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Lots of tough talk from Dems on Sen. Jim Bunning's (R-KY) filibuster against the extension of unemployment insurance and COBRA benefits, but no real fight.

Last night, Roll Call (subscription only) was reporting that Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL) was ready for a knock-down, drag-out with Bunning over this much-needed extension:

Retiring Sen. Jim Bunning (R-Ky.) late Thursday launched a one-man crusade to block an extension of unemployment and COBRA insurance benefits, vowing to allow the benefit programs to expire Sunday unless Democrats agreed to pay for them with unused stimulus funds.

Bunning’s quixotic pursuit of deficit offsets at the potential expense of payments to unemployed or uninsured citizens enraged Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and other Democrats, who vowed to keep the chamber in session until Bunning relents or collapses.

A senior Democratic leadership aide said Durbin would ask for unanimous consent to pass the extensions without Bunning’s payment scheme every half hour for the foreseeable future. "We’re going to keep doing it until we break him," the aide said.

And this morning, Roll Call tells us Bunning was on the verge of losing what's left of his mind, which is exactly what forcing a one-man filibuster is all about:

Bunning’s filibuster angered Democrats, most notably Durbin, who organized a group of the chamber’s younger Democrats Thursday night to man the floor for a potential all-night session.

But after three hours of often heated debate — during which Bunning could be heard yelling obscenities at other lawmakers — Durbin dropped his efforts for the evening shortly before midnight.

So they had him to the point where he was shouting obscentities on the Senate floor and decided... to let him go home for a good night's sleep.

Awesome!

He probably slept a hell of a lot better than the Kentuckians who are out of work and depending on those benefits, I can tell you that. No word on whether Senate Democrats actually tucked him in.

This morning, the fight resumed, presumably after a nourishing breakfast which some of those Kentucky families would probably have liked to have had themselves. The unanimous consent request to pass the extension was made, Bunning objected, gave a short speech, and then suggested the absence of a quorum, which you may recall is often used as a stalling tactic to avoid conducting an actual filibuster.

While it's true that the presiding officer of the Senate has no choice but to direct the clerk to call the roll when a Senator suggests the absence of a quorum, it is also true that a quorum call can be suspended by unanimous consent if a Senator asks for it and there's no objection. In other words, any Senator could have immediately asked for the quorum call to be dispensed with, and if Bunning (or a supporter) wasn't there to object, then it'd be ended, after which another unanimous consent request to pass the UI/COBRA bill could be made.

Instead, we are more than one hour into this pointless quorum call, during which one of two things could be happening. One, Democrats could be in negotiations with the guy they said they were going to "break." Or two, Democrats are needlessly giving the guy they said they were going to "break" a chance to kick back and relax, filibustering the bill while he naps.

Dems promised last night that they'd be renewing their unanimous consent request to pass the bill every half hour until Bunning either caved or collapsed. To me, that's a bit too generous, and I'd prefer seeing them all armed with the script for the request and prepared to make it as often as possible, such that there's not so much as a piss break allowed for Bunning today. Sure, he could get other Republicans to object on his behalf, but I'm not really all that sure anyone wants to. At least not on the substance. But either way, Dems have already skipped two "scheduled" unanimous consent requests during this quorum call, with no indication of when they'll be prepared to get back to their promise next.

A one man filibuster is the kind a concerted effort to "make them filibuster" is most likely to break. But instead, no one's even trying anymore. On C-SPAN2, they're saying the Senators are in negotiations to end the stand-off. But a one man stand-off ought to be broken on principle alone.

Doesn't look like it's happening, though. Surprise, surprise.

UPDATE: Nevermind! The Senate appears to have adjourned for the weekend. Bunning has won for the day, and Durbin's threat has shockingly failed to materialize at all. The extent of Bunning's punishment: he missed prime time TeeVee last night.

Enjoy your weekend. Maybe the DSCC will call you for money this evening!

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 08:50 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Bunning was a dirty beanball pitcher (15+ / 0-)

    He hasn't changed. Why Kentucky? Why?

    Take the fight to them. Don't let them bring it to you. - Harry S Truman

    by jgoodfri on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 08:52:59 AM PST

  •  Flood His Phones (18+ / 0-)

    Let Bunning know he is being despicable:

    http://bunning.senate.gov/...

    Washington, D.C.
    316 Hart Senate Office Building
    Washington, DC 20510
    Main: 202.224.4343
    Fax: 202.228.1373

    District 4 - Ft. Wright (Main State Office)
    1717 Dixie Highway
    Suite 220
    Ft. Wright, KY 41011
    Main: 859-341-2602
    Fax: 859.331.7445
    Toll free: 1-800-283-8983

  •  Durbin's Contact info (10+ / 0-)

    Phone numbers below.  YKWTD

    WASHINGTON, D.C.
    309 Hart Senate Bldg.
    Washington, DC 20510
    9 am to 6 pm
    (202) 224-2152 - ph
    (202) 228-0400 - fx
    CHICAGO
    230 S Dearborn St.
    Suite 3892
    Chicago, IL 60604
    8:30 am to 5 pm
    (312) 353-4952 - ph
    (312) 353-0150 - fx
    SPRINGFIELD
    525 South 8th St.
    Springfield, IL 62703
    8:30 am to 5 pm
    (217) 492-4062 - ph
    (217) 492-4382 - fx
    CARBONDALE
    250 W. Cherry Street
    Suite 115-D
    Carbondale, IL 62901
    8:30 am to 5 pm
    (618) 351-1122 - ph
    (618) 351-1124 - fx

  •  The Democrats are just simply pathetic. (33+ / 0-)

    Is it any wonder they are perceived as weak.  It's because they are.

    The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

    by accumbens on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 08:54:14 AM PST

  •  is this going to be a REAL FILIBUSTER? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    buckhorn okie

    we are snowed in and its still snowing so we would love a good old fashioned knock down drag out filibuster to watch...  do I go put on the popcorn?

    "the election's over. deal with it" The President

    by KnotIookin on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 08:54:35 AM PST

  •  Any citizen activism to be done? (4+ / 0-)

    If so, please give quickie talking points and contact info.

    Thanks.

    Media Reform Action Link http://stopbigmedia.com/

    by LNK on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 08:54:41 AM PST

  •  Democrats (7+ / 0-)

    folding like cheap lawn chairs?

    Who'd a thunk?

    Riding on a pony Riding against the wind And in came brando And he told it like this

    by Wamsutta on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 08:54:53 AM PST

  •  Oh good grief (5+ / 0-)

    I have a football here any Dem senator want to kick it

    Oh no, the dead have risen and they're voting Republican. - Lisa Simpson

    by LaFeminista on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 08:55:43 AM PST

  •  What's worse, the Democrats won't (13+ / 0-)

    use this against the Republicans to show what awful people they are.

    The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt. Bertrand Russell

    by accumbens on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 08:55:52 AM PST

  •  Democratic "leadership" are spineless wimps n/t (4+ / 0-)

    "If it's made of plants, eat it. If it's made in a plant, don't."

    by b00g13p0p on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 08:56:32 AM PST

  •  I called Durbin's office; Bunning's lines (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    buckhorn okie, melpomene1, dmw97

    are busy.

    Media Reform Action Link http://stopbigmedia.com/

    by LNK on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 08:57:42 AM PST

  •  bunning's dc phone off the hook (11+ / 0-)

    i called earlier, asked about the "tough shit" comment, and the staffer hung up on me. when I called back, I got a busy signal.

    it's been an hour and the phone is still busy.
    Mr. Bunning, it seems, can dish it out  but his staff can't take it.

  •  If Your Senator is Democratic (4+ / 0-)

    contact him/her and have them get involved in defeating Bunning

    http://www.usa.gov/...

  •  Is the 'unanimous consent' (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    buckhorn okie

    thing a rule of the Senate?

    Just out of theoretical interest, would there be any problem changing the requirement to

    '2 Senators must object to a (no longer) unanimous consent decree' to allow business to proceed?

  •  Why are people upset with this? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hesiod, kefauver, fou, Alanhawaii

    I want Bunning to be up there all day today fighting unemployement benefits when unemployment's at 9% Let him do it. November's rolling hard down the track. He's not running, but the big R next to his name is.

