House Democrat Leader Mariano laments rise of principled Republicans

The Lowell Sun this weekend had a story on the Republican and Democratic cooperation on Beacon Hill.  Apparently it’s a love fest.

Democrats have held a majority in the Massachusetts House of Representatives since 1955. Their Republican colleagues haven’t had more than 50 representatives since 1973. But to characterize the body as a corps of Democratic yes-men shutting out a powerless Republican minority would be inaccurate.

Or so says the House’s top Democrat, Majority Leader Ronald Mariano, D-Quincy, a 21-year veteran of the chamber.

“We understand the role that the minority party has to play in this process,” he said.

Surprisingly, in these days of partisan gridlock, the House’s top Republican agrees.

“We try to engage in a way that allows our viewpoint to be heard. Sometimes it carries the day, and sometimes it impacts or modifies the outcome,” said Minority Leader Rep. Brad Jones, R-North Reading, who has served 18 years in the House.

I’m somewhat confused by this.  The House is a corps of Democratic yes men.  Otherwise there would be you know real debate on real issues. My favorite is this quote from Mariano.

Republicans face occasional internal spates with the rise of the tea party-leaning representatives who are seen as more ideologically rigid. Mariano sees no upside to this trend in the legislative process.

“One of the keys to the majority party is being able to cut a deal, and when you have a segment of your party that is unwilling to compromise, and is dug in on purely ideological points, and is unwilling to bend, it creates difficulties for the minority leaders,” he said.

But Mariano understands the pressure put on the minority leadership when some of their members go rogue.

Some may not call it going rogue.  Some may call it, standing up for principle.  Most recently when seven GOP members voted against socialistic price controls in private industry.

About Rob "EaBo Clipper" Eno

  • politicalmadman

    Really ? Soooo, does that mean you are not and are willing to compromise your ideology ? I doubt that very much.  So during the last debt cieling debate, these same “Tea Party Types” in Congress were tagged as being “too principled” in their stance to demand spending cuts in return for them raising the ceiling. Is there such a thing as being “too principled” ?  

  • V

    Ronald Mariano, D-Quincy, a 21-year veteran of the chamber

    and

    Rep. Brad Jones, R-North Reading, who has served 18 years in the House

    21 years and 18 years…And these clowns wonder why we have no respect for them.

  • That is what is making our government worse and more inefficient (if such a thing is possible).

    First, Mariano has a lot of face complaining about GOP extremists. Case in point is his predecessor as chair of the Insurance Committee, Byron Rushing.  Under Rep. Rushing’s leadership, Massachusetts became a national joke for MANDATING coverage of the most medical conditions nationwide, often with no premium increase.  Insurance companies fled Mass., and prices went up for those that remained.  When he became chair, did he (as an insurance professional who understood underwriting over pathos) try to stem this, or even hold it back?  No.  He presided over the stupidest insurance change in MA history – eliminating gender as a factor in setting rates, in the name of Equality (even thought this HURT women, who enjoyed lower rates for things like life insurance because they live longer!).  He did nothing to deal with his own extremists, but complains about ours?

    But.  Why isn’t moderation and compromise considered a principle?  Taking ideas from both sides, in order to create a COMMON good instead of an ideologically pure one?  Some of the most important work in a legislature is done in committee – looking at testimony, and discussing both sides.  Often, the majority party doesn’t consider a solution because it actually doesn’t occur to them that there is a different or less expensive way.  Republicans can offer different ideas, or at least ask different questions, that can lead to compromise and a better piece of legislation.  But not when they are more concerned with enforcing a rigid ideology over reaching a workable compromist.