Esoteric Dissertations from a One-Track Mind

September 22, 2007

Senate Condemns MoveOn Ad

Filed under: politics — codesmithy @ 9:18 am

Twenty-two Democrats came across the aisle to favor a non-binding resolution condemning an advertisement run in the New York Times by Again, most news organizations just show the “General Petraeus or General Betray Us? Cooking the Books for the White House” portion of the ad, leaving the rest of the text completely unreadable. I think it is clear that news organizations don’t get this world wide web thing, since you can link directly to the ad, and give readers context, instead of just emphasizing the most controversial and least material aspects of it. I will demonstrate how easy it is. Here is the PDF off of the MoveOn website along with background information.

Here is the list of democrats that voted in favor of condemnation (trimmed from this list)

  1. Baucus (D-MT)
  2. Bayh (D-IN)
  3. Cardin (D-MD)
  4. Carper (D-DE)
  5. Casey (D-PA)
  6. Conrad (D-ND)
  7. Dorgan (D-ND)
  8. Feinstein (D-CA)
  9. Johnson (D-SD)
  10. Klobuchar (D-MN)
  11. Kohl (D-WI)
  12. Landrieu (D-LA)
  13. Leahy (D-VT)
  14. Lincoln (D-AR)
  15. McCaskill (D-MO)
  16. Mikulski (D-MD)
  17. Nelson (D-FL)
  18. Nelson (D-NE)
  19. Pryor (D-AR)
  20. Salazar (D-CO)
  21. Tester (D-MT)
  22. Webb (D-VA)

However, the Democrats were unable to bring enough Republicans across the aisle to obtain cloture on an amendment to a bill that would guarantee troops as much time at home as they were deployed in Iraq or Afghanistan. The reasoning behind the amendment was simple, as the debate for or against this war wages on, at least we should be able to put partisanship aside and place some limit on the time a soldier spends in the combat zone in relation to being at home. An equivalent amount of time seems fair and not out of proportion with previous wars, especially since this particular one has no end in sight. How many Republicans would cross the aisle?

  1. Coleman (R-MN)
  2. Collins (R-ME)
  3. Hagel (R-NE)
  4. Smith (R-OR)
  5. Snowe (R-ME)
  6. Sununu (R-NH)

Six. I could understand maybe condemning the ad to get the Webb amendment passed, but this isn’t even tit-for-tat. The Democrats sold out. The Democrats are so scared of the attack ads the Republicans would run if they didn’t vote in favor of condemnation that they completely capitulate. But, hey, where are people in the MoveOn organization going to turn? The Republicans? A Third-Party?

I can’t help but imagine a bunch of Democrats sitting around a table talking about all the political gains they are making by voting the “right” way. As if they are covering all their bases. As long as they stay in office, it doesn’t seem to make a difference whether or not they are doing what they were elected to do: bring this war to a conclusion, stop the corruption and abuse of power in the executive branch, and protect our civil liberties. Instead, they seem to be content with just being slightly less pro-war than the Republicans to stay in power.

However, I am of a different view. As John F. Kennedy put it “… there is little value in insuring the survival of our nation if our traditions do not survive with it.” This requires that those with power take a stand, although it may take those that they would condemn to show them how.


  1. […] makes up his mind before announcing so, and is frequently not open to other options on the table. Based on recent congressional performance, it is tough to believe that the current Congress would effectively oppose military action on Iran. […]

    Pingback by Seymour Hersh: Shifting Targets « Esoteric Dissertations from a One-Track Mind — October 1, 2007 @ 10:16 am

  2. […] Democrats are more than happy to play the non-binding oversight role, aware not to poke to hard and fully aware of Republican safe words. Democrats could have grilled General Petraeus in his congressional testimony. They didn’t. Instead, they rushed to condemn anyone who would dare question where the General’s loyalty lies, to the President or to the people. Leading Democrats are faster and show more conviction criticizing their own base than they ever show…. […]

    Pingback by On The Impeachment Stand-still « Esoteric Dissertations from a One-Track Mind — November 30, 2007 @ 10:28 am

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