You Have To Scrape The Bottom Of The Barrel To Find Someone Who Opposes Highways And Bridges
Would YOUR congressman vote for this? 29 just did
Yesterday Congress was back in session and they passed an important-- and con-controversial-- amendment to restore the Highway Trust Fund. The legislation transfers $8 billion from the Treasury's general fund to the highway fund, ensuring that construction projects won't be interrupted. It had already passed overwhelmingly in the Senate and it passed overwhelmingly in the House as well, 376 for and only 29 against. Every single Democrat voted to pass it, so all 20 who voted no were radical right extremist Republicans. It's important to remember that the infusion comes as the trust fund, which relies on declining revenue from the federal gas tax, verges on going broke, threatening road and bridge safety and maintenance in all 50 states. Aside from offering specters of more collapsing bridges and axles damaged from potholes, failure to pass the amendment would have meant thousands and thousands of more workers dumped onto the already expanding unemployment lines that are such an integral part of the Bush Economic Miracle.
The 29 no votes came directly from the bottom of the congressional barrel, the worst of the worst. Even the reprehensible Republican leaders like Boehner and Blunt voted for this. Against it were a motley assortment of two-legged garbage hell-bent on destroying America, human detritus which offers very real threats to the well-being of American families. By all means, see the whole list here-- as well as the list of the cowards like Mean Jean Schmidt (R-OH), John Culberson (R-TX), Tom Feeney (R-FL) Nick Lampson (D-TX), Darrell Issa (R-CA) and John Peterson (R-PA)-- who were afraid to come down one way or the other.
There are a couple of extremists on the list of "no" voters who consistently vote against their constituents' interests and who need to be singled out for this vote. Mike Pence (R-IN), John Shadegg (R-AZ), Patrick McHenry (R-NC), Virginia Foxx (R-NC) and Scott Garrett (R-NJ) all come from way at the bottom of that barrel I was referring to-- and all can be defeated in November. I asked the Blue America-endorsed candidate in northern New Jersey, Dennis Shulman, if he was aware that every single New Jersey member of Congress-- both the Democrats and the Republicans favored the legislation and voted for it-- except Garrett, the extremist lunatic he's running against. He knew-- and he wasn't surprised since this is far from the first time Garrett has voted against common sense legislation that all the other Republicans in New Jersey supported. "Once again, Scott Garrett stands nearly alone and against all serious people, Democrats or Republicans alike," Dennis told us. "Who opposes public safety and endangers jobs after a major bridge collapse and amidst the Bush-Garrett recession? Only an extremist whose ideology constitutes a threat to us all. Garrett's extremism is of national concern. We can't solve problems in this country with roadblocks like Scott Garrett standing in the way."
UPDATE: THE CASE OF THE MISSING MEAN JEAN
In passing we mentioned that Mean Jean Schmidt (R-OH) had missed the vote, which was a disgraceful dereliction of duty.
It turns out, it wasn't a dereliction at all-- it was much worse. You may recall that Schmidt was one of the purveyors of the absurd lie that China was drilling from Cuba into American oil reserves. Even after Republican Senator Mel Martinez called her nonsense an urban myth, she has continued to push it on low-information voters who think congressmembers are good sources of truthful information. Well, even though over 12,000 jobs were at stake in Ohio-- a state where they can do without more job losses-- Schmidt missed the vote, claiming she had to be with her pregnant daughter in Cincinnati.
Fair enough; they're the family values party and we can't expect a mother to disregard the needs of her pregnant daughter, right? The vote was at 4:18 PM. The Cincinnati Enquirer did some poking around and caught Schmidt in one of her series of blatant lies. Turns out that Schmidt was still lingering around the House chamber after it adjourned at 4:34 PM. She stayed to take part in a "Drill Here Now" stunt that Big Oil pats Republican members of Congress to stage. That means she was home with her pregnant daughter in Cincinnati at 4:18 when a bill that would save 12,000 Ohio jobs was voted on, but back in the Chamber between 4:34 and 6:29 to participate in this GOP circus act?
The McCain campaign finds nothing wrong with that and is promising to add Schmidt-- who they originally passed over-- to the "Sarah Palin Truth Squad." According to Double Talk Express spokesperson, Paul Lindsay, McCain thinks Schmidt is a "great voice" and "an accomplished leader in her own right... and we're fortunate to have her help."
On the other hand, folks in southwest Ohio would be far better off looking for help from Schmidt's Democratic opponent, Dr. Victoria Wulsin, who came close to beating her in 2006 and is likely to do so in November. Blue America has prioritized her race as one of the most important in the country. You can contribute here, unless you want to see liars like Mean Jean Schmidt continue disgracing the United States Congress.