Archive for just do it already

VIDEO: McCain: "I don’t understand" why GOP would filibuster gun legislation. Should've stopped after the word "filibuster."

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filibuster cartoon reid

What a surprise! John McCain on a Sunday talk show! But I digress.

Think Progress has a post up titled, McCain: ‘I Don’t Understand’ Why GOP Would Filibuster Gun Legislation.

That should have read, "McCain: 'I don't understand why the GOP would filibuster.'" Most of us sure don't understand why the GOP would filibuster 99% of what they freaking filibuster.

Well, actually we do. Their raison d'être is obstruction, their goal (other than acquiring more money and power, that is) is to tarnish President Obama and his legacy, and their appallingly gleeful reliance on perpetual blocking comes from the successes they've had.

Did I mention that Harry Reid (and many Democrats) is aiding and abetting them? I did? Good.

Here is the entire Face the Nation interview. Relevant segment starts at about 9:45:

McCain:

I don’t understand it. The purpose of the United States Senate is to debate and to vote and to let the people know where we stand.

Schieffer:

So you’d encourage Republicans not to filibuster?

McCain:

I would not only encourage it, I don’t understand it. What are we afraid of? ... Why would we not want...  Why not take it up and amend it and debate? The American people would profit from it. I do not understand why United States senators want to block debate when the leader has said we can have amendments.

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Report: Sen. Harry Reid "not inclined to use" tools he has to overcome filibuster of background check bill

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new rules 2

It was only yesterday that I posted, "Harry Reid hints at filibuster 'nuclear option'… again. Try using it this time, Harry." I peppered that post with comparisons of Reid to an ineffectual parent plus comments like:

-- But Harry shook hands instead, although he has threatened to revisit filibuster reform from time to time, getting Democratic hopes up, like Lucy pulling the football away from Charlie Brown. We’ll believe it when we see it.

-- Of course you will, dear.

-- I will NOT get my hopes up, I will NOT get my hopes up…

-- That would be novel. Just do it already.

From the tweets and comments I received, we all had the same reaction. And for good reason.

Roll Call:

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has the tools he needs to overcome any initial filibuster of a firearms background check bill, but he may not be inclined to use them.

Indeed, the Nevada Democrat is biding his time, even as President Barack Obama embarks on an aggressive new push for votes on a variety of gun-related measures, including background checks and a new prohibition on assault weapons.

The trouble for Reid is the new process — established in January through modest filibuster rules changes — may have a fatal flaw in practice when the Nevada Democrat actually wants the bill involved to become law.

And what might that fatal flaw be? Reid's New Rules do not prevent senators from blocking a bill from passing once it’s up for debate.

Did I mention that he still needs at least 60 votes? That he still needs a super majority? That real filibuster reform is still just a twinkle in sane and reasonable Democrats' eyes? And that Republicans despise compromise so much that they won't even use the word?

Here's what "compromise" means to the GOP:

Here's what Harry Reid means to those of us who are fed up:

peanuts lucy charlie brown football 2Here's what many of you may be doing after reading this post:

banghead

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Harry Reid hints at filibuster "nuclear option"... again. Try using it this time, Harry.

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peanuts lucy charlie brown football

Harry Reid reminds me of those ineffectual, weary parents who you see in a public place repeatedly scolding his annoyingly obstinate, uncontrollable toddler, saying things like, "If you keep that up, you'll get punished." Then, "Just keep pushing, young man, and there will be no McFlurry dessert for you." Followed by, "I'm warning you."

And then does nothing.

And the kid keeps misbehaving.

In that scenario, Daddy Dearest was about as effective as Gene Wilder intended (not) to be as Willy Wonka:

Which brings us to the unprecedented use of the filibuster by the GOP, their favorite weapon, the one they've used to obstruct just about every proposal by President Obama and the Democrats... including judicial nominations.

Over the years, we've witnessed the Reagan/Bush conservative judicial trajectory and subsequent decline (see: Scalia, Antonin et al) of our judiciary, and as a result, our democracy, civil rights, and legal system. And since Obama took office, his judicial nominations have been moving at a glacial pace.