  •  Assholes will be assholes (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gecko, Silverbird, Eric Nelson

    The only other option would be kicking the shit out of him, which he deserves.

    But half the Senate is Bunning-like, and half the country.  A principled fight just kicks up a lot of dust for a few hours or days and everyone goes back to their assumed roles.  The assholes will be up to something else tomorrow, while they're being cheered on by the assholes.

    Having two rabidly conservative brothers-- and racist, mean-spirited wingnuts far and wide on both sides of my family-- has taught me that violence is the only thing these people respond to, and I won't stoop to that.

    So, short of Durbin smacking Bunning upside the head, I see no useful alternative for the Democrats, and no reason to blame them for the GOP's typical assholery.

    •  I understand where you're coming from (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      samantha in oregon

      ...no reason to blame them for the GOP's typical assholery.

      But when you can't put food in your kids' mouths or a roof over their head because your unemployment benefits run out, you're going to blame who's in charge. I'm not saying it's right! I'm just saying it's typical for those suffering to blame those who are not leading.

  •  The Unemployment Nazi: "No benefits for you!" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    opinionated
  •  Morons (10+ / 0-)

    They just threw a huge political and policy win in the garbage because they wanted to go home.

    Ok, so I read the polls.

    by andgarden on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:02:15 AM PST

  •  Why do we even have a Democratic Party? (6+ / 0-)

    If they allow one guy to get away with this, they can't stand up to one guy, why do we even have a political party?  Is it any wonder that my desire to open my wallet for these guys is waning by the second?

    No one I know is as cowardly as a Democratic politician.  I have dated women who are in the military.  My friends number veterans of Vietnam and the first Gulf War.  I once got into a fistfight in a bar because a guy wanted my friends and I to leave.  The ordinary Americans I've known and loved have hearts filled with courage and bravery, both in combat and in facing everyday challenges.  So who are these guys?  Who the hell is as lazy and cowardly as these guys?  No one I know.

    Don't make excuses for them.

    "It was like that when I got here." - Homer Simpson

    by rbird on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:02:47 AM PST

    •  Jesus fecking christ. (4+ / 0-)

      What fucking especially whiny lunatics here today. "Get away with it"? He did it. They can't shoot him in the face, for fuck's sake. They argued with him and tried to talk sense into him - good for them - and now he looks like a fucking idiot.

      Everybody needs a fucking ambien and a few martinis.

      •  That would have been great, though. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Little

        Durbin unloads a shotgun into his brainpan. Or a hatchet. A long-handled axe--and Durbin leaps onto the desk and chases Bunning around the chamber until he hacks him up howling like a maniac. Or a chainsaw. Two chainsaws! Wait--Two chainsaws and a team of pitbulls. Yeah.

        Yeah. That would be awesome. Hahahahahahahahaha.

        Ha.

        What?

        If you've lamented the slipping morality of America while snorting cocaine off a male hooker's back during the filming "Jesus Camp", you might be a Republican.

        by The Gryffin on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:18:12 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Sorry, but 'fighting for us' and going home are (5+ / 0-)

        not the same thing. If they REALLY wanted to, the dems could call on media and make humiliating statement about Bunning's action publicly so that it's shown on most of the 6 o'clock news around the country. I'd bet he'd back down then.

      •  Try peddling that BS (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        PhilK, Alanhawaii, kwt3200

        to the people about to get seriously screwed because their unemployment benefits ran out.

        Bullies NEVER give in to cowardice, a lesson the Democratic Senators seem not to have learned.

        But hey, maybe your "Democrats, just appease rat bastards like Bunning and everything will be fine" strategy will pay off with even more Senate & House seats come November.

        Sure it will, on Bizarroworld.

        When it comes to Texas Politics, "Stupid" Plays Very Well

        by KingCranky on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 11:03:39 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Another apologist for cowardice heard from (0+ / 0-)

        Or maybe it's just laziness.  This is why they get away with it time after time.  Gotta cover their little asses every time, huh?  What are you a congressional staffer dependent for your job on sucking up to these guys?

        "It was like that when I got here." - Homer Simpson

        by rbird on Sat Feb 27, 2010 at 09:33:24 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  You could not possibly be (0+ / 0-)

          stupider.

          •  Wonderful (0+ / 0-)

            FDR took heads, not literally, but he knew how to push people around.  Do you think LBJ got the central reforms of the Great Society through by being a nice guy?  Even the non-violent civil rights movement pushed people around, once again, not literally, but with words and political action.  You can't get things done facing intransigent obstructionists by being a "nice guy."  You gotta get tough.

            Your silly response makes me conclude that I am right:  you are a congressional staffer making excuses for his cowardly bosses.  Or they could just be exceptional lazy.  Hard to tell.

            "It was like that when I got here." - Homer Simpson

            by rbird on Sat Feb 27, 2010 at 08:46:06 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I will take one step back (0+ / 0-)

              They may not be cowardly, just uncommitted to the causes they espouse.  Say anything to get elected, then just get along once you're in, not cause any waves, and raise money for your next campaign.

              If you are a congressional staffer, I hope you're well-paid, cuz money's the only thing you'll be taking away from the job.  Anything for a buck, I guess.

              "It was like that when I got here." - Homer Simpson

              by rbird on Sat Feb 27, 2010 at 08:54:38 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  You got me. I'm a congrssional staffer. (0+ / 0-)

              I have to do this job via telepathy from my rural home between the Siskyous and Cascades, but hey - it's a living.

              Sillly?

              •  Just read a bio of FDR, (0+ / 0-)

                so I kinda overreact when our contemporary Democratic politicians show such weakness.  Why can't we have an FDR?  This has been accentuated by the LBJ tapes.  You can actually hear him applying strong-arm tactics to southern politicians who were opposing his reforms.  The Right understands hardball politics.  We used to understand it.

                Ever see the SNL skit where Obama turns into the Hulk?  That's what I'm waiting for.

                There's a great line from the movie "Chariots of Fire":  "What we need are muscular Christians!"  We need a few muscular Democrats.

                The congressional staffer bit?  It's a convenient fiction in aid of my vitriol.  Though given the frequency with which Democratic politicians and their staffers suck up to progressives when they need money, there might be a little truth to it.  The state of things as they are now, there are only two or three Democratic senators I'd ever give money to again.  And none of them are in the leadership.  

                "It was like that when I got here." - Homer Simpson

                by rbird on Sun Feb 28, 2010 at 05:46:11 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

  •  Call Bunning's ofc. and say you're Mickey Mantle (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dump Terry McAuliffe, Janie, fou

    Senile Old Coot will probably believe you.

  •  Principle Alone? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RichM

    We are talking about the Democrats here, aen't we?

    Money=speech; every dollar has a right to be heard. The Supremes

    by orson on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:04:00 AM PST

  •  They wouldn't want to make their good freind (8+ / 0-)

    suffer and have to spend the night away from his warm comfy bed.

    All of the true things I am about to tell you are shameless lies.- Bokonon

    by ryan81 on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:04:43 AM PST

  •  If Democrats are letting Bunning do this (13+ / 0-)

    with this little fight, then they are really fully on board with what he is doing, and their rhetoric against it is just so much posturing and hot air.

    On this, as on virtually everything else, I firmly believe the Democrats' opposition to the Republicans is just for show.

    This is what the Democratic Party does; it's who they are: http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/02/23/democrats/index.html

    by simca on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:05:08 AM PST

  •  Well, he did miss the big game. (0+ / 0-)

    I mean, this was the game that could keep his team from making it to the NEXT big game.

    I'm sure he feels awfully bad for missing it.  I can't imagine anything that would make me feel worse.

  •  The US Senate is a useless institution. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    plembo, Hunter Huxley
  •  senile old republican senator not running for (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Johnny Q

    reelection whoops up on US Senators.

    WTF?

    Republicans===the party of the 1% rich people in America. Or in other words..The Party of NO!

    by jalapeno on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:05:39 AM PST

  •  Democrats,stand up. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Janie, goheelsgodems

    Yesterday,during the HC summit,Obama & others clearly began taking back the rightfully democratic populist mantle with his pointed comments about real people (with "normal" wages & jobs) and real HC availability. It reminded folks that there is a very real difference between the two political sides.

