From Politico, we see this …..
I’m betting most didn’t know there was an amendment up for question. Don’t worry, it’s still not. The only advancement was that the Senate voted to allow for discussion of the proposed amendment.
Several Senate Republicans joined Democrats on Monday to advance a constitutional amendment that would give Congress and the states greater power to regulate campaign finance.
But the bipartisanship ends there.
Many of the Republicans only voted for the bill to foul up Democrats’ pre-election messaging schedule, freezing precious Senate floor time for a measure that ultimately has no chance of securing the two-thirds support necessary in both the House and Senate to amend the Constitution.
The legislation needed 60 votes to advance and Democrats took a cynical view of the 79-18 tally. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said the GOP’s tactic was simply to “stall” because it would eat up limited floor time that Democrats are eyeing for votes aimed at encouraging gender pay equity and raising the minimum wage.
“They know we’re getting out of here fairly shortly and they want to prevent discussion on other very important issues,” said Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). “I would love to be proven wrong. But if the end of this week, we end up getting 67 votes, you can tell me I was too cynical.”
But campaign finance is not a debate that Senate Republicans are shying away from — and their argument is being led by Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), who penned an op-ed for POLITICO on Monday that portrayed Democrats as fixated on “repealing the free speech protections the First Amendment guarantees to all Americans.”
“Not surprisingly, a proposal as bad as the one Senate Democrats are pushing won’t even come close to garnering the votes it would need to pass. But to many Democrats, that’s just the point. They want this proposal to fail because they think that somehow would help them on Election Day,” McConnell wrote.
More from McConnell’s piece,
That’s because the Democrats who control the Senate say they’re more interested in repealing the free speech protections the First Amendment guarantees to all Americans. Their goal is to shut down the voices of their critics at a moment when they fear the loss of their fragile Senate majority. And to achieve it, they’re willing to devote roughly half of the remaining legislative days before November to this quixotic anti-speech gambit.
The proposal they want to consider would empower incumbent politicians to write the rules on who gets to speak and who doesn’t. And while no one likes to be criticized, the way for Senate Democrats to avoid it is to make better arguments, or even better, to come up with better ideas — not shut up their constituents. …..
If all this seems like an object lesson in why most Americans are so disgusted with Washington right now, that’s because it is. With legislative priorities like this, it’s no wonder a recent Quinnipiac poll found that just 14 percent of respondents say they think the government in Washington can be counted on to do what’s right most or all of the time.
A more sensible approach would be for the Democrats who run the Senate to take up the slew of job-creation bills the Republican-controlled House already has passed, some with overwhelming bipartisan support. But Senate Democrats prefer to spend their time on bizarre sideshows like trying to take an eraser to the First Amendment.
None of this should be surprising to even the most casual observer of the Senate these days. Earlier this year, the Democratic leadership rolled out a partisan playbook drafted by campaign staffers that spelled out just how they planned to run the Senate in the run-up to November. It was filled with partisan proposals designed specifically to fail so Democrats could campaign on the failure of that legislation, blaming Republicans for what wasn’t done.
Senate Democrats have followed the script dutifully ever since, and the next two weeks in the Senate promise to be a legislative crescendo of poll-tested electioneering from the Democratic majority.
For months, the Senate has done little more than consider more creative ways to save the jobs of Democratic politicians in November. Yet at a time when millions of Americans are unemployed, middle-class families struggle each month just to pay the bills, the government is failing our veterans and serious crises overseas only seem to grow worse by the day, Democratic leaders shouldn’t be focused on legislative show-votes, including their latest attempt this week to silence the voices of the American people.
There’s more to read at the link, which is worth reading.
So, what happened in the aftermath of the Repubs calling the leftards’ bluff?
Democrats were counting on Republicans to vote against cloture — ie, “filibuster” — the doomed, speech-squelching amendment right from the get-go. The script was pre-written:These Republicans are obstructing votes in order to protect millionaires and billionaires who are poising our politics with filthy outside money! To that end, within minutes of the upper chamber being gaveled back into session after the August recess, Harry Reid resumed his deranged muttering about the sinister Koch brothers. (Always absent in these harangues is any mention of the vast network of moneyed liberal donors, who regularly outspend their conservative counterparts). But before that message machine got revved up, a significant number of GOP members decided to play along. They voted to proceed to a debate, which will eat up many hours of floor time, and will culminate in a failed vote on the amendment, which requires 67 votes to pass. Self-described Socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders is aggrieved by the cynicism of it all: ……..
We’ve already read what poor Bernie had to say. (above)
Look at Sanders! He’s a committed socialist! But, he absolutely knew the Repubs wouldn’t even allow this for debate, which is why he backed the measure.
Sometimes, I think the elected Dims are even dumber than the elected Repubs.
The nature and role of the Senate is to allow for a national discussion, which, is to take years. The nature and role of the House of Representatives is to reflect the will of the people at that time. This is why all of the House must be elected every two years, and why only 1/3 of the Senate gets elected every two years.
But, the Dim senators don’t wish to be deliberative, they wish to play in political gamesmanship. In the final vote, there’s not a Dim in the Senate, nor the House who would vote for the amendment. Outside influence and money is their lifeline.
That said, this should also be instructive to conservatives not attuned to the nuances of the gamesmanship which goes on in the US’ capitol. I’ve seen conservatives outraged at votes like this without knowing the full back story. On paper, it would look like McConnell supported this measure. Clearly, he does not. He only voted for the allowance of a discussion. By all means, let’s discuss this and nail down the particulars of the amendment. Let’s stop outside money from coming into our elections!!! Dims would lose 1/3 of their seats in the House and 1/4 of their seats in the Senate the very next election.