Our economy has survived another round of Russian roulette, or we think it has. It’s hard to be sure because the Department of Labor statistics we normally use to dipstick the economy have not been forthcoming during this shutdown over…whatever it was over.
The votes to reopen the government and pull back from a default on US sovereign debt were not a cake walk, which made watching television last night a bit like a long suffering Cowboys fan anticipating an interception in the fourth quarter.
It’s probably important to the welfare of the nation to understand the nay votes. Which ones are bat guano crazy and which ones are posturing for the gratification of voters who are bat guano crazy? The latter are, on some level, sane, and we must hope there is a limit to what they will do against the national interest in pursuit of self-interest.
In the Senate, there were 18 dead enders, with Inhofe of Oklahoma not voting. Of those 18, 10 were of the Confederate States of America and immediate border states, as we’ve come to expect.
Since I write from Texas, I can offer some insight into our Senators.
Mr. Cruz is not insane. Were he insane, he would have filibustered rather than just voted nay.
Mr. Cornyn is not insane. He is craven. He does not dare let Cruz get terribly far to the right of him.
I invite comments on the other dead enders from those who know them:
Sessions and Shelby of Alabama.
Scott of South Carolina.
Rubio of Florida.
Roberts of Kansas.
Whorehouse, I mean Vitter, of Louisiana.
Paul of Kentucky. No comment necessary here. He’s proved many times he’s bat guano crazy, and with Cruz perfecting the “let’s you and him fight” tactic, Paul has to have the inside track to the GOP Presidential nomination. Bring him on.
Coburn of Oklahoma.
The non-Confederate dead enders were Enzi of Wyoming, Grassley of Iowa, Heller of Nevada, Johnson of Wisconsin, Lee of Utah, Risch of Idaho, and Toomey of Pennsylvania.
Then the bill moved to the House, where my ignorance of the process cost me some fingernails. The voting clock was up on one side of the TV screen and the vote totals were on the other. I knew that Mr. Boehner had to produce 17 votes and Ms. Pelosi had to produce the rest and that was what I was attending to when I suddenly noticed that the time clock appeared to be ticking down much more quickly than the vote totals were going up.
Good grief! What if it ticked to zero without a majority? I did not know if the Speaker could keep the vote open or, if he could, whether he would!
It passed with about 18 seconds on the clock. I’m getting too old for this much excitement. It turns out the Speaker can hold the vote open and he did.
Here’s the official roll: http://clerk.house.gov/...
A notable nay is Paul Ryan.
Carter of Texas, who purports to represent me, voted nay and knows better.
Before putting on the smug, let us remember that a vote on a measure everybody knows has to pass and is going to pass can be a cheap opportunity to showboat, an opportunity seized once by a new Senator from Illinois, Mr. Obama, who voted against raising the debt ceiling when it was certain to pass.
Still, bat guano crazy versus pandering to those who are matters because we get to do this whole thing again early next year. When asked what will be different, the essence of the analysis is:
They won’t dare!
Really? Every Republican candidate for POTUS sitting in the Senate voted nay.