He did manage to nominate the first openly gay black man to sit on a federal district court, the first Asian American lesbian, and the first South Asian. But at least 35 nominees are waiting for the Senate to vote, and there are still 50 more vacancies. That's called GOP "payback."

So Dick Durbin said, “We need to revisit” the filibuster rules and Senate Dems thought Harry Reid should revisit filibuster reform.

All that because Harry Reid insisted on that "gentleman’s agreement" with Mitch McConnell, the ridiculous handshake deal he made, saying he was "satisfied" with the Republicans just "agreeing" to be more reasonable.  Remember that?

As you may recall, Jeff Merkley’s plan for reform would not have ended the filibuster, and the Dems would still be able to use the option to filibuster when they are the minority party. It would have taken more effort and transparency to voice opposition, but the filibuster would have remained intact.

But Harry shook hands instead, although he has threatened to revisit filibuster reform from time to time, getting Democratic hopes up, like Lucy pulling the football away from Charlie Brown. We'll believe it when we see it.

Roll Call:

The Nevada Democrat said that while he was “happy” with the modest rules changes adopted in January on a bipartisan basis, the number of pending judicial nominations led him to warn his colleagues of the potential for the chamber’s rules to be modified at any point in the year, not just at the opening of a new Congress.

“All within the sound of my voice, including my Democratic senators and the Republican senators who I serve with, should understand that we as a body have the power on any given day to change the rules with a simple majority, and I will do that if necessary,” Reid said on Nevada Public Radio.

Of course you will, dear.

peanuts lucy charlie brown football 2

Harry:

"We made changes, but the time will tell whether they’re big enough. I’m going to wait and build a case. If the Republicans in the Senate don’t start approving some judges and don’t start helping get some of these nominations done, then we’re going to have to take more action.”

"Just keep pushing, young man, and there will be no McFlurry dessert for you."

But it does get more promising (I will NOT get my hopes up, I will NOT get my hopes up...). Reid said it's not only about judges, but also the nomination of Richard Cordray to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

"Now, we have the Republican-dominated D.C. Court of Appeals who have said, look, the president can’t even do recess appointments now,” Reid said. “So, we’re left with few alternatives, and we’re going to have to move forward and do something to change that.

Yes, we're going to have to do something. We've had to do something for years now.

"If you keep that up, you'll get punished."

That would be novel. Just do it already.

mitch mcconnell filibuster cartoon get rid of Obama

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VIDEO-- Republican consultant: Voter ID laws, long lines "help our side."

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Former Florida GOP leaders, including Charlie Crist, recently said that voter suppression was the reason for new state election laws.

In fact, former Florida Republican Party chairman Jim Greer came right out and said that state Republicans tried to suppress the black vote and called his fellow GOPers “whack-a-do, right-wing crazies.”

Via HuffPo, Republican campaign consultant Scott Tranter was on a panel hosted by the Pew Center and came right out and said this:

"A lot of us are campaign officials -- or campaign professionals -- and we want to do everything we can to help our side. Sometimes we think that's voter ID, sometimes we think that's longer lines -- whatever it may be."

Or as those on the right would put it, "How dare you accuse us of voter suppression! You're just imagining things."

Good grief, what more do voters need? This party is admitting out loud what bottom feeders they are. They've told Americans over and over again that they'll lie, cheat, and steal in order to win, because they sure can't on their policy positions. So dirty tricks it is then.

However, per Reuters, things may very well change. Attorney General Eric Holder said in a speech in Boston that U.S. election officials should register eligible voters automatically and take steps to reduce the same long lines that the GOP claims to relish.

Just do it already.

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Poll-itics: Swing states swing for gun control

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File under, "Bite Me, NRA." Was that too harsh? Oh well then.

Via Politico:

Voters in key three swing states preferred President Barack Obama to Mitt Romney on gun control issues, and overwhelmingly support a number of gun control measures, according to a poll released Thursday from an advocacy group.