    This vote is another opportunity to remind all Americans which party is on their side. C'mon,elected reps.,USE IT.

    "George RR Martin is not your bitch" ~~ Neil Gaiman

    by tardis10 on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:05:44 AM PST

  •  Good Lord. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    RichM, Hunter Huxley, Johnny Q

    Our country has gone insane.

  •  And they expect me... (5+ / 0-)

    To work for them over the summer and into the fall to get them re-elected?  Donating money that I don't have?  FUCK THAT.  

    To the WH: "It's your job to f*ck-up power; it's Fox's job to f*ck-up truth.' - Jon Stewart

    by RichM on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:05:58 AM PST

  •  Cut the democrats some slack on this (9+ / 0-)

    after all they only have a 59 to 1 edge over Bunning.

    With Obama's Presidency, I feel the enduring pain of every teabagger, and believe me, I completely enjoy it.

    by pollbuster on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:05:58 AM PST

  •  The next time the DSCC asks you for anything (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dump Terry McAuliffe, Losty, Johnny Q

    give them a one word answer---Bunning.

    With Obama's Presidency, I feel the enduring pain of every teabagger, and believe me, I completely enjoy it.

    by pollbuster on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:07:43 AM PST

  •  This is to be expected.... (11+ / 0-)

    Everyone may have been on a high yesterday watching the Health Care Summit, but that was just an easy performance for the Democrats.  The Dems always talk and act tough when it doesn't really count.  But last night, when it counted, they failed - as usual.

    It is no longer plausible to believe that the Dems act this way because they are just inept or spineless.  There is something more to this and it begs the question - Do the Democrats really want to help the American people, or do they just want to pretend they are helping?

    And in the end the love you take is equal to the love you make. Lennon/McCartney

    by landrew on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:08:23 AM PST

  •  hypocrisy has a name (0+ / 0-)

    The should be the equivalent of the Anthem rate raise.  GOP withholding help at the wrong time and punishing the wrong people.  A GOP tin ear to the American populace at a time of crisis and national pain.

    NOTE: This communication may be audited by the United States Government without your knowledge or permission. If you don't like it, vote.

    by jalbert on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:09:01 AM PST

    •  The GOP supporters have gotten to the point in (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tommyfocus2003, KingCranky

      obstructing that no matter how much it benefits them personally, they won't support anything this Congress wants to pay for. Can you imagine someone touting this line during the Great Depression? Seriously? it's all about opposing ANYTHING the democratically controlled (and i use that term loosely) wants to execute. It has no principle or fact behind it at all. I have a hard time wrapping my head around that people actually WANT this...truly warped! And if, IF they don't, where is the outrage at such an assinine statement as this during 10% unemployment? Do they want people to suffer so they can try to make the current government, dems, etc. look bad? That is so morally warped, it's just beyond me!

  •  Direct election of Senators=Huge Mistake (0+ / 0-)

    The founding fathers got it right. We should never have second guessed them. Making state legislatures pick the state's two Senators makes far more sense in this day and age than direct elections.

    Especially with the arcane, outdated, and antiquated dipshit Senate parliamentary rules we have in place.

  •  no risk to Bunning (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kefauver, TheUnknown285, KingCranky

    He's in his last year in office, not running again, so he can say and do anything he or the repug leadership wants without repercussions.

    Maybe if they could find a way to boot him out of the baseball hall of fame...

  •  i somehow dont think they will cave (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kefauver

    i have a hard time beliving that the will let people run out of money for the simple fact that there will be massive unrest.

    Laughter is a force for democracy - John Cleese

    by GlowNZ on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:14:34 AM PST

  •  Fight the fight you threaten (8+ / 0-)

    Dear Senator Durbin - I signed your petition to change the filibuster rules. Now I read that Senate Democrats aren't even able to stop one Republican Senator, Bunning. I read that you intended to force Sen. Bunning to stay up all night - but you stopped the fight that was promised.

    Fight the fight you threaten - the first rule of combat.

    Dems need new leadership. Do the Senators in leadership position know what the grassroots Dems think of their leadership, how they are held in contempt? Do they know why their poll numbers among Democrats have dropped? Does Harry Reid know why Nevada Democrats turned against him? It's failure to lead. It's saying you will do one thing, then not doing it.

    Email Dick Durbin at the address he sent to me
    info@dickdurbin.com

    The Senate would be functional if it would adopt majority rule.

    by mrobinson on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:15:15 AM PST

  •  The benefits expire Sunday? right? what's worng (7+ / 0-)

    with letting the world see what a pathetic loser this so-called Senator really is?  it's not a story the MSM would care about if he caves, it IS a story they can grab on to for at least the Friday evening news (I can hear Ed Schultz braying now!!!), I don't understand why people are against this kind of gift of republican insanity being extended as long as possible?

    I just receieved an emmail from Durbin to sign a petition to abolish the filibister. He is using this epsisode as ammunition.

    I obviously view things very differently from the 'Drown the Witch' mob. Show him up for the pathetic snivelling worm he really is and utilise the episode as further fuel to get rid of the filibuster altogether.

    •  Hee's the Louisville Courier-Journal (5+ / 0-)

      http://www.courier-journal.com/...

      Bunning blocks extended jobless aid

      WASHINGTON — Sen. Jim Bunning touched off an acrimonious late-night debate Thursday on the Senate floor as he single-handedly managed to block legislation extending unemployment benefits for about 1 million Americans.

      Let him make that news. (And I wish they'd stay over the weekend and pass it.)

      •  Maybe his constituents will punish him. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Zinman, Janie

        How, I'm not sure. Since he's retiring and all.

        But at least a newspaper said it was his fault. Maybe out of work Kentuckians can wad one up and eat it for Sunday dinner.

      •  And there you have it. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Little

        I was trying to figure out why they would let this happen.  Like everyone here I was and still am pretty upset about this whole thing.  Not that long ago I was one of the unemployed, worrying about my benefits running out.  The sad reality is that the Republicans are playing games with the lives of these people, there's no level that they won't stoop to.  While Senator Durbin and a handful of others could have stepped up and stood ground last night.  The headlines today would say nothing of it, it would be another blip on the radar.  Even if they had won, Bunning would have fallen into the pile of obstructionist attempts.

        Now, however, Bunning and the Republicans are the enemies, for the whole weekend.  They have blocked, and obstructed something for petty reasons.  The Democrats, as a Senate will "safe" it in the middle of the week.  Millions of people will be effected, and at a loss.  We hate it, those people hate it, but this is a strategy, a cold and calculated strategy.  It's the reason that people are sick of politics, but in the face of a biased media, a short attention span constituency, and an opponent that plays with no holds barred rules, what other choice do you have aside from playing the game?

        Win the game, destroy the enemy, then change the system.  We can't just hope to change the system without playing the game, I think this last year has shown us that sad reality.

  •  whats wrong with using the stimulus funds (0+ / 0-)
    for the unemployment Benefits extension. It more of a stimulus than throwing it in some big black hole.
  •  Nuclear. Option. (5+ / 0-)

    The American people will not care - and certainly the unemployed will not care - if the Democrats take an opportunity like this to blow up the filibuster.

  •  Look, folks here need to back off Jimbo. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kefauver

    Didnt you read that he missed the televised Ky basketball game last night because his patriotism and conscience required him to remain ever vigilant in staving off the forces of socialsit-marxist-naziist-communist-fascist-merka haters in the Senate. Gawd bless you, Jimbo.

    F*ck you...I won't do what you tell me. Rage Against The Machine

    by A Runner on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:19:09 AM PST

  •  KY-SEN: a top tier opportunity (6+ / 0-)

    Democratic candidates for bunning's Senate seat should unite in an ad campaign puttin Bunning's histrionics as firmly in the spotlight as possible, and demanding answers from his would-be successors as to whether Bunning speaks for their values.

    We can't stop Bunning from being a grade-A shit all over his constituents. They elected him statewide, twice, after all.

