is, of course, supposing those who talk about it are actually serious and not just mouthing something that sounds good.
As I understand it, these people are in office to serve you and me. To make our lives a bit better and run the country. I think that they should fucking have at it, start running shit and drop this “my side vs your side” crap.
But then, I’m not a reliable source.

Qingu's avatar

I don’t think a political party’s traditional role implies anything about what legislator’s should do.

United States legislators should do what is best for their representatives and for their country. The current minority party is obviously not doing this, whether they are simply deluded in their beliefs about what’s good for the country or actively malevolent and self-interested in the bribes promised to them by their corporate backers.

ETpro's avatar

There is only one party that has shut down the government. There is only one party that has ever held 320 pieces of legislation off the Senate floor by filibuster or by holds or parliamentary moves in a single legislative session. There is only one party that has filibustered initiates to help put Americans back to work even though they originally came up with the initiate. The Party of No! name has never before been attached to any party. The Republicans have totally earned that name. If Obama proposed it, they would be against eternal life.

Of course, one expects opposition to things a party honestly opposes when that party is in opposition. But opposing legislation they themselves proposed, that takes a Party of NO!. Republicans have made a cold calculation that if they can obstruct enough and hurt the economy enough, cause enough unemployment, voters will blame Democrats and Republicans gain control of the House and Senate this November.

The evidence of this was made clear yet again today. There is a section of the Stimulus bill that has actually enjoyed broad bipartisan support. The TANF Emergency Fund has put 240,000 Americans to work. It is about to expire. Both parties agree it works. Even arch conservative Republican Governor Haley Barbour of Mississippi, head of the Republican Governor’s Association, said it had created m2400 jobs in his state.

House Democrats easily passed a one year extension to TANF months ago. But in the Senate, on three separate occasions when Democrats tried to the extension bill up for a vote, one single Republican Senator objected and put a hold on it. So today it expired, and nearly a quarter of a million Americans will lose their jobs this month thanks to that. That’s not loyal opposition, it is putting partisan politics above the good of the nation.

josie's avatar

@ETpro Other than when there seemed to be a legitimate threat to the future survival of the Nation, which most citizens would attempt to thwart without regard to political ideology, when has either party thought too much about the good of the nation?

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