Here is what I would HOPE to see……
OK it may sound strange that the Democrats should take the lead on a bill introduced by Republican Richard Baker of Louisiana but hear me out.
First this is what the Baker Bill would do for Katrina victims in Louisiana:
Baker’s Bill, which enjoys broad bipartisan support among Louisiana politicians and planners, would create a public corporation financed by the sale of federal bonds. A board appointed by the president would use the proceeds to offer buyouts to the owners of flood-damaged homes for at least 60 percent of the equity based on pre-Katrina value. It also would pay off the mortgages, heading off a possible wave of foreclosures.
By taking the lead on the Baker Bill the Democrats could cut the legs right out from under ANY Republican claiming that the Democrats are The Obstructionists. Keep in mind it was conservative Republicans that voted against the Baker Bill in committee last year. And it has been Republican President Bush who not only signaled early that he would not support the bill but has announced he does not support it now. The Democrats could say WE set aside differences and partisanship to do what was right and good for the people. The Democrats could demonstrate that WE were the ones who truly reached across the aisle to help a Republican pass a bill when his OWN party stood in the way of him helping the people of Louisiana. Any time a Republican levels the charge of Obstructionist the Democrats can fire back with 2 words: Baker Bill.
By taking the lead on the Baker Bill the Democrats could expose George Bush’s craven disregard for not only the needs of Katrina victims but those of the country as well. Louisiana homeowners face absolute ruin and Bush is not going to let a plan go through that would prevent that. The economy of Louisiana will be severely damaged and keeping the economy of Louisiana strong is good for the nation. The Democrats while working in a bipartisan manner would draw the nation’s attention to Bush’s failings and their determination to do what is best for the nation.
By taking the lead on the Baker Bill the Democrats could display that THEY have the leadership ability to get things DONE. (Hey we had to step in and help the bungling, selfish Republicans pass their own bill) And the Democrats can show they have the courage to support a PLAN even if it is not their own when it is good for the country. The Democrats can demonstrate true LEADERSHIP. Americans are sick of the stagnation in Washington due to partisan hostilities. They want someone to break through the dam of partisanship and set Washington back on track to governing and getting things done.
By taking the lead on the Baker Bill the Democrats could demonstrate a willingness to do what is RIGHT while the other party is sinking in a morass of CORRUPTION. They do it not for lobbyist money or ownership of a bill to herald their party but because it is right for the people who pay them and they were elected to represent.
Fighting for the Baker Bill now would enable Democrats to show the voters next November:
–It is the Republicans who are The Obstructionists.
–It is the Republicans who can’t get things Done.
–It is the Republicans who are stuck in Partisanship.
–It is the Republicans that lack Leadership.
–It is the Republicans that won’t do what is Right for America.
It is the Democrats that are paid BY You, to work FOR You, to do what is RIGHT for You
Please Call or Email your Representatives and tell them to back the Baker Bill .…ESPECIALLY the Democrats! Urge them to call for Baker’s bill (HR4100) to be brought to a vote. And tell them Why in case they don’t have a clue.
UPDATE: Good comment below on whether the Baker bill is good and should Dems sponsor their own bill. If the Dems can amend it to make it better that would be great. I doubt a Dem bill would pass if Louisiana can’t even get a Republican bill passed. Just being realistic….. With no bill there will be massive foreclosures and land will be even cheaper for developers.