Ever wake up in the morning and feel like the world has turned completely upside down?
That's what it felt like to me this morning when I read that the Democrats on Capitol Hill are behind a major new push to not only save the Export-Import Bank, but to expand its lending cap by $20 billion.
In short, the Ex-Im Bank is an entity that serves as a prime example of crony capitalism. It helps businesses, mostly big businesses but not all, at the expense of others. And like every other government agency, politics often plays the biggest role in which businesses get Ex-Im loans and which don't.
But it just doesn't fit the stereotype that it's the Democrats, led by Congressman Steny Hoyer and Congresswoman Maxine Waters, who are trying to stand up to Ex-Im opponent Republican Jeb Hensarling, the Chairman of the House Financial Services Committee.
Of course the Democrats will insist that this move is about saving middle class jobs, and that's going to be their main excuse for lining up behind a government entity that's been the darling of wealthy big businesses for decades. The Republicans who oppose the bank will insist they're really motivated by pro-business free market ideals. And in the end, the Ex-Im bank will still probably get enough bi-partisan support to stay alive. But you can't deny that all of this seems a little topsy turvy.
Or maybe it isn't.
In a political world where campaign donations are the Holy Grail, Democrats have played the crony capitalism game just as well as Republicans from day one. The stereotype that the Republicans are the only ones who cozy up to big business donors has never held up to scrutiny but now there's a stark example of the real truth.
But even someone who's known that truth for some time is still taken aback by what must feel like a bizarro world situation in Washington.