What a great moment it was when we realized that the Democrats not only retook the House, but also retook control of the Senate (sort of). And when Speaker Pelosi made Bush look the damn fool by saying, “calm down with the threats, there’s a new Congress in town”, we all went wild like she had just scored the winning touchdown at the end of the Super Bowl. Or, just like she had put Bush in his place, whichever metaphor you like to use.
To a large degree, she was right. There have been oversight hearings into some of the crimes and shady dealings of this administration. There was the “first 100 hours” which resulted in some good legislation passing the House. But in terms of Pelosi’s most excellent statement to Bush back in March, it is unfortunately not the case in terms of “the new Congress” and Bush’s threats.
Being that Congress is now in recess (although it would have been an excellent way to distinguish the Democrats from the republicans if that recess was cut short or eliminated this year, but that is a different story for a different day), now is the time to let our Representatives know just how great of a job the “new Congress” has done when it has come to dealing with Bush’s threats.
Let’s take a trip down (relatively short term) memory lane, shall we?
March 18, 2007, Meet the Press: Senator Schumer gets bold about Gonzales’ lying under oath about the US attorney firings not being for political purposes, saying that there is evidence that Gonzales lied under oath. So, as a result, the most logical thing to do here is to
impeach the nation’s top attorney who is already unpopular and make republican Senators and Congresscritters formally back Gonzales and Bush or take a meaningful stand for the Constitution, um, have a motion to censure Gonzles and cripple him politically a but more, um, sorry, make that fail to even get cloture on a toothless “no confidence vote”, which gave republican Senators like Norm Coleman (MN) Susan Collins (ME), Chuck Hagel (NE), Gordon Smith (OR), Olympia Snowe (ME), Arlen Specter (PA), and John Sununu (NH) a way to distance themselves from Bush and Gonzales without any political risk or consequences whatsoever.
Then we find out through James Comey’s testimony that even John Ashcroft refused to sign off on the wiretapping program, and that many top DOJ officials were close to resigning after a midnight clash at Ashcroft’s hospital room (quite possibly ordered by Dick Cheney), and that there may be the blogosphere’s equivalent of “deep throat” with respect to the spying program. Oh yeah, back in 2006 a majority of Americans were in favor or impeaching Bush if he was involved in illegal wiretapping (note how that was all BEFORE Comey’s testimony). So, it only makes sense that the “new Congress in town” would give Alberto Gonzales, the most incompetent, lying, corrupt, duplicative attorney general EVER more powers with respect to spying, largely in part to the “Blue Dog” sellouts. What makes this even worse is that this bill was sponsored by MINORITY LEADER McConnell. Please tell me how the hell this bill saw the light of day, let alone got the vote that it did? Please tell me when the “old Congress in town” let any major bill sponsored by a Democrat see the light of day?
One more thing to give the “new Congress in town” credit for is Iraq. Despite all of the polls and signs that getting out of Iraq and standing up to Bush’s threats (like Pelosi said to him back in March), a measure that was very quickly and rightfully called the “capitulation bill” gave Bush and his sub 30% approval rating all of his money with no strings attached. Once again, the Blue Dog sellouts and the stunning ability to frame any situation in the worst possible way led prominent Senators to talk about “leaving or troops unfunded on the battlefield” and buying into the absolute hypocrisy and lies levied by the bullying but lying disingenuous hypocritical republicans.
This leads to the “showdown” in September that will ultimately do…..well, who the hell knows now that Petraeus, Cheney and all of the OpEds trumpet the “coming success” of the ill fated and ill planned escalation plan, which frankly has only resulted in zero benchmarks being met, more attacks on troops, even within the Green Zone, more refugees, less electricity and water, and an Iraqi government that has officially gone AWOL after being unofficially AWOL for many many months.
The Democrats have done a lot of good. But we have done a lot for them, to get them elected, to support them and to trust them. When they do right, we certainly let them know. But when they betray their promises and their supporters, it is imperative that they know about that too. These three are the most egregious of examples where there is, frankly, no excuse for the actions taken, as well as many actions NOT taken.
They are elected to represent We the People, and they are on recess now. We the People should put as much pressure on them to start realizing that they have America on their side with respect to the issues and that giving in to the most criminal, most corrupt, most secretive, most vindictive and most divisive administration ever is unacceptable on any level.
And it is not the kind of “new Congress” that America wants to see.