Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Senate Defeats Fast Track Filibuster; Final Passage Almost Certain


"Yes We Can pass a corporate-written 'trade' agreement. My congressional brothers and sisters, with your help ... yes we can."

by Gaius Publius

By a narrow vote (but not as narrow as it looked), the Senate passed a standalone Fast Track bill 60–37. As explained by the floor leaders, three senators had trouble getting to the floor, but their votes were known and announced, so there were no undecideds.

Five Republicans voted to uphold the filibuster for reasons that can be examined later:
  • Susan Collins (R-ME)
  • Ted Cruz (R-TX)
  • Rand Paul (R-KY)
  • Jeff Sessions (R-AL)
  • Richard Shelby (R-AL)
On the Democratic side, because three senators didn't show up to vote, the pro-TPP forces needed 13 Democrats to join with Republicans to defeat the filibuster. And surprise — 13 Democrats showed up:
  • Michael Bennet (D-CO)
  • Maria Cantwell (D-WA)
  • Tom Carper (D-DE)
  • Chris Coons (D-DE)
  • Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)
  • Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND)
  • Tim Kaine (D-VA)
  • Claire McCaskill (D-MO)
  • Patty Murray (D-WA)
  • Bill Nelson (D-FL)
  • Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH)
  • Mark Warner (D-VA)
  • Ron Wyden (D-OR)
There's actually a 14th pro-TPP Democrat who was too afraid to vote until the 60th vote was cast:
  •  Ben Cardin (MD)
 Huff Post explains:
Senate Gives Obama Huge Win On Trade

... Still, the razor-thin margin of the final vote count masks the fact that McConnell had slightly broader support at his disposal. Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) stood by the table in the well of the Senate for most of the vote, waiting for the measure to get across the threshold of 60. As soon as it did, with a vote by Sen. Dean Heller (R-Nev.), Cardin voted no, suggesting he had been willing to vote yes if needed.
Ben Cardin voted Yes on Fast Track on May 22, once the filibuster was broken, a vote that helped send the Fast Track–and–Trade Assistance bill to the House. So Cardin's preferences are clear. He's a quiet Yes — he just doesn't want people to know that if he can help it. If you care, Cardin's up for reelection in 2018.

After the vote, McConnell announced that of the three absent senators, Corker, a Republican, was a Yes. Sherrod Brown then announced that the other two absent senators, Lee (R-UT) and Menendez (D-NJ), were both No votes.

With Cardin, Lee and Menendez factored in, the actual count would have been a still-tight 61–39. Two more Republican defections would have swung it the other way, but I strongly suspect there was an additional very quiet (but obvious if you think about it) Democratic Yes vote in the wings, if it was needed.

So the list of Democratic perps is the 13 above plus Ben Cardin. Perhaps they'll hold a reunion on some K Street–financed yacht once they're all turned out of office. They'll probably have the cash for it. They won't have Obama-money — he'll have surpassed Bill Clinton in parting gifts by that point — but K Street is not known for its poor people either.


Labels: , , , , ,


At 2:03 PM, Anonymous ap215 said...

And now it's our turn to clean up the mess the dysfunctional congress has created. We'll fight back.

At 2:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, I care that Cardin was a quiet 'yes.' And I care that his foreign policy objectives are whatever Natanyahoo wants. I care very much.

At 2:48 PM, Blogger ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

Fucking worthless sellout whores.

Frankly, I don't see much hope of taking the Democratic party back from the bribe eaters, G.P.

Not giving up (yet), but all these years since NAFTA and the deregulation of Wall St., and they've got their hooks into it more than ever.

At 12:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"once they're all turned out of office"

I got a bittersweet chuckle on that one.


Post a Comment

<< Home