LatinaLista -- A strange little press conference was held this afternoon in the Senate Print Gallery on Capitol Hill. It was led by Senator Carl Levin, Chair of the Armed Services Committee and Senator Claire McCaskill, Chair of the Subcommittee on Contracting Oversight.
These two senators were meeting with the press to discuss what Republicans do when they don't get their way -- boycott Senate committee hearings. In turn, effectively shutting down any kind of work that can be done at all, whether it involves amending the healthcare bill or doing any other work vital to Americans.
All day long, there have been reports on what the healthcare bill means immediately for American families. As two contributors of the Today show, who know exactly what the bill means, outlined for viewers:
So who doesn't want insurance companies to cover pre-existing conditions?
Who doesn't want the donut hole for senior citizens to be taken away?
Who doesn't want children able to stay on their parents' insurance until they're 26-years-old?
The Republicans -- who seem to be responding to Tea Party aggressors.
The Tea Party has gone from being the darling of a new movement to working its way towards being an extremist militant group that so far is known for its tactics of hurling racist insults, threatening and intimidating politicians they don't agree with and justifying their actions all in the name of being "patriotic Americans."
As so often happens with extremist groups, their opposition to whatever they are opposing becomes so exaggerated and vocal that they drown out reason and reality.
The idea that it would be repulsive to Republicans and Tea Partiers, that people out of a job or those who haven't been able to qualify for health insurance because of a pre-existing condition don't have to wait anymore until they're literally on death's doorstep before deciding to risk financial ruin to be seen by a doctor for tests and/or hospitalization, shows an extreme sense of detachment to human suffering and is an example of the ugliest form of elitism in the industrialized world.
Over 30 percent of Latino citizens don't have health insurance but in all the vocal opposition by the GOP against the healthcare bill, the GOP leadership has not presented one piece of legislation that would help these Latinos, or the 11 percent of whites and 19 percent of blacks who also don't have health insurance.
So as the GOP leadership does their best to strike fear in the political hearts of their Democratic colleagues, disrupt business on Capitol Hill and slide further into the back pockets of Tea Party aggressors, the Latino community needs to send a big gracias to the GOP.
In the mid-term elections, the Latino community lost their fire to use their newfound civic power -- but not anymore. If the GOP continues to ignore disenfranchised communities, they may just find themselves disenfranchised come November.