Political Theatre category archive
Dick Polman comments on the Senate’s rule change on the filibuster.
I didn’t believe it was biologically possible for the Senate Democrats to grow a spine, but as we saw when the Boston Red Sox catapulted from worst to first, miracles do happen. And so, as of today, Senate Republicans no longer have the clout to sabotage President Obama’s judicial and executive nominees.
And nowhere in the Constitution – not in a phrase, not in a syllable, not even implicitly – does it empower a Senate minority to block those nominees. In fact, founding fathers James Madison and Alexander Hamilton specifically warned in the Federalist Papers that tyranny of the minority would be a bad thing. They said that requiring a Senate supermajority (anything more than 51 votes) should be limited to the real big stuff, like ratifying a treaty or convicting an impeached president or ousting an elected official for criminal behavior.
As Polman points out elsewhere in the column, the Republicans own obstructionism made this happen.
Leonard Pitts, Jr., visits Gettysburg:
Last month, after exhausting the usual “where are you folks from” patter, the driver of a tour bus in Gettysburg offered this view of the battle that happened there: “Neither side was wrong,” he said. “Both fought for their beliefs.” He seemed not to consider that the Nazis did, too.
It was an attempt at moral equivalence, a pretense that both sides are equally valid, and it is not uncommon. When offered a chance to define what America means, some of us rush from judgment.
As long as the polity continues to behave as if the cause of the Secesh was an honorable cause, the Confederate States of America will continue to win the peace, even as they lost the war, and the Secesh will continue to plague the polity.
The Orlando Sentinal’s Scott Maxwell wanted to know what persons think of their elected representatives incongruously assembled. Not much, it turns out.
On a blustery fall afternoon last week, I visited Lake Eola and chatted with folks — young and old, black and white, liberal and conservative.
Asked to rank Congress on a scale of 1 to 10, the average was 1. One person actually said 3, but he was offset by the two who refused to go higher than zero.
According to Jonathan Cohn (linked at the link, or link squared–ed.), the total number of Americans who have submitted applications for coverage via Healthcare.gov and state exchanges? Try 1.5 million people, if you factor in households with multiple people receiving coverage — dependents and so forth, who, by the way, are included among the 30 million Americans without insurance prior to the ACA. Of that total, 1.4 million applications have been processed by the government. Whittled down further, Cohn reports that 106,000 applicants have chosen a plan and 396,000 have enrolled in Medicaid.
But, because there’s an “Obamacare is a Failed Policy” script that must be serviced, the lowest number of the batch has to be quoted. That’s why you’ve been reading about 106,000 rather than 1.5 million.
Read the rest.