Thursday, February 28, 2013

How Are Those Wars Against Americans Working Out For You, Republicanos?


The Republican War On Education, the Republican War On Immigration, the Republican War On Science, the Republican War On Gays, the Republican War On Women, the Republican War On Democracy... this has all been going very badly for them. Not only did they lose the presidential election, they were devastated in the Senate elections where "sure" wins in Missouri, Indiana, North Dakota, Montana and Wisconsin turned into routs almost entirely due to their wars against... well, the American people. Even the incompetently-run DCCC managed to chalk up a net win of a few seats against them in House races.

And since the election, it's actually gotten much worse for them. The safe gerrymandered districts allow the craziest among them to spout all kinds of nonsense with no fears of accountability and the results were reported yesterday in the latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll showing how Americans have come to the conclusion the Republican Party is just plain out of touch... on everything.
The poll finds that Democrats hold a double digit lead over Republicans on many major issues facing the country-- and finds solid majority support for key initiatives on Obama’s second term agenda. Dems hold a 22 point advantage on looking out for the middle class; an 18 point advantage on dealing with Medicare; a 16 point advantage on health care; a 14 point advantage on Social Security; a 10 point advantage on energy policy; a seven point advantage on immigration; and a three point advantage on the GOP signature issue of taxes... Meanwhile, Americans support raising the minimum wage by 58-36;  they want gun laws to be made stricter by 61-34; and they support giving undocumented immigrants a path to legal status by 54-42.

Strikingly, the poll finds that 64 percent say the GOP is “emphasizing a partisan approach in a way that does not unify the country,” versus only 22 percent who say the party is “emphasizing unifying the country.” For Obama those numbers are the other way around-- 43-48.
Oh, the more strident, dramatic, hysterical, delusional and extreme they are, the more their own crazy little base loves them. But normal people are washing their hands of them entirely. The GOP is stuck in a bind of their own making. To please the Fox/Hate Talk Radio brainwashees, they have to say and do things that alienate the vast majority of voters outside the Confederate die-hards. The hard right, which controls the party, just excluded the most popular (and electable) Republican Governor, Chris Cristie, from their annual CPAC convention. They really are a self-defeating mess, wallowing in their own patheticness, self-pity and persecution complex.

And that brings us to the painful drawn-out charade the Republicans put themselves through as part of their misguided War On Women. They're like moths drawn to an open flame. After the Senate passed the Violence Against Women Act two weeks ago with a huge bipartisan majority-- including every Republican woman and conservatives like Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Mike Crapo (R-ID), Jerry Moran (R-KS), Pat Toomey (R-PA), Dan Coats (R-IN), Roger Wicker (R-MS) and David Vitter (R-LA)-- Boehner and Cantor found themselves in a very awkward situation again. Their extremist fringe didn't want to support the bill because... we''ll because they're misogynist hatemongers. But mainstream non-Confederate Republicans knew they had to support it and didn't want to see ads next year accusing them of favoring violence against women. I mean, imagine how the Ohio Republicans who try to pass themselves off as vaguely mainstream, like Dave Joyce, Steve Chabot, Bill Johnson, Michael Turner, Pat Tiberi, Jim Renacci and Steve Stivers, would react to an ad in their respective districts that said "Both Ohio senators, Democrat Sherrod Brown and Republican Rob Portman came together and helped pass the Violence Against Women Act. Why did our congressman vote against it?"

So here's Boehner looking at the tattered remnants of the Hastert Rule, by which the leadership woudn't bring up bills unless the majority of Republicans supported them. Problem is, the majority of House Republicans don't support the Violence Against Women Act. So Boehner came up with some scheme to pass a bogus bill, instead of the Senate bill and then just cry that there was a deadlock and it's the Senate's fault and Obama's fault and the libruls fault.

However, a brilliant tactician on the Democratic side figured out how to get the Senate version onto the floor-- the Democratic minority's Motion to Recommit. And guess what-- it would have been the first time Boehner lost as Motion to Recommit as Speaker. PANIC time for the broken down old drunk! He immediately changed the GOP strategy. As Sahil Kapur reported yesterday, "after nearly a year of resistance that has damaged them politically with women voters, House Republicans have found a clever way to back down on the reauthorization of an expanded Violence Against Women Act."