    But we and the Democratic Party can shine the light of truth on him and say loudly and clearly, this is who I'm NOT...and challenge Republicans to do the same.

    If they differ from Bunning, they alienate their own crackpot fishbowl base. If they don't, they alienate EVERYBODY else in Kentucky.

    Either way, we win.

    Contrary to popular belief, most of the good people of Kentucky have fully functional brains and know how the bottom line affects their own wallets. Bunning and his toads will learn that to their sorrow in November.

    "Don't worry! Our Health Care Bill is going to a big farm, where it will have plenty of room to run around!" --attributed to Barack Obama

    by AdmiralNaismith on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:20:55 AM PST

    •  TPM already has the kill-quote: (8+ / 0-)

      Day in the Life

      Sen. Bunning (R-KY) uses filibuster rules to block unemployment benefits for over a million, complains he had to miss a basketball game to do it.

      --Josh Marshall

       TPM

       I hope that makes it into a few adds.

      Speak the truth; Then leave, quickly. -old Russian proverb

      by Kordo on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:26:20 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  BUNNING IS RETIRING (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Janie

      That is why he doesn't give a shit.  From Wikipedia: As of the end of September 2008, Bunning had $175,000 in his campaign account. By comparison, all other Republican senators facing competitive 2010 races had at least $850,000 at that point.[22] In the last quarter of 2008, Citizens for Bunning, as the senator's campaign committee is known, raised $27,000 from 26 separate contributions, ending the year with $150,000 in cash.[25] In mid-April, KYWORDSMITH.com reported that of the $263,000 that Bunning collected during the first quarter of 2009, over 77% ($203,383) was received from out of state, while over 10% ($28,100) was actually untouchable for another 13 months as it was contributed exclusively for use in a general election.[26] Bunning had two fund raisers scheduled in the first half of April.[27]

      In an April 2009 poll, Bunning’s approval rating was just 28%, and he trailed the four most likely Democratic candidates in hypothetical contests. 54% of voters in the state disapproved of Bunning’s performance.[28] Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson announced on April 30, 2009, that he would form an exploratory committee to run for Bunning’s seat. It was speculated that this was a precursor to Bunning's retirement. "He (Bunning) told Trey to do this," one senior congressional official said of Bunning. "Why else would he tell his main rival to prepare for a run?" [29] However, Bunning said at a Lincoln Day dinner in Kentucky on 9 May that he still planned to run: "The battle is going to be long, but I am prepared to fight for my values."[30]

      In a press conference on May 19, Bunning called Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell a "control freak": "If Mitch McConnell doesn’t endorse me, it could be the best thing that ever happened to me in Kentucky."[31]

      On July 27, 2009, Bunning announced he would not run for re-election in 2010, blaming fellow Republicans for doing "everything in their power to dry up my fundraising."[32]

  •  The Rethugs always find ways (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ornerydad, kefauver

    to become bigger shitheads each day. And the American people keep electing them. You get what you vote for.

  •  Oh, the Contrived Outrage! (0+ / 0-)

    The Only Way to Save the Democratic Party is to Allow Republicans to Win - Some Moron at DKOS

    by kefauver on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:23:25 AM PST

  •  The Dems are (5+ / 0-)

    cowards they should have stayed in session all night and all weekend and forced Bunning to stay awake. This is why no one respects the Dems anymore.

  •  I sometimes wish I were a republican (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingCranky, jpmassar, tardis10

    Why do I wish such a thing?  Because it's clear that even though republicans don't have a clue about governing, mostly because they don't give a crap about the people they govern, they do know about power. They know how to use it to crush opposition when they're in power and how to marshal what little they have to oppose the majority when they're out of power.  Democrats usually have good ideas about governing, precisely because they give a crap about the people they govern, but they are either clueless or gutless about using power.  Where o where in the democratic party is the godforsaken soul of LBJ?  We need some people in power that are willing to crush the testicles of their enemies and tighten the sphincters of their putative friends.  I don't like Bob McDowell, but he just suspended hard-won rights of gays in Virginia. it was a despicable act, but he did it. Why? Because he could.  Christie in NJ is slicing/dicing budgets with reckless abandon precisely because he wants to protect the rich folks he comes from and doesn't care about the working stiffs he should care for, but also because he can.  Geez, doesn't anybody we elect get it?  Rahm was supposed to be tough. I don't see it.  I'd love to see a Where's Waldo type cartoon depicting a search for Obama's spine.  Harry Reid? What a waste of oxygen.  Pelosi? She's herding cats, but at least sounds as though she is willing to mix it up.  Arrrgh!

    Zirc  

  •  Take away his pay and benefits.... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kefauver

    and healthcare.

    And pass the UI extension.

    •  Or hand him over to (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingCranky

      the unemployed people of Kentucky...

      Honestly, it's hard to decide what is more despicable: duplicitous Democrats or their cravenly corrupt brethren in the Republican party.

      They can ask for all the tax cuts they want for the richest people in the country, who hardly need more by the way, yet they will deny others the only means of keeping food on their table.

      Anyone who aids or abets this sort of activity is as culpable as "Senator" Bunning.

      They better have emergency appropriations ready we may have a high unemployment level until 2014.

      Language is wine upon the lips. -Virginia Woolf

      by valadon on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:32:57 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  WHY DID THEY LET HIM GO HOME LAST NIGHT ??? (4+ / 0-)

    What is wrong with the Dems ?  Why are they such lilly-livered pussies ?  The choices enrage me.  I can choose the Republicans who only care about the rich or I can choose the Democrats who are f-ing stupid.  Jesus.

  •  this isin't going anywhere today (8+ / 0-)

    it won't come back to the floor until Tuesday. The lady at Durbin's office says that the next vote is scheduled for Tuesday. At least I didn't get into a fight with her but we had a civil disagreement with how long the senator should have stayed on the floor last night. She thought he was on the floor long enough. I thought he should have stayed on the floor all night if that's what it took. I let her know that it makes it hard for me to vote for Sanator Durbin when he gives this guy a pass and let's people I know lose out on benefits they desperatly need.

  •  And this is the leadership (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dump Terry McAuliffe, KingCranky

    we're supposed to defer to as they know so much more about how politics works than us DFHs.

    Fuck Me To Tears, as a good friend of mine is wont to say in situations like this.

    Before you win, you have to fight. Come fight along with us at TexasKaos.

    by boadicea on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:27:37 AM PST

  •  They adjourned?!?!?! (0+ / 0-)

    Seriously?  There's unfinished business!!!!!  And we wonder why people become teabaggers...

    I am hungry for some unrest, I want to push this beyond a peaceful protest, I wanna speak in a language that they'll understand

    by AnakinSkywalker on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:29:48 AM PST

  •  Dissappointed! The dems need to follow thru on... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingCranky

    ... their threats or the republicans will never take them seriously. They need to show some spine to break this bullshit. It's now or never.

    ~we study the old to understand the new~from one thing know ten thousand~to see things truly one must see what is in the light and what lies hidden in shadow~

    by ArthurPoet on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:30:31 AM PST

    •  You know, the more I think about this ... (0+ / 0-)

      ... the more I think this just might have been a brilliant strategic move on the dems part --- give this Republican asshole rope to hang himself, and then crucify him in the media for his obstructionist agenda.

      ~we study the old to understand the new~from one thing know ten thousand~to see things truly one must see what is in the light and what lies hidden in shadow~

      by ArthurPoet on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 11:45:50 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  We have to have 'comity' (4+ / 0-)

    "They're our friends! We don't want to upset them!"

    The United States Senate has lost its political legitmacy and should be abolished.

    by TKLTKL94 on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:30:54 AM PST

  •  They fail at politics 101 (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Dump Terry McAuliffe, tardis10

    they could have used this filibuster as a teaching moment. sometimes it seems like the democrats and the republicans are playing a game of good-cop-bad-cop on the rest of us.

  •  WEAK? WHY? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kefauver, Kordo, KingofSpades, kwt3200

    Why do you perceive the democrats as weak?

    Check out your facts, we are about to get health care after showing the entire country that the republicans can not be trusted to look out for the welfare of the American people over the welfare of
    corporations.

