Jackie Gingrich Cushman

Audacity and transparency are running rampant in Washington. Elected officials are transparent about their audacity.

President Obama ran on the promise of hope and change. If voters would dare to be hopeful, he would steer the country toward change we could all believe in. The goal was for Washington to end business as usual and for transparency to rule. Obama championed the idea that we were entering an era of post-partisan politics, when the American people's interests would trump those of special interests.

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But here's what we got: Instead of carrying out business as usual, elected officials are audacious, transparent about engaging in deal-making for votes. Instead of entering an era of post-partisan politics, we have entered a time when a lone Republican vote is being championed as bipartisan legislation. Instead of change we can believe in, we are being asked to change what we believe.

Voters don't want the current health care bill. According to the latest Rasmussen tracking poll, 55 percent of voters nationwide are opposed to the health care bill and 41 percent favor it. But Washington is determined to deliver it anyway, in an unseemly manner.

If you examine the underlying belief system of the current administration and Democrats in Congress, that they know better than the average voter, and more government is the answer, no matter the question, it should not be surprising that they are pushing through unwanted legislation. They are simply implementing their beliefs.

The White House is declaring victory. "Health care reform is not a matter of if," said White House press secretary Robert Gibbs, "health care reform now is a matter of when."

Speaker Nancy Pelosi, in regal red, began the celebratory news conference after the house approved its version of the health care bill on Nov. 7 with the exclamation, "Oh, what a night!"

The final vote for the House Democratic health care bill included 176 Republicans and 39 Democrats voting no, with 219 Democrats and one Republican voting yes.

Pelosi called this a bipartisan victory.

Now that's audacious.

Jackie Gingrich Cushman

Jackie Gingrich Cushman is a speaker, syndicated columnist, socialpreneur, and author of "The Essential American: 25 Documents and Speeches Every American Should Own," and co-author of “The 5 Principles for a Successful Life: From Our Family to Yours”.