Sen. Mike Lee displays childish attitude

Arash Tadjiki.

Arash Tadjiki.

Children are prone to throwing tantrums when their will is subverted by figures in authority. Most children grow out of this phase once tough life lessons teach them about the idea of compromise. Some of these rough, though necessary, experiences, however fail to change the mindset of some children, and they grow up without the coping mechanism of conciliation that life so graciously extends to them.

Even more seldom, these children grow into positions of power — even elected to the U.S. Senate — as is the case with tea party favorite Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah). The emphatically junior senator from Utah is throwing a fit on the national stage over the impending vote on a continuing resolution in October.

This continuing resolution would not only provide funding to ensure a fully functional government but also give much-needed financial assistance to what Sen. Lee views as the unrighteous, socialistic Affordable Care Act, colloquially known as ObamaCare, which provides care to those in less than optimal fiscal situations.

ObamaCare has long been the target of conservative criticism, with allegations ranging from socialist takeovers to the extreme prediction that it would institute death panels for the elderly. Sen. Lee has made his stance abundantly clear on the issue — he is willing to take the entire government hostage in order to get his way. Implementing his childish logic, the junior senator has declared that it is his way or the highway.

Sen. Lee isn’t alone. To his aid he has called a cadre of tea party-endorsed senators to sign a proposal declaring that it is better to shut down the government than to allow the abominable Affordable Care Act to continue in its loathsome existence.

His allies include heavy-hitting names such as Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.); both individuals carry quite a bit of clout in conservative camps. All in all, the sulking senator has summoned a formidable opposition to the Affordable Care Act — a total of 11 senators officially support his no-holds-barred, no-compromise approach to the October vote.

Standing in Sen. Lee’s way, of course, are the Marx-loving, freedom-hating Democrats who happen to control the Senate, not to mention a like-minded President with little to no motivation for repealing his own legislation. Surprisingly, however, Sen. Lee has his own party poised against him.

His compatriot Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) has refused to stand with the junior senator, and the more seasoned Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) are also abstaining. In fact, Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) has gone so far as to call it “the dumbest idea I have ever heard of.” For the first time in my life, I couldn’t agree more with a Republican senator.

Like a child misbehaving, those in authority are reprimanding Sen. Lee. Unlike any regular child, unfortunately, this particular outburst could have serious implications for a multitude of people. If the government shuts down, countless employees who rely on their job for sustenance will go without pay.

Furthermore, if the Affordable Care Act does, by some unfathomable miracle, get repealed, many implementations beneficial to the average starving student would go away. Good luck getting insurance, all you students in your early twenties.

Is this what the proud intellectual tradition of democracy has been reduced to: electing children to Congress? I suppose no one should be too surprised — tea party rhetoric has oft equated compromise to capitulation, as if politics were a battle to be won or lost at any and all costs.

But, looking at the situation, polarized as the country is, I find it disturbingly comforting that both Democrats and Republicans can agree when they see what an abysmal failure at governing he is, and what is unequivocally an irrational, unfounded and base-less idea.


    Republicans do have a history of behaving childishly when they don’t get their way; take the last Presidential election for example. Obama won fair and square by the electoral college AND popular vote, and yet Republicans were so upset they threatened to secede from the union!! Even when Bush unfairly won the 2000 election, liberals never went so far as to say they would secede. The way Donald Trump behaved and spoke the night of Obama’s re-election was a good indicator of how all tea-party conservatives felt and wanted to behave. Like a big whiny baby.

    As far as the ACA goes, a recent poll done by the United Technologies/National Journal Congressional Connection showed that most Americans don’t want congress to repeal Obamacare. And an independent cost analysis of Medicaid expansion in the state of Utah said that it would add over 123,000 uninsured people and save Utah $131 million. Sounds like Mike Lee is not only going against the people’s will, but is choosing the stance that will cost Utah more. As usual, Lee is putting politics before the best interests of the state and its people.

  • Itso Ashkee

    Disagreement in politics is something we have come to expect. It is the order of the day. If you have a contrary view, that’s fine. Tell us all about it. But labeling those with whom you disagree as childish does nothing to advance the dialog. Rather, it exposes you as a juvenile and infantile communicator who is incapable to conducting a reasoned discourse. I feel sorry for you.

  • Vernon Scott

    Newsflash…. “starving” students in their early twenties do not need nor do they want insurance.

    • Chris

      Myself, along with most college students I know, both want and need health insurance. No we don’t use it as often, but we are mortal and need modern medicine, too. You should get to know a student or two.

  • murraydad

    Of course republicans are supposed to compromise. Democrats on the other hand are principled and must never compromise. Do I have that correct?