    And this case?  Let them go ahead and stop un-emploryment benefits for millionas of Americans,

    WHAT DO YOU THINK THAT WILL DO FOR REPUBLICANS

    IN THE COMING ELECTIONS???

    THE DEMOCRATS WILL GETS THESE BENFITS BACK AFTER THEY SHOW THE REPUBLI'CON's FOR WHAT THEY ARE

    THEY ARE FASCISTS.

    •  Gee should i worry about this or (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingCranky, schnecke21

      WHAT DO YOU THINK THAT WILL DO FOR REPUBLICANS

      IN THE COMING ELECTIONS???

      whether or not someone can clothe, feed, house themselves? Hmmmm. tough one there! Let's see make people suffer so the repubs get creamed in the election...yeah that works!...NOT!

    •  Some folks are in permanent (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kefauver

      "brace for impact!" mode. We've lost so much of the message fight, it's almost hard to believe we're winning it for now. I have my fingers crossed. Land this baby, and tPOTUS will have political capital the likes of which even God has never seen.

      Speak the truth; Then leave, quickly. -old Russian proverb

      by Kordo on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:40:34 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  People won't know it was a Repub who did it (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingCranky, oxfdblue, schnecke21, kwt3200

      That's why this was important. If benefits are stopped, it will be another example of the "incompetent, dysfunctional Democratic Congress."

      This was a golden opportunity to show America 1)how the filibuster is being abused, and 2)that the Republican party doesn't give a shit about the unemployed. An easy-to-understand, easy-for-the-media-to-report instance of what's wrong with our government, with heroes and a villain. But they screwed it up yet again.

  •  I am so f-cking disgusted by Dems (4+ / 0-)

    Bunning is a malignant presence in the Senate. Here was a chance to show the country, very clearly and succinctly, what the GOP has been about for the past year. But once again, they cave.

    Do they not remember 1995, when Clinton called their bluff and shut down the government? Exposing the ugly face of Gingrichism saved his presidency...today, Dems are given opportunity after opportunity to do the same, yet our "leaders" wet themselves at the thought of inconveniencing a senile old man who is inflicting real harm on our country.

  •  How nice (4+ / 0-)

    And Monday, hundreds of thousands of people get hit in the head by a Bunning fastball.

    It may be time to risk making Republicans angry.

    In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice; but in practice, there always is a difference. - Yogi Berra

    by blue aardvark on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:32:43 AM PST

  •  Durbin is a weakling (3+ / 0-)

    I remember he apologized over some stupid thing about which the GOP had done their faux outrage thing.

    Bunning probably threatened to kick his a$$ after school.

    Whatever...

    I am so OVER the so-called Democratic "leadership" in the Senate.

    Conservative thinking in a nutshell: "There is a hole in the boat and it's sinking! Don't let that guy fix the hole because he's gay!"

    by Joshua Lyman on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:32:52 AM PST

    •  Pussies! (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Joshua Lyman, TKLTKL94

      No offense to pussies, but Durbin is a wuss as we say.

      "It's better to die on your feet then live on your knees" E. Zapata

      by Blutodog on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:37:26 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  And what about Reid? (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        mcurry, TKLTKL94

        Did you hear him yesterday in the summit? He seemed to have this great prepared set of remarks with his "not entitled to our own facts Lamar" zinger. But it was like he couldn't talk!

        He just seemed so... inept. Yeah! There's our Democratic Senate Majority Leader. He has trouble sitting down and reading prepared remarks. Oh, I'm soooo f#ucking inspired!

        Conservative thinking in a nutshell: "There is a hole in the boat and it's sinking! Don't let that guy fix the hole because he's gay!"

        by Joshua Lyman on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:42:37 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The COFFEE CUP REBELLION is starting!! (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Back In Blue

          As I write this a new grassroots movement has begun to boil. In NJ the COFFE CUP COALITION is forming and online at Facebook and in Colorado the Coffee Party has arisen at the same moment in time! The Progressive grassroots has had enough of this shit!! Obama said he wants to here from the base and so be it!! These groups are mark my word the vanguard of a tidal wave of anger building and this is NO astro turf movement this is  millions of frustrated angry and deeply disappointed / betrayed citizens who are going to make the so called faux movement tea baggers look like a fart in a wind storm when were done! Congress is going to be hearing from us soon and so are the tea baggers and their enablers the Beck's and the Limpdongs etc.

          "It's better to die on your feet then live on your knees" E. Zapata

          by Blutodog on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 10:56:58 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  really, they've taken this (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Joshua Lyman

      bipartisanship meme to the extreme of passivity and inaction.

      Language is wine upon the lips. -Virginia Woolf

      by valadon on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 10:11:13 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Relax (0+ / 0-)

     They're gonna let his fellow Reps get him some cocoa, and put him down for his nappys. It's an election year tantrum, nothing more. Most of the Republicans wouldn't touch it with a dirty stick, didja notice? I find that interesting.

    Speak the truth; Then leave, quickly. -old Russian proverb

    by Kordo on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:35:11 AM PST

  •  Another Democrat FAIL (4+ / 0-)

    Jeez.  Is there anyone who represents me, my family, my friends, my community?

    Been wiretapped lately?

    by m00nchild on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:35:41 AM PST

    •  Nope. Nobody at all. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      KingCranky

      But the Republicans are worse.

      So long as that latter fact is enough for most Democratic voters, this situation won't change.

      Stop Obama's Wars Now! Bring the Troops Home!

      by GreenSooner on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:40:44 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Yes (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Losty, kwt3200

      only in America would Liberals and Progressives give away everything we wanted in a program for healthcare reform to the opposition party, and then call it a bipartisan victory.

      This is just another example of how this "august" body functions and how dysfunctional our government really is.

      Language is wine upon the lips. -Virginia Woolf

      by valadon on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:42:33 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  that's too pathetic (0+ / 0-)

    for words of the dems.

    Unless, if he's truly suffering from dementia, they have a plan to have a guardian appointed for him and remove him from the Senate.

  •  Democrats never miss an opportunity.... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mcurry, KingCranky, Losty, kwt3200

    ...to miss an opportunity.  Just ask yourself.  If we had say 1978 era Robert Byrd as majority leader.  Would this happen?  What about other countless LEADERS who knew the rules and how to use them.  How to get things passed using the chair and their superior knowledge to their benefit and how to let members hang themselves if necessary.

    Cowards ashamed of their own shadow.  And this does show one thing that should scare the living daylights out of Democrats and why Harry Reid must go.  If we had 90 or 95 Senators instead of 59 (58 if you toss out "Connecticut for Lieberman").  We still lose.

    Perhaps Americans aren't idiots and they are growing tired of the Democrats for a reason?  Sure the other side are idiots.  But at least they'll try to do something even if it is the wrong thing.

    •  I'm not so sure. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      valadon, TKLTKL94, kwt3200

      1964-era Robert Byrd led the filibuster against the Civil Rights Act.

      And 1978-era Robert Byrd wrote the damn filibuster rule that the GOP has been using to obstruct everything under the son.

      We need 1954-era LBJ (with 1964-era LBJ in the White House) to get things done.

      Or, better still, seriously reform the Senate.

      Stop Obama's Wars Now! Bring the Troops Home!

      by GreenSooner on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:42:54 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  He wrote the rules... (0+ / 0-)

        ..and knew how to use them.  Abuse them.  Think about how many times the Democrats got Ronald Reagan to sign legislation he would've rather not signed.  Including for instance cutting aid to the contra rebels in Nicuragua.  Something that was near and dear to his heart.

        And of course he filibustered himself.  Against civil rights legislation and against environmental legislation.  And more than a few of those times he unfortunately won.

        But it's not his politics I want to see.  It's his moxy.

  •  The Dems had hot-tubs waiting. That's just (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingCranky, TKLTKL94

    the way they roll.

  •  No substitute for victory (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    KingCranky

    Someone should tattoo that on a few Democratic arms in the Congress.

  •  What's a one-man filibuster? (0+ / 0-)

    I thought you needed 41 votes to prevent cloture.

