Monday, May 23, 2005
Sell-outs: A few Republican moderates have just sold-out to the Democrats.
Republicans don't know how to lead. They don't know how to govern. Not one more dime -- ever.
*UPDATE* Text of the memorandum of selling-out can be found here. To sum-up: Republicans get nothing except votes on a couple of nominees they would've gotten votes on anyway -- Democrats "compromised" on nothing.
*UPDATE 2* NRO has posted a PDF of the document with the signatories. Just a couple of notes on signatures -- Byrd is getting old, as you can tell from his shaky handwriting. Lincoln Chafee didn't "sign" the document -- he printed his name. There are two signatories that must've had medical training, because I can't make out their names for the life of me.
GOP signers appear to consist of:
Mike DeWine, Ohio
Lincoln Chafee, R.I.
Lindsay Graham, S.C.
John Warner, Va.
John McCain, Ariz.
Olympia Snowe, Maine
Susan Collins, Maine
*UPDATE 3* Sen. Lindsay Graham said the following on CNN's "Paula Zahn Now" -- this is verbatim from the personal video recorder:
Can I add one thing, Paula, about the future? I don't know what the future holds, but I do know this: no matter how much pressure I get in South Carolina, no matter how much pressure I get from conservative groups, I'm not gonna vote for the nuclear option because I'm worried about me. If there are future filibusters where one of the seven Democratic colleagues believes they have to filibuster, at that point in time I retain my right as an individual senator to vote to change the rules if I believe they're out of bounds. We have to trust each other. We have to work together. But we have a chance to start over. And my vote is depending on what my seven colleagues decide to do in the future. If they decide to go down the filibuster road, I retain my options to change the rules. But I don't think we're going to get there. There's no reason for us to have to do that if we'll act like the senators the public expects us to be.
This sure seems to fly in the face of this portion of the MOU:
B. Rules Changes. In light of the spirit and continuing commitments made in this agreement, we commit to oppose the rules changes in the 109th Congress, which we understand to be any amendment to or interpretation of the Rules of the Senate that would force a vote on a judicial nomination by means other than unanimous consent or Rule XXII.
The entire situation is very muddy right now and we'll have to wait to hear from all of the GOP's "Gang of Seven" to see what exactly they each think this deal means. Graham appears to believe that the nuclear option is still on the table if the Democrats continue down the filibuster route. The text of the deal doesn't appear to support that interpretation. One worry is that Graham (and possibly others) didn't read what they were signing closely or were given verbal assurances about what certain portions of the deal really meant. When Graham (and possibly others) respond to future Democrat filibusters by attempting to invoke the nuclear option, the Democrats will use this MOU to beat them over the heads as dishonest traitors.