13 Republicans cross aisle as Senate ...

13 Republicans cross aisle as Senate OKs jobs bill

There are 9 comments on the TwinCities.com story from Feb 24, 2010, titled 13 Republicans cross aisle as Senate OKs jobs bill. In it, TwinCities.com reports that:

The Senate on Wednesday passed a jobs bill that one senator described as "modest," but one that Democrats hope will be the first in a series of attempts to jump-start hiring nationwide.

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#1 Feb 25, 2010
The real issue is just how many of the 13 voted to close off the fillibuster. The sick party of hypocrits. Just like the stimulus bill. Vote for a fillibuster but then take credit when the money is spent in your state after the bill passes. Typical REP hypocrits. The Party of NO, NOTHING and Stupidity.
Lux et Veritas

Minneapolis, MN

#2 Feb 25, 2010

Scott Brown's Shrewd Vote

...Critics of Brown's vote haven't been listening to what he's been saying. During the election campaign, Brown was asked where he fit on the Republican political spectrum. He identified himself as "a Massachusetts Republican." In an interview with FrumForum, he said, "I'm the closest thing [Bay Staters] will get to a Reagan Democrat." He also said, "I've always been an independent voter, and when I have to cross party lines, I do. I don't usually care what my party says."

Brown made clear from the start that he would not vote as a movement conservative or a leadership lapdog. He'd go his own way, regardless of where the leadership or the GOP base tried to drag him. And that's a good thing. He is, after all, from Massachusetts, remember?

With the jobs bill -- his first major vote -- Brown established his Washington identity. He proclaimed himself an independent-minded Republican who will oppose party leaders and work with Democrats. In Massachusetts, that is the only way he survives politically.
He also kept two important campaign promises: 1) that he will be independent of his party, and 2) that he would vote for legislation to create jobs. Now, policy wonks know that this jobs bill is ill-suited to job creation and better alternatives exist. But listen to Brown's explanation: "I supported this measure because it does contain some tax relief that will help Massachusetts businesses put people back to work."

Brown has signaled to his constituents that he voted for tax cuts, just as he promised in the campaign. He is from Massachusetts. That's huge.
He also said that if the bill comes back from the House "full of pork, waste, fraud and abuse, I reserve the right to vote against it." That's also important. The House version of the bill is 10 times larger --$154 billion vs.$15 billion -- than the Senate bill. With his post-vote statement, Brown positioned himself to vote against the final bill on the grounds that it is too large and wasteful. Outstanding.

With one vote, the holder of Ted Kennedy's old seat just established himself as a supporter of tax cuts and an opponent of wasteful, bloated federal spending. And he did that while opposing Republican leadership and defining himself as a political independent. That was not traitorous; that was brilliant.

Scott Brown is a Republican. From Massachusetts. If conservatives want him to be able to stay in Washington so he can vote against Obamacare and other boondoggles, then they shouldn't criticize him for voting like a Republican from Massachusetts. The movement for limited government is strengthened by Brown holding that seat. To keep it, he has to vote for some things conservatives find distasteful. As long as he's voting for small distasteful things so he can stick around to vote against the big ones, that's a win for the movement.

Lamoni, IA

#3 Feb 25, 2010
Mike - you are correct as a matter of generality and analysis. Not correct as a matter of specifics and political maneuvering. First of all, it is necessary to find a way to re-appeal to the independents and Republicans who did vote for Obama - and there were many of those in the Iowa caucuses in January of 2008, as well as in the general election. Some way must be found to find those hopeful persons again, and get their advice on waht it was they expected, and educate them as to the difficuties of getting certain things accomplished, with a less than 60 vote supermajority in the Senate. I agree with the folks who look at the specific Senators who are blocking the debates and votes with support of a filibuster, until they get their own way on some demand. Lieberman and Nelson seem like the most reasonable targets for that criticism. We need to tell those who were hopeful in 2008 that the jo b did not get done in the Senate, in just one election, and that they really need to elect 67 real Democrats to get the change they want. Democrats need to be much more attuned to educating people about realities, and not too dependent on charisma and hope. It takes 67 votes to change the filibuster rule, according to some, even though Cheney and some GOP leaders threatened the so-called "nuclear option" - the Vice President ruing in an iffy manner and then getting upheld by a majority of 5l or even 50, with his being the deciding tie-breaking vote. Democrats need to pick up seats in Florida, New Hampshire, Ohio, and Missouri. Instead they find themselves in difficulty in Illinois, Delaware, Colorado, Nevada, maybe Connecticut, and Arkansas. Democratrs will not win if it is framed as the party of No versus the party of too complex, too "wonky" (it is difficult to understand these big bills - so it makes them easy to misrepresent, by dishonest Republicans - which not all of them are).