    Free speech? Yeah, I've heard of that. Have you?

    by dinotrac on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:38:55 AM PST

    •  As I understand it (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TKLTKL94

       He just kept asking unanimous consent? Every thirty mins or so. He's got an election fight this year, I believe, so he's prolly just mugging for the cameras, and by monday, it'll all be well. Sadly, some folks here (who I could name but won't but a hint is a lot of them are in this thread, shhh) are disater junkies. Has anyone considered the benefits to the Democrats of stringing out Republican craziness for as long as possible? A lot can happen in 9 months, and the nuttier the Reps go into November looking the better. Healthcare-hatin', Conspiracy-spoutin' Rich Old Southern White Dudes?

       Something tells that brand has lost it's cachet for good...

      Speak the truth; Then leave, quickly. -old Russian proverb

      by Kordo on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:49:49 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think Bunning is retiring...but (0+ / 0-)

        it sounds like this isn't a classic filibuster.

        So what happens...they have to vote every time he asks?

        Free speech? Yeah, I've heard of that. Have you?

        by dinotrac on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 10:02:52 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Stringing them out would be great if the dems (0+ / 0-)

        ever used any of it.  They won't.  So it's a waste of time and al the while, real people are affected by this nonsense.

        ONE DOLLAR, ONE VOTE! - Supreme Court of the United States. Amend the constitution! Corporations are NOT people!! Money is NOT speech!

        by Back In Blue on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 12:54:41 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Let it be known (6+ / 0-)

    It's easier to pass a corporate bailout than a UI extension

    I am hungry for some unrest, I want to push this beyond a peaceful protest, I wanna speak in a language that they'll understand

    by AnakinSkywalker on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:40:20 AM PST

  •  Dems can't miss their weekends (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TKLTKL94, kwt3200

    at least Bunning was ready to sacrifice his...Democrats not so much.

    I did campaign on the public option, and I'm proud of it!

    by Jazzenterprises on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:42:09 AM PST

  •  Amendment 28 (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TKLTKL94
    1. Article 1, Section 3 of the Constitution is hereby repealed
    1. All persons previously called Senator at the time of this amendment shall lose their position and title upon enactment of this amendment

    I am hungry for some unrest, I want to push this beyond a peaceful protest, I wanna speak in a language that they'll understand

    by AnakinSkywalker on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:47:38 AM PST

  •  Oh sure lets back up Bunning! (0+ / 0-)

    Lets just rag on Durbin and let Bunning have all the backup he needs! lets reinforce him filibustering! WOOHOO

    Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

    by JamesE on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:50:14 AM PST

    •  no one is supporting him (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Dump Terry McAuliffe, KingCranky

      but anyone who excuses his behavior is just as responsible to those people who will not get their benefit checks next week.

      And that would be weak-kneed Democrats who are afraid to confront this sort of obstruction.  

      Bunning should be censured as surely as Shelby should have been and any Senator continuing on this destructive path of obstructing the legislative process should be expelled.

      Enough is Enough. change the filibuster rule or face this sort of Senatorial extortion at every turn.

      Language is wine upon the lips. -Virginia Woolf

      by valadon on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 10:01:34 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Ya I understand where you are coming from (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        valadon

        and I agree..just make it sound like you are more angry at Bunning then Durbin..just sounds weird..coming from a liberal blog site.

        Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

        by JamesE on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 10:08:56 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I know (0+ / 0-)

          but what are we supposed to make of this James? Our party fails over and over again to represent us, but also to represent those who have no voice.

          It's very frustrating. So we have to blame them for being indirectly or directly complicit.

          You know, we are at a dangerous crossroads right now. Anger is building in this country and it's not just the Teapartiers or Libertarians or other malcontents...we have all the makings of what precipitated the French Revolution. Now, that may seem a rather extreme claim, but if we are not careful there will be a lot of "civil unrest."

          Unemployment is not expected to drop to "normal" levels until 2014. Healthcare reform wont even kick in till then...there are no jobs on the horizon for the middle class and lower income folks. We are supporting two wars overseas.

          Language is wine upon the lips. -Virginia Woolf

          by valadon on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 10:19:19 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I agree like I said (0+ / 0-)

            I'd have some choice criticism too. I have been searching for employment for 3 years. I haven't so far partially because of this economy, partially because of my medical condition. and partially because of just plain bad luck and crappy HR departments rather hiring high school drop outs that went to jail instead of a college student wanting to make a difference int he world. I have the weight of this economy and social problems on my shoulders as much as anyone else. We have to, however, just make sure who is really for us and who are against us. In this case it can't be any more clear. Also even though the Dems may piss us off..they piss me off a lot, we can't be having diaries about how bad Durbin is, especially coming off of his momentous performance at the summit. We have to focus our anger at those who are the real problem and make a diary attacking both Bunning and Durbin. I am angry at DUrbin for not sticking it to him but I also know that that well being of the American people is his priority. We, the American people have a good role in this whole situation as well. Lets keep fighting, valadon!

            Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.

            by JamesE on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 01:29:54 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  He missed his basketball teams azzwhupping (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kwt3200

    SC  oh  man  what a bad break for him,  now if he only had to go face the kids of the unemployed this week end  but wait  Bunning  in retiring this year  he's not running for re-election  he doesn't give a chit

  •  Here's a Clever Idea (0+ / 0-)

    "ingratiation and access . . . are not corruption." -- Justice Kennedy (Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 2010)

    by Limelite on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 09:59:39 AM PST

  •  Unemployment (0+ / 0-)

    I guess a question would be, at what point should unemployment benefits be stopped? Should they be paid forever? After a while it starts to look like welfare.

  •  Durbin vs. Reid (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gooderservice

    Number two takes on Number one - the young elk challenges the old one? Is it rutting season?

    Durbin

    [number two in Senate] Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois has launched an online petition titled "Fed Up With The Filibuster" in which he urges readers to show their support for a legislative remedy to the 60-vote requirement.

    vs. Leader Reid

    Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) on Thursday dismissed an effort by some Democrats to eliminate the filibuster, saying the chamber's procedures were designed to prevent the majority party from unilaterally changing the rules.

    The Senate would be functional if it would adopt majority rule.

    by mrobinson on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 10:06:31 AM PST

  •  And this is why I am no longer a Democrat. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    gooderservice

    Great post, David. Thanks!

  •  FROM WIKIPEDIA ON JIM BUNNING (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Churchill

    On July 27, 2009, Bunning announced he would not run for re-election in 2010, blaming fellow Republicans for doing "everything in their power to dry up my fundraising."[32]

  •  2 ways to make it to the baseball hall of fame (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Churchill, gooderservice, kwt3200

    Bunning is a member of the baseball hall of fame:  There are 2 ways for a pitcher to make it to the baseball hall of fame:

    1> Command respect with overwhelming ability.

    2> Have average ability and aren't afraid to throw at the batter's head.

    Bunning definitely fit in the latter category. He was always willing to throw the brushback pitch. Like many batters in years gone by, Durbin bailed as soon as the windup started.

  •  Strom Thurmond Passed Out on the Senate Floor (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Churchill

    I wonder if any senator has ever died on the floor?

  •  Go Bunning Go; he'll cost GOP votes (0+ / 0-)

    80% of success is just showing up! I'm here! Where's Obama? UID # 57,747, since 07/07/05

    by Churchill on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 10:45:41 AM PST

  •  Tough Shit Indeed! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Churchill
  •  The scorpions are winning (4+ / 0-)

    From wikipedia,

    The Scorpion and the Frog is a fable of unknown author, though often mis-attributed to Aesop.[1] The story is about a scorpion asking a frog to carry him across a river. The frog is afraid of being stung, but the scorpion reassures him that if it stung the frog, the frog would sink and the scorpion would drown as well. The frog then agrees; nevertheless, in mid-river, the scorpion stings him, dooming the two of them. When asked why, the scorpion explains, "I'm a scorpion; it's my nature."

    The R's will always be craven, greedy, violent and evil. That's just how they are. The sooner the Dems get the fuck over trying to deal with them, the better.

    Unfortunately, it is the Dem's nature to be pussies.

