WSJ – Blue Dogs Make Sleepy Watch Dogs – All bark and no bite

When the so-called fiscally conservative “Blue Dog” Democrats folded on the health care reform bill, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi skated to victory and even declared, “That was easy.” No wonder. A new analysis of the three big House votes impacting the budget and deficit this year finds the Blue Dogs are all bark and no bite.

The calculations were done by Heritage Foundation congressional analyst Mike Franc. On three votes that would massively expand the size of government — the stimulus plan, cap and trade, and health care reform — Blue Dogs mostly were AWOL. “Of the 52 House Blue Dogs, only four voted against all three,” says Mr. Franc. Sixteen voted for two of the three, and 17 voted for all three.

“If all three of these provisions become law,” says Mr. Franc, “Obama would realize his goal of ‘remaking’ America. And the Blue Dogs will have done nothing to stand in the way of the largest rise in the national debt in history.”

As for the rare breed who earned their Blue Dog reputation by voting down the mega bills, they were Bobby Bright and Parker Griffith of Alabama, Walt Minnick of Idaho and Gene Taylor of Mississippi.

Wall Street Journal
11/17/9