Having your criticism of a tax cut and eating it, too.
What follows is not a discussion of the pros and cons of a tax cut, but on the ability of some lawmakers to stand up for what they believe.
House Democrats had it both ways the other day when they stood up and strongly criticized House Republicans for supporting a tax cut that doesn't amount to a hill of beans…unless you consider 7 cents a day a hill of beans. Then most of them sat down and voted for the thing.
"It's a political gimmick," Rep. Phil Cavanagh (D-Redford Township) asserted during floor debate.
We will not "go away quietly," threatened the House Democratic leader as Rep. Rick Hammel (D-Mt.Morris) correctly pointed out that those who make more money will benefit the most from this tax cut.
Everybody knows that everyone in the House is up for re-election and now house members can go back home and say, "I cut your taxes. See what a good boy and girl am I."
The Democrats did try to amend the package to put a few more bucks in it, but the House Republicans voted no, while defending their plan as a way to give back to the citizens their money in the first place.
But then came time for the final vote. Given all the rhetoric from the D's, to be consistent, you thought they would vote against the plan out of principle.
Not even close.
The vote on rolling back the date for the income tax cut was a whopping 103-5. There were five Democrats who voted on principle but as you can clearly see the rest of the D's locked arms with the R's to pass it.
A pat on the head goes to Representatives Tim Bledsoe (D-Grosse Pointe) Doug Geiss (D-Taylor), Rudy Hobbs (D-Lathrup Village, Ellen Cogen Lipton (D-Huntington Woods) and the aforementioned Mr. Cavanagh who had the guts to vote against something they felt was wrong.
All the other Democrats, thinking self-preservation, voted yes saying "something is better than nothing," underscoring once more that when it comes to principle vs. politics, the later almost always wins out.