The survey of voters in Virginia, North Carolina and Colorado found 45 percent of voters trusted Obama on gun issues, compared with only 40 percent who trusted Romney. Obama had the largest advantage in Virginia, where he led Romney 48 percent to 39 percent. In Colorado and North Carolina, his edge was tighter: 44 percent to 40 percent and 42 percent to 41 percent.

Surprisingly, and I believe Rachel Maddow mentioned this a couple of weeks ago, the NRA's impact on Election 2012 was minimal:

Two NRA groups spent at least $12 million attacking the president and boosting Romney, according to the Sunlight Foundation.

How'd that work out for you, NRA?

Interestingly, more than 40 percent of voters in all three states said gun control was not a factor in their vote, although "64 percent of Coloradans, 74 percent of North Carolinians and 71 percent of Virginians said gun control should at least be a 'somewhat important' priority for Obama."

Background checks were also a big priority.

So what's taking so long? Must be that GOP obstruction thing.

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Allen West demanded a recount, but Patrick Murphy is "farther ahead" than before the recount began

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Dear Allen West: Please STFU and go away. Love, Laffy

That was as polite as I could be.

Via TC Palm:

Results of recounting more than 37,000 St. Lucie County ballots were announced shortly after 2 p.m. Sunday and preliminary figures given by Canvassing Board member Tod Mowery placed Jupiter Democrat Patrick Murphy farther ahead of Republican Allen West than before the two-day effort began.

Murphy's lead was still outside the 0.5 percent difference that would require a recount. The unofficial final count was 65,841 votes for Murphy and 52,704 for West.

"We are still evaluating how to handle this," West campaign manager Tim Edson said.

Ahem.

As Murphy campaign senior adviser Eric Johnson put it, "This election is over."

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Florida does it again: Votes to be retabulated in Allen West vs. Patrick Murphy congressional race

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Allen West-- yes the same Allen West who stood by and watched as my friend and radio host Nicole Sandler was arrested for committing democracy at one of his events-- still refuses to concede:

(CNN)Republican Rep. Allen West's push to have votes recounted in his Florida congressional race against Democrat Patrick Murphy was granted late Friday when the St. Lucie County Supervisor of Elections ordered a re-tabulation of all eight days of early voting to begin Saturday morning. [...]

West's campaign filed a complaint Tuesday in St. Lucie County, calling for the court to order a recount of all early votes in the county in his race for re-election. Allen's request was initially denied Friday afternoon, but later that evening a canvassing board ordered the retabulation, citing sufficient concern to grant the re-examination of the votes, according to CNN affiliate WPBF in West Palm Beach.

As of today, Murphy leads by just over 1,900 votes. Meanwhile, Democrats are accusing Florida Governor Rick Scott of improperly interfering to help him.  DNC chair, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, flat out accused him of intervening:

All votes in this election were counted fairly and accurately, and Allen West has lost beyond the mandatory recount range.  Having Governor Scott intervene is outrageous and inappropriate. After disenfranchising Florida voters by cutting down early voting days and creating extraordinarily long lines at the polls, Governor Scott is now trying to blatantly overturn an election result he disagreed with and undermine Gertrude Walker, a three-decade veteran of the St. Lucie County Supervisor of Elections office.  Governor Scott needs to remove himself from this process immediately.

And Democratic Rep. Alcee Hastings  added that "Governor Rick Scott’s attempt to undermine and pressure St. Lucie County Supervisor of Elections Gertrude Walker – just because he would prefer to keep Allen West in Congress – is yet another blatant display of his willingness to disregard the rule of law for political gain.”

Yet there Scott was, pretending like he had nothing to do with those terrible lines and all those disenfranchised voters! He had the jaw-droppingly, unmitigated, hypocritical gall to demand a fix to the voting problems that he, Mr. Voter Purge, helped create.

More from Hastings:

It was Governor Scott who cut early voting hours, created long lines during early voting, and imposed unprecedented burdens on county election offices.  Despite his repeated efforts to disenfranchise voters, the people of Florida’s 18th district chose Patrick Murphy to represent them in Washington, and by a margin that does not necessitate a recount.

The rest of his statement, along with more on this story, can be found at the Sun Sentinel.

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