Last night, Jon Stewart delivered another excellent segment showing how Senate Republicans have blocked veterans benefits and the military sexual assault bill in order to try and stoke a war with Iran.
Video and full transcript below the fold.ANDREA MITCHELL (2/25/2014): Kansas Republican Senator Jerry Moran has now blocked a long-delayed floor debate on the sexual assault in the military issue, insisting that it be linked to new sanctions on Iran.I stand corrected. (shocked audience response) Apparently the Shame-O-Meter goes to 11. I guess my question is, why did these Senators get to stay in office?
Now obviously, the failure of this bill to help our veterans did get some attention and some shaming — your Hayes, your Cuomo, made a point of discussing this travesty. But the outcry disparity between the instantaneous Travolta name-flub shaming, and the relative lack of shaming aimed at Republican Senators fucking over veterans shows, I think, a real problem with our nation's Shame-O-Meter.Jon also looked at Afghan president Hamid Karzai's hypocrisy over U.S. involvement.
There's the problem there. It's out of whack. (audience cheering and applause) You got your dick pic. Here's your problem. You got your dick pic tweets where shafting veterans should be. Just gotta flip those. All the elements for a good shaming are in place with this veterans bill. Hypocritical arguments against it.CHRISTINE ROMANS (2/28/2014): They said the $24 billion dollar price tag would bust the budget.So the VA is wasteful, often ineffective. This is true. And adds to the debt for this bill. But apparently those were things that these Senators didn't worry about in 2008, when they voted to continue funding the Iraq War despite the Pentagon being unable to account for a missing $15 billion dollars worth of shit that we bought! But that was different! When you spend money and you're away from home, you're allowed to splurge! You're on a... war-cation. (audience laughter)
SEN. JEFF SESSIONS, R-AL (2/26/2014): It's not paid for in any way. It's all borrowed money.
SEN. RICHARD BURR, R-NC (2/25/2014): If the VA is already failing to meet its obligations to veterans, is it wise to extend its mission even further? Of course not.
We've got veterans condemning this vote.CHRIS HAYES (2/28/2014): The American Legion saying, "There was a right way to vote and a wrong way to vote today, and 41 Senators chose the wrong way. ... Inexcusable. ... I don't know how anyone who voted 'no' today can look a veteran in the eye and justify that vote."(whispers) The trick is they don't look them in the eye. They look right here. (points at forehead) So much easier to fuck people over when you just look at the forehead.
What does it take to shame these Senators? Do I need to bring a nun out here? Can I get a nun out here? Let's get a nun out here. Give them... right there. There you go.
Is that what it's gonna take? Is that what it's gonna take for you to act responsibly? Do you have anything that can save this, Senators?SEN. RICHARD BURR, R-NC (2/25/2014): I have in my bill a piece of legislation that's co-sponsored by 59 Senators, bipartisan.All right, now you're talking, now you're talking. Sister, you can go. I didn't realize that. So you've got something, 59 Senators, bipartisan, you've attached an amendment to the veterans bill that I guess you think would fix any issue that you had with it. And you've got bipartisan support for it. What is it?
SEN. RICHARD BURR, R-NC (2/25/2014): The Iran sanctions bill.MOTHERFUCKER!!!!! Iran sanctions! You're putting an Iran sanctions amendment on the veterans benefit... FUCK IT!! Sister, come back in here! Come back in here! Come back in here!
SISTER JESSICA: Well you done it now! Who wants to taste some of these nunchucks?
Actually, it's interesting. In Japan, it's referred to as nunchaku.
All right, all right, nunchucks. Nunchucks it is. Listen, let's go over here. How do you justify attaching the Iran sanctions bill to the veterans benefits bill?SEN. RICHARD BURR, R-NC (2/25/2014): This is the only way we can get this to the floor. Because we're denied any other attempt to do it.(motions single tear dropping down face) Boo-boo-da-boo-boo. Boo-boo-da-boo.
You're right. You're the victim here. You've been denied something that you need by an impersonal government bureaucracy. How can anyone know the anguish that you must feel?
But that, of course, wasn't the worst explanation of why the Iran sanctions bill is a relevant add-on to the veteran benefits bill. This was the worst.SEN. MARCO RUBIO, R-FL (2/26/2014): If in the end these negotiations fail — as I tragically have to tell you they are destined to fail — and Iran retains the enrichment capability ... I would argue to you that it actually is relevant. Because it is our men and women in uniform that we're going to turn to when this thing ends up the way I know it will. And ask them to take care of this problem.You get it? We can't afford to properly take care of our existing veterans, when we know how many more veterans we're about to create with our inevitable war with Iran. It's just bad economics! That's gotta be the highest rating on the Shame-O-Meter.
ANDREA MITCHELL (2/25/2014): Kansas Republican Senator Jerry Moran has now blocked a long-delayed floor debate on the sexual assault in the military issue, insisting that it be linked to new sanctions on Iran.I stand corrected. (shocked audience response) Apparently the Shame-O-Meter goes to 11. I guess my question is, why did these Senators get to stay in office? Maybe if we frame their actions in ways that we know generate real outrage in America, by prioritizing sanctions on Iran over the health and safety of our existing veterans, I think these Senators may have just tweeted out a picture of their enormous balls.
(audience laughter and applause)
Now can we kick them out? We'll be right back.