|Some Republicans were much too timid about letting their true feelings be known and revealing the real Republican agenda and scurried from Bunning like cockroaches from a flourescent light:
Asked whether this was a debate his party wanted to have right now, with the jobless rate hovering near 10 percent, Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) smiled and said: "You're a pretty smart guy - I'll let you use your own judgment on that."
But it's clear that many House members and senators didn't want much to do with Bunning's efforts. Representatives of senators in states that have seen furloughs, including Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), John McCain (R-Ariz.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), Thad Cochran (R-Miss.), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Richard Burr (R-N.C.) and Bob Bennett (R-Utah), did not respond to inquiries seeking comment about Bunning's push.
Aides to two Republicans running for the Senate - former Rep. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Rep. Mike Castle (R-Del.) - also did not respond to inquiries seeking comment, and a spokeswoman for Rep. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), a Senate candidate in Illinois, said the congressman wasn't available for comment.
But others sought to blame the Democrats of course:
Republicans said that Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) deserves blame for waiting until the eve of the deadline to attempt to clear the must-pass package. Corker said Congress shouldn't keep waiting until the deadline of expiring programs only to "kick the can down the road" without solving the problem.
And Rep. John Mica (R-Fla.), ranking member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, criticized the Obama administration for being too slow to enact a longer-term overhaul to keep highway funds flowing - but he acknowledged that "maybe we don't do a good enough job of saying what a bad job the other side is doing."
Bunning took to his own defense and actually picked up a powerful voice added to his defense in Jon Kyl:
"If we can't find $10 billion to pay for something that we all support, we will never pay for anything on the floor of the U.S. Senate," Bunning said defiantly, standing at his desk in the back row of the chamber. "I have offered several ways to do this, including trying to negotiate with the majority leader's staff. None have been successful."
Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) has been one of the few Republicans to publicly back Bunning's push, saying Democrats were being hypocritical because - at the least - the economic stimulus package should pay for the new spending and that Democrats were circumventing their own rules to pay for new spending. He said that the quiet GOP response was simply a matter of timing, as he hadn't learned about Bunning's decision to object until after Thursday's all-day White House health care summit.
Kyl said that Democrats were attempting to manipulate the media with a misleading message.
"If you're not willing to tell the truth that this could be paid for - and it should be paid for - because you think the press could misreport that you're not for extending unemployment, then why even come here?" Kyl said.
Which brings out the rank hypocrisy in all this. You see, Bunning seeks to block unemployment benefits, halt road projects and cut television access for millions of Americans. However, Bunning and Kyl were not always so keen on following PAYGO rules. In 2007, they sure forgot them real quick when it was time to extend tax breaks to wealthy Americans:
To exempt from pay-as-you-go enforcement modifications to the individual alternative minimum tax (AMT) that prevent millions of additional taxpayers from having to pay the AMT.
Even Corporate Democrat Kent Conrad realized how dangerous this was:
Sen. CONRAD: If you want to blow a hole in the budget as big as all outdoors, here is your opportunity--a trillion dollars not paid for, a trillion dollars that we are going to go out and borrow from the Chinese and Japanese. That makes absolutely no sense. I urge my colleagues to vote no.
You see, for Bunning, Kyl and indeed the whole Republican Party programs should have to be paid for if they benefit any of us out here in the great unwashed masses. However, if they are tax cuts for wealthy Americans they do not mind wasting a trillion dollars. They do not mind selling our children's futures to the Chinese Communists just like they have sold our jobs to take advantage of slave labor.
Americans are watching and I hope they realize one thing as Republicans scurry away from Jim Bunning. Sure the guy is the crazy uncle of Kentucky politics and has been quite off his rocker for some time now. However, deep inside every Republican in office they believe in just what Jim Bunning is doing and would do so if they had the guts to. Is this really the party and mindset we want to turn our country back over too?? They have already shown that their governance brings failure they expect others who are less fortunate to pay for.