"They were right," admitted Rep. Adam Putnam of Florida, the third-ranking Republican in the House, when asked the difference between what Democrats are doing and the tactics used by the previous Republican majority to undercut criticism of the war.No, congressman, it was not a game. "It" was the nation's business and you failed.
"It was a game and we got beat. ... It was clearly a ploy, and I think we paid a price for stuff like that in November."
Admitting past sins -- while pointing them out in the new Democratic majority -- seems to be one step to sobriety and voter sympathy in the long run-up to elections in 2008. Two other steps in the program are retrenching behind themes of fairness and fiscal conservatism that helped Republicans take power in 1994.Fairness and responsibility - concepts the Republicans failed to grasp in all the years they controlled Congress.
But, now they see the light. On with the game. Right, congressman?
"We can talk about the fiscal restraint piece of the Republican brand," said Putnam, chairman of the House Republican Conference. "It becomes more comfortable ground for us to stand on. They're the ones that have to balance" competing interests.
Update - Feb. 9, 2007 - The Republicans' water boy continues his "game" with more trash talk:
Rep. Adam Putnam of Florida, the No. 3 Republican leader, called Pelosi's desire for a large transport plane "an extravagance of power that the taxpayers won't swallow." [....]More on the story . . . .
But (White House spokesman) Snow on Thursday said the negotiations over Pelosi's transport have been conducted solely by the House sergeant-at-arms and the Pentagon.
- House security chief: Pelosi didn't ask for plane
- DeLay sees Putnam as 'worthy successor'
- WSJ raises questions about 2003 Putnam trip
- Top GOP job pushes and pulls Putnam