  •  "Adjourned for the weekend" (6+ / 0-)

    Yeah, well, maybe I'll adjourn for the first week of November this year.  

    I want votes from them; they want votes from me.  They adjourn; I'll adjourn.

    If they can't follow through with what they say they will do, what's the point?  If they won't fight, what's the point of me fighting?

    Yeah, yeah, the republicans will win.  Ummm...

    "Centrist" refers to a politician who takes money from corporations, and then votes for those companies to become richer.

    by gooderservice on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 10:58:36 AM PST

  •  it's happy hour (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    kwt3200

    time to fold up the Democrats and put them in storage

  •  good! (0+ / 0-)

    let the republicans stop unemployment benefits

    how will that help them in November?

  •  Bunning is retiring (0+ / 0-)

    That is why he doesn't give a shit.  From Wikipedia: As of the end of September 2008, Bunning had $175,000 in his campaign account. By comparison, all other Republican senators facing competitive 2010 races had at least $850,000 at that point.[22] In the last quarter of 2008, Citizens for Bunning, as the senator's campaign committee is known, raised $27,000 from 26 separate contributions, ending the year with $150,000 in cash.[25] In mid-April, KYWORDSMITH.com reported that of the $263,000 that Bunning collected during the first quarter of 2009, over 77% ($203,383) was received from out of state, while over 10% ($28,100) was actually untouchable for another 13 months as it was contributed exclusively for use in a general election.[26] Bunning had two fund raisers scheduled in the first half of April.[27]

    In an April 2009 poll, Bunning’s approval rating was just 28%, and he trailed the four most likely Democratic candidates in hypothetical contests. 54% of voters in the state disapproved of Bunning’s performance.[28] Kentucky Secretary of State Trey Grayson announced on April 30, 2009, that he would form an exploratory committee to run for Bunning’s seat. It was speculated that this was a precursor to Bunning's retirement. "He (Bunning) told Trey to do this," one senior congressional official said of Bunning. "Why else would he tell his main rival to prepare for a run?" [29] However, Bunning said at a Lincoln Day dinner in Kentucky on 9 May that he still planned to run: "The battle is going to be long, but I am prepared to fight for my values."[30]

    In a press conference on May 19, Bunning called Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell a "control freak": "If Mitch McConnell doesn’t endorse me, it could be the best thing that ever happened to me in Kentucky."[31]

    On July 27, 2009, Bunning announced he would not run for re-election in 2010, blaming fellow Republicans for doing "everything in their power to dry up my fundraising."[32]

  •  So, Dick fought for.. (4+ / 0-)

    Bernanke, Geithner, the Too Big To Fail Profit Guarantee bill, the Bailout bill, bailouts for GM & Chrysler, Endless War in Afghanistan..

    But fighting for unemployed Americans?

    Why can't there be any REAL Democrats?

  •  Pass it through reconciliation (0+ / 0-)

    What are they going to do? Claim that reconciliation has never been used for the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act? Haha, bring it on.

    "Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the president to explain to us what the exit strategy is." - George W Bush

    by jfern on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 11:23:55 AM PST

  •  What a piece of shit (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PhilK

    On December 18, 2008, the Lexington Herald Leader reported that Sen. Bunning's non-profit foundation, the Jim Bunning Foundation, has given less than 25 percent of its proceeds to charity. The charity has taken in $504,000 since 1996, according to Senate and tax records; during that period, Senator Bunning was paid $180,000 in salary by the foundation while working a reported one hour per week. Bunning Foundation board members include his wife Mary, and Cincinnati tire dealer Bob Sumerel. In 2008, records indicate that Bunning attended 10 baseball shows around the country and signed autographs, generating $61,631 in income for the charity.[33] "The whole thing is very troubling," said Melanie Slone, Executive Director for Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington.

  •  Goddamit, this post made me cry (0+ / 0-)

    No one really cares about American families!

    "As scientific knowledge advances, it does not mean that religious knowledge retreats." - horse69 on the bnet recon C&C board

    by lonespark on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 11:42:34 AM PST

  •  WHO IS JIM BUNNING ? (0+ / 0-)

    From Wikipedia (look it up): In April 2006, Time magazine called him one of America's Five Worst Senators.[11] The magazine dubbed him The Underperformer for his "lackluster performance", saying he "shows little interest in policy unless it involves baseball", and criticized his hostility towards staff and fellow Senators and his "bizarre behavior" during his 2004 campaign.[12]

  •  WHO IS JIM BUNNING ?? (0+ / 0-)

    2004 Senate race
    Bunning was heavily favored for a second term in 2004 after his expected Democratic opponent, Governor Paul Patton, saw his career implode in a scandal over an extramarital affair, and the Democrats chose Daniel Mongiardo, a relatively unknown physician and state senator from Hazard. Bunning had an estimated $4 million campaign war chest, while Mongiardo had only $600,000. However, due to a number of controversial incidents involving Bunning, the Democrats began increasing financial support to Mongiardo when it became apparent that Bunning's bizarre behavior was costing him votes, purchasing more than $800,000 worth of additional television airtime on his behalf.

    During his reelection bid, controversy erupted when Bunning described Mongiardo as looking "like one of Saddam Hussein's sons."[7] Public pressure compelled him to apologize. Bunning was also criticized for his use of a teleprompter during a televised debate with Mongiardo where Bunning participated via satellite link, refusing to appear in person.[8] Bunning was further criticized for making an unsubstantiated claim that his wife had been attacked by Mongiardo's supporters,[9] and for calling Mongiardo "limp wristed".[7] Bunning's mental health was also questioned during the campaign.[7]

    In October, 2004 Bunning told reporters "Let me explain something: I don't watch the national news, and I don't read the paper. I haven't done that for the last six weeks. I watch Fox News to get my information."[10]

    The race turned out to be very close, with Mongiardo leading with as many as 80% of the returns coming in. However, Bunning eventually won by just over one percentage point. Some analysts felt that had it not been for George W. Bush's 20% victory in the state, Mongiardo would have won.

  •  WHO IS JIM BUNNING ??? (0+ / 0-)

    In describing an interview with Bill Clinton after the 1998 Senate elections, Taylor Branch wrote of Clinton, "He said Bunning, a former baseball player, was so mean-spirited that he repulsed even his fellow know-nothings. 'I tried to work with him a couple times,' said Clinton, 'and he just sent shivers up my spine....I know you're a baseball fan and everything, and you don't like to hear it, but this guy is beyond the pale.'"[

  •  WHO IS JIM BUNNING ???? (0+ / 0-)

    On December 6, 2006, only Bunning and Rick Santorum voted against the confirmation of Robert Gates as Secretary of Defense, with Bunning saying that "Mr. Gates has repeatedly criticized our efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan without providing any viable solutions to the problems our troops currently face. We need a secretary of defense to think forward with solutions and not backward on history we cannot change."

    Jim Bunning reportedly has blocked[13] the move to restore public access to the records of past United States Presidents which had been removed under Executive Order 13233.

    A statewide opinion poll said Bunning had a 35% approval rating, with 55% disapproving as of September 2009.[14]

    In January 2009, Bunning missed more than a week of the start of Congress in January 2009. Bunning said by phone that he was fulfilling "a family commitment six months ago to do certain things, and I'm doing them." Asked whether he would say where he was, Bunning replied: "No, I'd rather not."[15]

    In February 2009, at the Hardin County Republican Party's Lincoln Day Dinner, while discussing conservative judges, Bunning predicted that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg would likely be dead from pancreatic cancer within nine months.[16] Bunning later apologized if he had offended Ginsburg with his remarks and offered his thoughts and prayers to Ginsburg; his press release misspelled the Justice's last name twice.[17]

    Bunning was the only senator to miss the Senate’s historic Christmas Eve 2009 vote on the health care reform bill. The missed vote was one of 21 in the month of December — nearly half of all Senate floor votes — that the senator skipped. Bunning’s total of 21 missed December votes is one more than the 20 missed by 92-year-old Sen. Robert Byrd, D-W.Va., who is ailing and in a wheelchair.[18]

    On February 25 2010 Bunning filibustered unemployment insurance, COBRA, and other federal programs, citing that this extension was not pay-as-you-go. His amendment sought to find the funds from the Stimulus Bill of 2009, and declared that he supported the unemployed, but a bill such as this only adds to the growing deficit and should be paid for immediately. [19] [20] Bob Corker joined Bunning, while other senators worked to break his filibuster until 11:48 PM EST. When Senator Jeff Merkley urged him to drop his objections to vote on a 30-day extension of benefits, Bunning responded "tough shit."[21]In Bunning's closing comments to the senate floor he said Democrats were remiss in causing him to miss the Kentucky basketball game vs South Carolina.