Boehner's puppet head of the Rules Committee, Pete Sessions, ruled on Monday evening that if the GOP version fails-- it will-- the House votes on the Senate version, the version every Democrat and dozens of Republicans will support. Another huge rip in the poor shredded Hastert Rule.
Here’s how Democrats expect it to play out.

After the House finishes debating the GOP-version of the bill on Wednesday and Thursday, it will get a vote, but will fail to muster enough votes for passage due to conservative and Democratic opposition. So the Senate-passed bill will get a vote instead, and Democrats as well as a faction of more moderate Republicans will carry it to victory. Then it will go straight to President Obama’s desk for his signature.

“[Rules Committee Chairman] Pete Sessions laid it out in not so many words that this is what the majority’s plan is,” a House Democratic aide said Tuesday evening. “They’re anticipating that their version gets voted down. But it’s clear the Senate bill will pass with flying colors.”

A House Republican leadership aide didn’t dispute this characterization, but said that after the Rules Committee meeting Tuesday, the House “is still expected to take up a strong Violence Against Women Act Reauthorization later this week.”

After months of holding firm, Democrats are anticipating victory.

“We are on the cusp of a huge victory for every single woman who has been told over the past 16 months that they didn’t deserve VAWA protections,” Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) told TPM in a statement Tuesday night. “I applaud those moderate Republicans in the House who are ready to put politics aside and help us get this over the finish line. I know that the broad coalition of women and advocates who I’ve worked with over the course of this long effort have their fingers crossed and will be watching closely.”

The House Democratic aide piled on.

“This is the third time in the last two months that John Boehner has tried so hard to appease the crazy wing of his party, and it’s the third time that he’s failed to do it,” said the aide, referring to votes to avoid the fiscal cliff and to provide Hurricane Sandy relief, which passed with mostly Democratic support. “There’s no bridge that he can construct between what the tea party caucus wants in Congress and what the rest of his partners in government are open to doing.”
So this morning they voted, first on the GOP fake version and then on the actual Senate bill. Their own crazy thing failed 166-257, only 2 old school, right-wing, misogynistic Democrats (Lipinski and McIntyre) voted with the GOP on it. 60 Republicans voted with the Democratic leadership against it. (Boehner didn't vote.) Immediately afterwards, they voted on the Senate bill and it passed overwhelmingly 286-138. All 138 votes favoring violence against women were Republicans, of course, but 87 Republicans voted with the Democrats-- Boehner's biggest defeat so far. Almost every Republican in a vulnerable district voted with the Democrats-- even the most senior GOP leaders who have been given free reelection passes by DCCC head Steve Israel-- like Paul Ryan (R-WI), Buck McKeon (R-CA), Fred Upton (R-MI), Dave Camp (R-MI), Ed Royce (R-CA), John Kline (R-MN), Greg Walden (R-OR), Mike Rogers (R-MI), Darrell Issa (R-CA), and Chief Republican Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-CA). No, they're not suddenly liberal; they just afraid-- unlike the crackpots (mostly from the South) who were proud to let their freak flags in their War On Women fly.

El Presidente: "I was pleased to see the House of Representatives come together and vote to reauthorize and strengthen the Violence Against Women Act. Over more than two decades, this law has saved countless lives and transformed the way we treat victims of abuse. Today’s vote will go even further by continuing to reduce domestic violence, improving how we treat victims of rape, and extending protections to Native American women and members of the LGBT community. The bill also reauthorizes the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, providing critical support for both international and domestic victims of trafficking and helping ensure traffickers are brought to justice. I want to thank leaders from both parties-- especially Leader Pelosi, Congresswoman Gwen Moore and Senator Leahy-- for everything they’ve done to make this happen. Renewing this bill is an important step towards making sure no one in America is forced to live in fear, and I look forward to signing it into law as soon as it hits my desk."

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At 12:17 PM, Blogger John said...

Actually the Republican War on Democracy appears about to get a real boost from the fascist-dominated SCOTUS Inc.

It's hearing a Voting Rights Act case and seems ready to gut the most import provisions of the act.

Four articles currently at

John Puma


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