Tom reminds us that it was the Bush administration that tried and failed to regulate Fannie. More than that, there were prescient warnings from the administration that the prospect of the inevtiable bailout would enable their excessively risky business, which the Democrats hailed. Fannie and Freddie don’t deserve to be bailed out, but rather phased out. But it’s still the case the ordinary guy shouldn’t be forced to bear most of the burden of all this irresponsibility.
And just to show you how quickly my thinking can "evolve," it’s no longer clear to me that voting NO yesterday was all that stupid. Individual representatives didn’t think their vote should cost them their seats, and their calls and letters really were suggesting that they would have to pay the ultimate price. Meanwhile, the Democrats can’t afford to act without the Republicans, given the unpopularity of any kind of bailout. So the Republicans remain in a good bargaining position and can certainly get more concessions.
A genuinely bipartisan deal would create a situation where neither party could campaign for or against the bailout. It seems that Pelosi really did violate the "subtext" of the deal, if deal there was. McCain would obviously benefit from getting the perception of crisis behind us, and by anything tht would improve the economy short-term. But maybe the Democrats don’t obviously benefit from extended national reflection on why the bailout is necessary.