The other day this writer took to task the Republicans over their proposed "governing agenda" before it was officially disclosed.
One might ask, why be critical of the Republicans before they make their proposal? Isn't that being unfair? Maybe so, but given their history of governance (or lack of), seeing the incompetence of their past performance (when they've been in the majority and in the White House) or as presently, the minority acting as knee jerk obstructionists and resistive to anything Obama and the Democrats propose, there was nothing this writer could imagine could be ground breaking and original to what they've talked about in the past.
So now in the spirit of "fairness", lets summarize some of the actual details of the Republicans "Pledge to America", which they announced yesterday from a local lumber yard in Sterling, Virginia.
For starters, no tax hikes; leaving in place all the Bush tax cuts of 2001 that are due to expire at the end of the year (including the continued tax reductions for the rich).
Cut government spending to save $100 billion and limit spending increases.
Freeze hiring of non-security federal employees.
Repeal of the new health care law.
Limit malpractice law suits.
Prohibit taxpayer funding of abortion.
Require congressional sponsors of legislation to cite its constitutional authority.
Have no civilian trials for foreign terrorist suspects.
Rein in federal regulation by requiring Congress to approve any measure that costs $100 million or more.
Fund all U.S. missile defense efforts.
Strengthen border security and enact tougher visa reviews.
When it's all broken down (save for extending all the Bush era tax cuts) there are no specifics to any of the proposals.
Even "tea party" activists were disappointed. Andrew Ian Dodge, the coordinator of the Tea Party Patriots in Maine put the "Pledge" this way saying, "The first time you read it, it's like yeah, this is all right. Then you read it again. And again. Every time you read it, it gets less satisfying. It's full of platitudes. It's almost patronizing. There are all these words that the tea party people like, but there's nothing concrete in it."