The next couple hundred years in Washington are certainly going to be interesting, considering the new rules of government being implemented by the Obama Administration and Democrats in the Senate.
Let' start with this week's decision by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to employ the "nuclear option" and do away with more than 230-years of history in that body by changing the rules for over-riding a filibuster. No more will a super-majority of 60-votes be needed to force cloture--now a simple majority of 51 will suffice. And that same one-vote majority will be all that's needed to approve judicial and cabinet appointees. Democrats say the change is needed to "overcome Republican obstructionism" in the Senate and get the people President Obama appointed into those offices.
But what those on the Left seem to forget is that someday, there will be a Republican President and a slim Republican majority in the Senate. And when that Republican President wants to appoint about a hundred pro-life Federal judges to then bench, it will require just that same 51-votes to move the process along. But do you think those future Democrats will sit idly by and say "Well, those are the rules, I guess we just have to sit here and take it." You know that they absolutely will not. Instead, their will be continuous cries that "we need to return to the old ways of doing things in the Senate in order to protect the power of the minority!" We'll probably also hear "This is not the way the American People want their government to operate!" Well sorry, kids, we are playing by your rules now.
And the President set some interesting precedent earlier this year by setting aside enforcement of entire sections of the Affordable Care Act--without any approval from Congress. Remember the delay in the Employer Mandate to provide health insurance to all workers? There was no Congressional vote before the President just waved his hand--waiving the requirement. The same goes for this month's decision that insurance providers can continue to offer existing plans that do not conform with the requirements that were passed by Congress in 2009. Again, no vote in Congress was made to amend that law--President Obama said nobody has to pay attention to that provision--and it suddenly went away.
So what will be the Democratic reaction when that future Republican President waves his hand and says "We will no longer enforce the individual mandate for health insurance coverage--and the IRS is hereby prohibited from collecting the fine--I mean tax for constitutionality purposes--on people who go without coverage"? Will liberals say "I guess he's just doing what's best for the country at this juncture"? Hell no they won't. They will angrily take to the floors of Congress accusing that President of violating the Constitution and acting in a "totalitarian fashion" in circumventing the legislative process to "further his own extreme agenda".
However, those Democrats will be hoist upon their own petards, as that President points to Mr. Obama's actions in 2013 as the precedent and basis for his actions. Hopefully he reminds his critics on the Left that "We are just playing by the rules that you guys set."