Tuesday, February 6, 2007

The strange universe of Republican "moderates"

Regular readers have seen me express skepticism on a fairly regular basis about the so-called "moderate" Republicans. I'm almost more comfortable believing in the existence of the tooth fairy and the Easter Bunny than I am believing there actually are any "moderate" Republicans.

But this surprised even me. You know all these stories we've been seeing and hearing about those brave, courageous, independent-minded Republicans John Warner and Chuck Hagel? The ones who sponsored a very mild anti-escalation resolution against Bush's adoption of the McCain escalation strategy in Iraq? That resolution that a lot of the Dems were ready to line up behind to get a "bipartisan" anti-escalation vote?

Well, the Republicans decided to use the Senate tradition of the filibuster to prevent any anti-escalation measures from being debated on the Senate floor. So if you wanted any anti-escalation resolution to have a chance of passing, you had to vote for "cloture", i.e., to cut off debate on the measure on the floor so that the anti-escalation measure could be debated.

Warner and Hagel
voted against cloture! In other words, they effectively voted against their own resolution!

Someone tell me again, what evidence is there for the existence of "moderate" Republicans?

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