  •  So f*cking sick of this chicken-shit n/t (0+ / 0-)
  •  What a jackass... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PhilK

    No wonder the GOP didn't back him, he's absolutely lost his freakin' mind! I live in Ky and have friends who are unemployed and are scraping just to get by, where their next meal is coming from, and he pulls some crap like this. A despicable human being.

  •  Did I understand this correctly? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PhilK, Back In Blue

    The Senate is done for the week, and those unemployed unfortunates who were counting on the extension are just shit out of luck?

    Last fall, I lost the job that provided over 2/3 of our household income. I don't know how we would survive if not for UI, so I can imagine the panic and despair these poor people must be feeling.

    The logical conclusion to be drawn from this sorry story is that Republicans are heartless bastards, Democrats are spineless fools, and the Senate is irreparably broken.

    I'm so disgusted I could just spit.

  •  So how about the Full Court Press? (0+ / 0-)

    Yeah, Bunning is a pig.  But who couldn't see something like this coming?  Who dropped unemployment extension from the jobs bill that did  pass?  Who set the schedule for this last minute debacle?

    Per Glen Greenwald:

    The primary tactic in this game is Villain Rotation.  They always have a handful of Democratic Senators announce that they will be the ones to deviate this time from the ostensible party position and impede success, but the designated Villain constantly shifts, so the Party itself can claim it supports these measures while an always-changing handful of their members invariably prevent it.

    Yet we keep sucked into chasing after the villain of the week, Lieberman, Stupak, Conrad, now it's Bunning.

    The point of the Full Court Press ( www.thefullcourtpress.org ) in seeking to file in 435 congressional primaries in 2012 is to serve notice on the ENTIRE Democratic Party, not to play the villain-chasing kabuki that at best simply gives the Democrats a bit of new blood to keep pursuing the same old same old.  We've been targeting the worst for decades, but it's the middle-of-the-road Democrats that have been killing us all along.

  •  Question for Dick Durbin (0+ / 0-)

    I have a question for you Dick Durbin:

    Just who the fuck are you working for?!?

    Regards,
    Just another unemployed, off-shored computer geek

    -8.00, -8.26 "Fascism is capitalism plus murder." - Upton Sinclair

    by djMikulec on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 12:57:25 PM PST

  •  DSCC did call (0+ / 0-)

    Last week though. I was nice to the caller. When she asked if they could count on me to make a pledge I say, "not right now, thank you." No use unloading on her. She's either a volunteer or an underpaid call center employee. Either way, my beef is with the leaders and members of Congress who have proved themselves to be all talk.

    The other night I was in the middle of one of those 24 hour marathons we tend to get sucked into in IT. Bailing out after 16 hours wasn't an option. I'm 24x7x365, no breaks because I'm over 50 and have a family at home. Our reps in Congress get a base salary that's way over my pay grade, and all the perks and "opportunities" for additional income besides (like honoraria for doing speeches or book advances). All they needed to do here was go the distance and let the other side collapse. But no, once again they wimped out.

    Sorry, no more excuses.

  •  FED UP and stopping donations - (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ky DEM

    Although she is not to blame for this surrender, I'm sorry to say I lashed out when I received a donation request from my outstanding Congresswomen Donna Edwards.

    My response is below - don't think I'll cool off anytime soon.

    I had previously donated 3 or 4 times to Congresswoman Edwards but it will be some time before I do so again.
    +++

    I am stopping any further contributions until such time as I see leadership from Democratic members of the Senate and House of Representatives.  The disgusting behavior of Senator Bunning regarding the continuation of benefits is matched by the spineless response by Democratic Leaders.
     
    Rather than keep the fight going – they adjourn.   Apparently a 59 – 1 advantage is not enough.  

    Although I know Congresswoman Edwards is not a member of the Senate, she is unfortunately the only elected official I have ever donated to.  

    My disgust with the Party is such that I am stopping donating period.

    If, or when, I see signs of forward moving leadership in the Democratic Party, then I’ll consider donating.

    I don’t expect or require a response. – Better yet, have a response ready to go when people whose benefits expired while congress went home for another long weekend call.  

    Please feel free to share this note with any/all of those out-numbered and over-matched members of the Democratic Senate minority.

    In God we trust, All others we monitor -AFTAC (-2.75, -2.67)

    by lcs on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 01:07:12 PM PST

    •  problem with this is there's no cause and effect (0+ / 0-)

      They calculate you in already, and have decided they don't care.  How about contributing to something positive, while hitting them in the primaries, and saying why.

      It's like with house-training a bad dog.  You have to whack them on the nose right after they pee on your carpet, or they don't make the connection.

  •  There are consequences... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    lcs

    ...of not disciplining Lieberman after the elections by at least taking away his committee chair and allowing him to continue to obstruct;

    ...of letting Baucus, Conrad, Nelson, Lincoln get away with such amounts of nonsense for months;

    ...of weak Reid responses to kicks to the shin;

    ...of not getting meaningful healthcare reform passed in over 6 months of process machinations in the Senate and House controlled by Democrats;

    ...of not taking the threat of losing Kennedy's seat till the morning after (the White House team acknowledged that);

    There is loss of Democratic margin among the youth voters... there are stronger Rethug candidates for many local, state, and national elections in 2010... there is potential loss of majorities in house and senate... and for sure I am NOT giving to DNC, DCCC, and DSCC this cycle till they demonstrate some balls and pass the healthcare bill.

    In a way, the country seems to marginally favor lockstep agreement to get legislation passed than big-tent all-talk no-walk Democratic Party shenanigans!

    The only reason people want to be masters of the future is to change the past - Milan Kundera

    by Suvro on Fri Feb 26, 2010 at 01:19:39 PM PST

  •  Poor out-of-work Kentuckians (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    v2aggie2, Ky DEM

    I don't doubt Bunning will convince them that HE was trying to vote FOR an unemployment extension, but DURBIN wouldn't LET HIM! In fact, if you weren't paying close attention, it would be very easy to do.

    At least I don't think they have another dyspeptic, pop-eyed, ex-baseball player to replace when he finally retires.

  •  Courting Bunnings' UP vote? he didn't vote No on. (0+ / 0-)

    the historic Senate Health Care bill.
    I know..he didn't vote at all...but..maybe he didn't want to vote no [grand kids...]; so he didn't vote at all?

    Now though: He'll be retiring. How much love does he have for Mitch and friends?

    Kabuki aside: maybe Durbin has something worked out with Bunning? Or is hoping to.

    Probably a pipe dream...But..grand kids and their future..congressional death bed confession..or take this you assholes-> [republicans who fucked him over in the past]

    Just a different take: cuz this whole thing confuses me. Tough talk from Durbin then ..Nothin.. Nothin at all.

    I thought Durbin was tougher than this.

  •  You know what these f***ers have done? (0+ / 0-)

    They have just guaranteed that my family will be unable to comply with the terms of the deal we worked out with the credit card company, which would have let us have a little breathing room until July. Now we'll go into default, with our interest rate jumping through the roof, giving us a minimum monthly payment more than any mortgage we've ever held. That's the prelude to the bankruptcy we were just barely managing to avoid.

    Thank you Jim Bunning (MF-er KY), all the small-minded, self-centered republican scum who support him, and all the democratic kabuki dancers who have abdicated their duty to serve, turning their backs on the millions of us who desperately need every single g.d.ed penny from our unemployment checks! I hope their phone staffers enjoy the weekend they've been granted by virtue of the Senate being to bleeping lazy to stand up for us, 'cuz the return to work is going to be filled with more angry phone calls than they've ever received.

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