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START and First RespondersPosted Monday, December 20, 2010, at 10:40 AM
Republicans over the last week have truly shown their true colors. Nevermind their incessant whining over the amount of work they are having to do during this Lame Duck session. It is nothing new (though they would like you to believe that it is), they passed the Bush tax cuts during a Lame Duck session, they impeached President Clinton during a Lame Duck session. So to hear their constant whining over this particular session of Lame Duck is at best funny at worst absolutely pathetic.
There are two instances, though, where their true colors and acts of obstructionism are truly shining. The first is the new START Treaty.
The most common excuses they have given for not wanting to vote for this treaty is that it is being shoved down their throats. The fact that they are absolutely lying about this is somehow being missed by the "lame stream media". If this Treaty had been agreed upon by the United States and the Russian Federation in November they might have a point. This Treaty, however, has been sitting there for them and everyone to read for eight months. So for them to come out and lie and say that they have not had time to read it is really just completely childish.
Here is the link to the actual treaty:
Not wanting to be outdone, Senator McCain had issues with the preamble to the treaty and wanted to change it. A gullible person would fall for McCain's excuses how the preamble only hurts the United States. His former running mate sure fell for it. What this really was though was just a cowardly act. McCain is planning on voting against the START Treaty, which has been championed by the last three presidents (two of them Republicans), several Secretary of States, and a large portion of men and women who worked for President Reagan (who signed the first START Treaty). If McCain would have been successful at getting the preamble changed the entire Treaty would have had to have been approved the Russia before Congress could vote on it.
Fortunately the Senate defeated McCain's attempts at changing the Preamble. The vote has yet to happen, the Treaty will probably pass but a huge chunk of obstructionist Republicans will once again vote no just to vote no.
The other bill that the Republicans were actually able to defeat was a bill designed to help First Responders who were at Ground Zero on the day and weeks following 9/11. This is the second time in the last few months that Republicans have stood together and told first responders that Congress was not going to help them.
Their excuses for voting against this bill have ranged from just plain silly to immature and childish.
The saddest part of this defeat was that the media apparently was too busy to even discuss it. It has been just nine years since 9/11 and we are already forgetting it. Jon Stewart, naturally, let loose on the Republicans and even had four responders (all who have a sickness due to 9/11) on his show to discuss the defeat of this bill.
I apologize for the poor video quality
What both cases here point out is that as much as Republicans want to pump themselves up about being the best at National Security, they sorely fall short when they oppose a Treaty for no other reason to oppose it. It also points out that they should never ever bring up 9/11 again. If they are going to continue voting down or filibustering bills that will help the responders who gave their health to help those in need they are only proving that 9/11 is nothing but political for them.
Thank God they got those tax cuts passed, though.
UPDATE Not to be outdone by the Senate, the House Republicans on Thursday defeated a bill that would have classified child marriage as a human rights violation. Their reasons? Money, of course (they can always find money to fun tax cuts for the rich, everything else they struggle finding the money) and it would cause more abortions. There of course is no basis in fact for their argument but no one will challenge them on this baseless and childish claim. Of course, you also have to question the motives of the Democrats who voted no on this as well.
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