If You Want to Ruin Your Weekend

Check out Politico‘s top story this morning, “Sarah Palin:  Senate kingmaker.”  From David Catanese’s article:

Riding a four-endorsement winning streak in Republican Senate primaries this year, the former Alaska governor swept into a blueberry patch outside Kansas City this weekend looking to apply her Midas touch to the latest fortunate recipient. This time it’s Sarah Steelman, a former state treasurer running in a fractured Missouri Tuesday primary to decide who gets to take on vulnerable Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill in November.

 “With Steelman, Palin is making perhaps her boldest bet yet. Steelman — who, like Palin, likes to hunt, staunchly opposes abortion rights and touts herself as a maverick — has been running third against businessman John Brunner, who’s poured millions of his personal fortune into the race, and six-term Rep. Todd Akin.

“At least that was the case before Palin’s arrival and the ensuing glut of media exposure for Steelman.

“A win would only enhance Palin’s reputation as the most powerful down-ballot force in Republican politics.

“’She’s a rock star right now in Republican Senate primaries. She’s hit a pretty strong streak,‘ said Scott Bensing, a former executive director of the National Republican Senatorial Committee. ‘She gives the impression that she has deeply held beliefs she’s willing to take on water for and doesn’t really care what her critics think. She comes off resolute and principled.’

“Palin’s victory roster this cycle includes Indiana’s Richard Mourdock, Nebraska’s Deb Fischer, Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch and Texas’ Ted Cruz, who shattered expectations Tuesday with a 14-point win in a runoff against Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst.

No other conservative icon or entity matches her record.”  Emphasis added.

Sarah Palin, bringing the craziest of the crazies to our Senate, earning IOU’s for herself to be collected, oh, I don’t know, maybe in 2016 0r 2020.  Thanks a lot, John McCain, you foolish old goat.

 

Palin Still Doesn’t Know Anything

For someone who pushes the need for “Constitutional Conservatives” in our government, Sarah Palin herself seems ignorant of what the Constitution actually provides.

Palin says that Condi Rice would be fine for Mitt’s veep, despite being pro-choice, because “We need to remember, though, that it’s not the vice president that would legislate abortion, and that would be Congress’s role.”

Except, of course, that the vice president is president of the Senate and casts a vote in case of a tie.

Palin’s position is not what we’re hearing from pro-life groups, who have been going nuts about the Rice possibility, which isn’t going to happen.

As the White House Goes, So Goes Congress

In his column for Sunday, George Will concedes that the GOP may well not win the White House in 2012.  He urges conservatives to focus on keeping the House and taking the Senate.

But if the big win that Will foresees for Obama occurs, it will be impossible for the GOP to gain control of Congress.  The same forces that doom the GOP presidential nominee will poison those down ballot from him.

Voters are not going to reject just Mitt or Santorum as individuals, although they will certainly do that, but GOP extremism and out-of-touchness as a whole, on issues like birth control, where the current Republicans in Congress seem to be doing their utmost to alienate and infuriate moderates and independents.

George, appealing to 20% of the electorate isn’t going to win you any branch of government.

Blunt Amendment Defeated

The Blunt Amendment, which would allow an employer to deny health coverage for anything based on religious or moral objections, was defeated in the Senate, 51 to 48.

Thank you to Republican Olympia Snowe of Maine for voting against it.

Thumbs down to Republicans Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska for voting for it, as did Democrats Joe Manchin of West Virginia, Ben Nelson of Nebraska, and Bob Casey of Pennsylvania.

You’re going to be sorry, Scott Brown.

President Obama’s compromise on contraception took care of the Catholic Church’s objections.  It actually made things much easier for the Church than existing law in many states, which the Church lives with.

This issue now has nothing to do with freedom of religion and everything to do with politics.  Knock yourself out, GOP, it’s ultimately a loser for you.

Mitt’s Latest Flip Flop Sets Record

Mitt Romney may enjoy firing people, but he doesn’t seem to be doing enough of it.  His campaign staff keeps letting him down badly, as we saw when they had him address about 1,200 people in a 65,000 seat stadium.  Campaign events are supposed to be standing room only, you get a smaller venue than what you really need.

With the Blunt Amendment coming up for a vote in the Senate on Thursday, they should have known he would be asked about it and provided him with a response.  He was totally unprepared, first saying that he opposed it, and then reversing his position in less than an hour.

This amendment, which will lose, goes beyond letting an employer like the Catholic Church refuse to provide contraceptive coverage.  It says an employer can refuse to provide coverage for any medical service if the employer has a religious or moral objection to it.  So at the whim of your employer, your children might not be able to get their vaccinations, or you might not be able to get a blood transfusion.

It’s fitting that the GOP has attached this amendment to the highway bill, because it’s an exception you can drive a truck through.

The “Bah Humbug” Congress

The House Republicans are giving over-tired toddlers who hold their breath till they turn blue a bad name.  Meanwhile, more than three million Americans don’t know if they’ll get their unemployment checks after December 31, which means they don’t know if they’ll be able to buy food and pay their heating bills.  I’m sure they’re having a wonderful Christmas and Chanukah.

Eric Cantor is saying the President should go up to the Hill to negotiate the payroll tax cut/unemployment benefits/Medicare payments extension.  That’s not his job.  He’s supposed to either sign or veto the thing.  We have 535 senators and congressmen who are supposed to do the negotiating.

Cantor is also claiming that differences between the House and Senate can be resolved “in about an hour.”  Well, great, why don’t he and his big baby colleagues stop posturing and take an hour and do that?

Meanwhile, Dave Camp, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, is saying that if the Senate had just made the extension for three months, instead of two, it would have been okay.  Really?  That’s what the hold-up is?  Two months or three?

For some families, this extension is critical to their daily lives.  It’s also vital to keep the overall economy from sliding back into recession.

They are looking for a way out, a way to save face.  But it’s hard to save face when you’re a horse’s ass.

Anybody Doubt the Tea Partiers in the House Want a Bad Economy?

The House GOP’s refusal to pass the extension of the payroll tax cut and unemployment insurance that the Senate passed overwhelmingly isn’t just silly, it’s hurting the economy right now, this very minute.

70% of our economy is consumer spending, this is the week before Christmas (kind of a significant week for consumer spending!), and Americans faced with an increase in their tax bill (typically about $1,000) or a cut-off in their unemployment benefits are probably going to spend less this season.

With the surprise and disappointment of the weekend, they might be returning stuff today, rather than buying more.

Those conservatives in the House sure are revolting, in more ways than one.