Lamoni, IA

#4 Feb 25, 2010
It is important to look at the split in the GOP and the conservative movement, and to let that fight between the ordinary right-wing and the nut-case right-wing play out in ways that reveal the extremism of the GOP. In Florida and Texas, these conflicts are in play now, and in Arizona as well. The crazy fringe - the extremist dittoheads, the tea party activists and organizers and manipulaters (not all the rank-and-file, who are mostly uninformed and angry), and the town-hall disrupters - is taking aim at Scott Brown now (e is not as nuts as they had hoped) and at MCCain and at George Bush, in retrospect. Certainly at Crist and Kay Bailey Hutchinson.

Lamoni, IA

#5 Feb 25, 2010
Lux - thanks for the link and the interesting quote from the article. One of the Republicans whom I refer to as being not crazy is Lisa Murkowski. When Palin was playing the demagogue and repeating accusations from the Betsy bimbo about death panels (sorry, forgot her last hname, and if folks can attack Pelosi's resistance to aging, it is fair game to attack this old blonde!), Lis Murkowski said, in essence (amd aimed clearly at Palin) "there is enough wrong about the health care bill that we do not have to lie about it."

Lamoni, IA

#6 Feb 25, 2010
The proprer role for responsible Republicans and conservatives would be to offer an alternative that is plausible. We need to be debating Representive Ryan's bill on health care (more costs put on the poor and middle class) and GOP proposals for jobs bills (more tax cuts for the super-rich).Democrats need to force the debate on the GOP options, so Republicans do not get by with just attacking the Democratic proposals. If Lux and his type insist on rational debate, including specific GOP proposals being put forward, it would help the country to face issues - but my guess is that the right-wing nuts will soon be caling them RINP's if they do not make hatred their primary motivation and blocking Obama their top strategy. Soon you will be labeled RINO's.

Lamoni, IA

#8 Feb 25, 2010
apologies for typos. anyhow, thanks to Lux for bringing that article and the quotes from it to our attention. I may disagree with a few points, but I will let the vicious right-wing extremists be the ones to actually attack you and this Spectator writer.

Lamoni, IA

#9 Feb 25, 2010
I think that as election time comes, there wil be more like the anonymous person who hit the judgeits who will revert to supporting any sort of Republican at all, rather than a Demcorat, in the confidence that even a portential moderate like Scott brown will mostly vote against Democratic legislation. the opportunists like Dick Armey, who are funding and leading the tea-party movement (whether the rank-and-file know it or not) have as their ultimate agenda the intent of bringing the right-wing nut-cases to the voting booth to vote against Democrats, and insufficient numbers for Republicans. Note that the real alternate - Ron Paul - got 31% of the polling results at the recent convention, and all the stalking horses for the eventual GOP nominee got 69%. I do not dismiss ron Paul as one of the nut-cases, by the wary. He is too muck of a real maverick, and his views need to be discussed point by point. He is ideological, and I disagree with his austrian school of theoretical free-market economics, which has little contact with reality, in this day and age - but he is not himself a hater, no matter what types he appeals to in his strange coalition - which includes some very sophisticated folks, but mostly not. At least he should be a third option in the GOP, along with the opportunists and the nasties. It is too much to hope that the moderates or liberals who used to be in the GOP could be a viable option. I would prefer that they lead the GOP, but since they are not even welcome there, I advocate welcoming them completely into the Democratic party, or at least the Administration - that includes Chuck Hagel, Jim Leach, Colin Powell, and a few others. Hagel should be in the White House foreign policy meetings and military decision meetings, along with Clinton, Biden, Obama, Holbrooke and the National Security experts. He actually fought in a war. He has a good idea of what the military is being asked to do, and how much sacrifice they are asked to make. The person I would kick out to make room for paying his salary as a top adviser - would be Rahm Emanuel, who should go back to chicago, and atry to get clean honest Demcorats elected to office there. That is a task just made for him! He can use the full range of his vocabulary there, I suspect. I think Podesta would be a better Chief of Staff, or Plouffe, after the election.

Lamoni, IA

#10 Feb 25, 2010
in sufficient numbers to elect Republicans, I meant. that typo in previous comment changed the meaning. That is what Armey and the other forces behind the tea-party movement are aiming for - highly energized, anti-Democratic voters in November. They will ride that tiger, and can stay on top of it, as long as they are mostly a party of No. It is only when their Establishment types begin to protect the big special interests, and the super-rich, including the big bankers with their big bonuses, that they will run into a bit of trouble with the right-wing populist types, who hate both the big bankers and the government. It will be interesting to see the way it plays out coming soon in Iowa - first caucus state - when Presidential candidates start coming here. Even before 2010 elections, since campaigning here for Republicans is a way to get known and get support for the 2011 straw poll that is important publicity in Iowa. I suspect that Scott Brown would be a strong candidate himself, in this state.

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