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March 02, 2011 01:47 AM UTC

The Republican Hand

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  • by: botw

Republican leaders in Washington and in many states – including Colorado – are overplaying their hand.

The message many of them seem to have taken from the 2010 election is that they were given a mandate it is not clear they actually got. The mandate they think they got includes more than just reasonable efforts at curtailing spending (questionable in a recession, but an understandable consequence of Republican victories in November). In Wisconsin, it includes taking away basic union rights. In New Jersey, it means being a bully towards teachers and police officers. In Colorado (and many other states), it means Republican leaders think they can and should repeal the new health care law.

But the most recent polling about public unions (reported in today’s NYT) shows that Americans don’t favor gutting public unions and taking away basic bargaining rights. And Americans really like the signature aspects of the new health care law, including prohibiting the denial of preexisting conditions, allowing kids to stay on their parents’ plans until they are 26, “closing the donut hole,” and the like.

Republican leaders like Gov. Walker, Gov. Christie, Colorado House Majority Leader Amy Stephens, and Senate Minority Leader Mike Kopp overplay their hand at their peril.

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