This was the incredibly condescending way in which Press Secretary Tony Snow characterized the Congressional debate during last Thursday's White House press briefing:
SNOW: ... this is an expression of opinion on the part of members of Congress. And therefore, it is appropriate to let them go ahead and express it. You don't want to — this is not something where you negotiate and say, Senator, that's not your view. It doesn't work that way. I mean, a lot of times when you're dealing with a piece of legislation, you can sit down and you can try to work with folks. As a matter of fact, we made it clear to members of the House and Senate that we do want to work with them and share our views. But on something where they're trying to express their views, they're their views.In other words, the White House — or Snow at least — views Congress as sort of a highly paid debating society that is so irrelevant that it's not even worth trying to influence them as they prepare to "express their views."
REPORTER: But every vote is an expression of opinion. I mean, by that argument you could say —
SNOW: Come on, Jennifer, no —
REPORTER: — we should never try to convince someone to vote a way that they don't —
SNOW: I'm sorry, but when you're talking about the difference, for instance, on Social Security, or health care, or energy, you're dealing with specific provisions that have policy implications where an administration will be called upon to enact that law. This is different. It's a non-binding resolution that we think members ought to look at carefully to see what kind of message they're sending, but on the other hand, we don't think that it's appropriate to say, don't express your views. They've decided to do so, and it's appropriate.