When did we decide it would be a good idea for our government to be in the birth control business? The uproar over contraceptives, religion, and the health care law distracted Congress from the reality of revisiting the payroll tax cut, battling over the budget, dealing with long-term unemployment, and plotting how best to stall any semblance of progress until after the 2012 election.
Arizona spends too much time in the headlines (see: Arizona Tragedy: Only Fools Make Sense of Crazy). Saturday’s shootings came after a year of negative media coverage over the state’s landmark immigration enforcement bill, and the resulting condemnation and federal lawsuit. More recently, Arizona ran afoul of critics for discontinuing funding for certain types of transplant procedures because they are too costly for the state’s depleted budget.
Despite ongoing economic blight and the failure to reduce record unemployment, health care reform remains the most contentious issue of Barack Obama’s presidency. The bill embodies everything conservatives despise about big government, and resulted in angry demands for repeal while drafts were still being committed to paper. Republicans promised that one of their first priorities, should they retake control of Congress, would be to wipe this hated piece of legislation off the books forever.
With BP oil leak updates growing more ominous by the day, we expected more bad news from the gulf on Saturday. The president delivered the bad news with his weekly address, but no mention was made of BP. The nation has another, completely unrelated crisis to deal with, and the problem needs to be addressed this week.