Posted by AzBlueMeanie:
Those patriotic Republicans have been more than happy to use 9/11 victims and first responders as political props for years, but when it comes down to actually doing something for them, the GOP strategy of obstructing the Democrats' agenda is more important.
Thursday night, the House brought up, under suspension of the rules, the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, a bill that would have provided up to $7.4 billion in aid to the survivors of 9/11, including all the first responders who breathed in all manner of toxins in the aftermath of the attacks. Under this procedure, a two-thirds vote is required. All but twelve Republicans, joined by four blue dog Democrats, voted against the "procedure" denying a two-thirds vote for this bill.
Joan McCarter at Daily Kos explains:
Bills that are non-controversial are often brought up under suspension of the rules, which also allows leadership to block amendments. Given the huge popularity of this bill, Dems wanted to prevent Republicans from adding a typically insane amendment to make the vote more difficult. So, prevented the opportunity to make political hay because of this procedural move, the Republicans (and a few Blue Dogs) used that as their excuse to vote against the bill.
Which brought this [angry response] from Rep. Anthonly Weiner (D-NY): "If you believe this is a bad idea, to provide health care, then vote no—but don’t give me the cowardly view that ‘if only it was a different procedure.'"
Wow!This is the kind of fire and passion and straight talk that has been missing from Democrats in Congress. This guy is a fighter from the "old school" of the Democratic Party. God, I miss the old days.
Of course, Republicans and the media villagers who carry water for them clutched their pearls and got the vapors, like Chuck Todd did today sitting in for Hardball, in which Todd tried to take Rep. Weiner to task for the "anger" and "theatrics" of his comments. Rep. Weiner told him "you're over thinking it, and they [Republicans] are spinning it."
Rep. Weiner's best line: "I think sometimes as Democrats we come into knife fights carrying library books." This scrappy fighter always brings his knife.