Barney Frank: Why didn’t the Republicans fix (fill in the blank) when they had control?

I find it very difficult to disagree with someone, specifically Congressman Barney Frank (D-Mass.), who asks the same questions as those that pop into my head. The Republican establishment seems to have the same degree of difficulty understanding why they are unable to sell platitudes to the voting public that clash with past GOP actions, or more accurately, past inactions. Congressman Frank has on occasion turned criticism of such contradictions into political sport. For example. . .

While debating the federal financing of ACORN with Michele Bachmann on a May, 2009, “Lou Dobbs Tonight” show, the following exchange took place:

BACHMANN: And I think Congress has the fiduciary responsibility to set the bar very high for organizations…

FRANK: Well, I noticed, Lou…

BACHMANN: … that receive taxpayer money.

FRANK: I noticed that Congresswoman Bachmann didn’t answer your question. If it is wrong — and I’m appalled by some of what I’ve learned — why didn’t the Republicans — they were in the majority in Congress in fact until 2007. And George Bush was president. And when you had a Republican majority in both houses and George Bush is president, millions of dollars went to the ACORN housing counseling group.

Ms. Bachmann?

In October of 2009, Mssrs. Frank and Ryan had the following exchange during a Congressional hearing on health care reform:

I suspect that Congressman Ryan is still frustrated.

Regarding the disasters that are Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and “Housing,” FOX News broadcast the following report a couple of weeks after the September, 2008, financial meltdown:

Responding later, the ever loquacious Mr. Frank is once again not at a loss for words:

Rebuttal, anybody? Anything to add, Mr. Oxley?

Here’s a quick summary of Mr. Frank’s positions over the years

It will be interesting to see what Frank will say someday regarding the budget deficit crisis currently engulfing us. After all, the acceleration in deficit spending did start when George W. lowered taxes, instituted the Medicare prescription drug program, exploded education spending with “No Child Left Behind,” as well as his continuing of the perennial policy of spending Social Security surpluses on other programs. The Republicans are not innocent bystanders when it comes to Congress’s dereliction of fiscal responsibility. They’ve aided and abetted same when it suited their purposes. After all, hasn’t Obama reminded us that GOP hero Ronald Reagan raised the debt ceiling 18 times during his 8-year tenure in the Oval Office? That’s approximately once every 5.33 months. (No wonder David Stockman quit!) So what’s the problem?

The problem is that both the Democrats and establishment Republicans are pointing fingers at the Tea Party-supported members of Congress who are the only ones committed to not kicking the fiscal can down the road. We are at a unique point in history and politics as usual will not work. As the Fram filter ads once said, “Pay me now or pay me later.” The longer we delay paying the price for our financial profligacy, the worse it will be.

Mr. Boehner? Please don’t hand Mr. Frank more talking points. . .however disingenuous he may be.

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