Senate Republicans succeeded yesterday
in killing Senator Jim Webb's amendment regarding the enforcement of troop readiness standards. The vote for cloture was 56-41.
Joe Lieberman, who voted for
cloture with the nominations of both Roberts and Alito
, voted against
cloture on this amendment, even going so far as to actively participate in the filibuster itself. This is yet another example of why it's so important to understand our political processes; Lieberman was able to fool voters last year because he could truthfully, but dishonestly, claim to have voted against Roberts and Alito
. As was said many times, he voted for them when it counted and against them when it didn't. Yesterday was the same thing. Lieberman's worthless. The only reason he caucused with the Democrats was to ensure his committee chairmanship. Now that he has it he's dropped any pretense of being a "Democrat."
Voting with the real Democrats were 7 GOP Senators. Pete Domenici
, who made headlines for supposedly distancing himself from Bush on the Iraq War, was not one of them. Most of the GOP Senators who have been criticizing Bush, calling for changes in direction and other rhetorical gambits, voted against this amendment. They voted for Bush, actually, since the amendment was a referendum on whether we should show our soldiers some respect or continue to allow Bush and his minions to exploit and abuse them.
In fact, while Bush's support among the populace is only in the high 20s - and some of that is probably just statistical noise - his support among GOP Senators is 86%. And this is the first time that so many
GOP Senators have actually voted against his agenda.
A majority of Republicans is finally starting to come around to the realization that Bush is a disaster for this nation and that the supporting him is more about blind partisanship than any adherence to conservative principles. But this clear change in attitude is not reflected among Republican politicians. It's time for the rank-and-file of the GOP to remind their Senators just whose interests they are supposed to represent.