Friday, October 21, 2011

Senate Showtime

As expected, Senate Republicans and three sorta Democrats filibustered the Obama jobs bill that would have funded teachers and firefighters.

The final tally on the late Thursday vote was 50-50, with Sens. Mark Pryor (D-AR), Joe Lieberman (I-CT), and Ben Nelson (D-NE) voting with the entire Republican caucus to support the filibuster. The GOP continues to oppose all economic stimulus proposals that involve spending money on jobs, and take even greater exception to Obama’s jobs bills, which pays for that spending with a small surtax on millionaires.

Democrats expected the legislation to fail, but plan to use routine GOP obstruction to strengthen the narrative that the Republican party is unwilling to help improve the economy, or to raise taxes on wealthy people to pay for any of the country’s needs.

To wit, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) issued an official statement after the vote denouncing Republicans for “unanimously block[ing] a bill that would have kept 400,000 teachers in the classroom and first responders on the job because they refuse to ask millionaires to pay their fair share.”

The Republicans are shocked, shocked, I tell you, that the Democrats would use a vote in the Senate to exploit the craven GOP toadyism to their corporate millionaire overlords.

Of course, no one expected the bill to pass either in the Senate or the House, even in its watered-down version. The GOP would rather do the Macarena with Hugo Chavez than anything that would make the president look good, even if it means that unemployment stays high and public schools have to lay off teachers.

But what about the children, you ask? The hell with them; they don’t vote.