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The Stopped Clocks
Author: BobR    Date: 07/18/2013 13:09:25

The old saying goes that a stopped clock is right 2 times a day (this was back in the old days when clocks still had hands). The notion is that someone who seems to be wrong all the time does get it right every once in a while. This is the case with Republican politicians. Even though they support stupid stuff like rejecting a gun ban sale to suspected terrorists or ending cumpulsory education, every once in a while they do the right thing, and deserve credit where credit is due.

Sometimes this means joining Democrats in a bipartisan fashion to get something done that needs to get done. The most recent example of that is a bill being championed by senator Kristen Gillibrand (D-NY) to address sexual assault in the military. Joining her on this are senators Rand Paul (R-KY) and Ted Cruz (R-TX):
Sens. Rand Paul and Ted Cruz have joined an upstart effort to remove the chain of command from military sexual assault cases, POLITICO has learned.

The tea party favorites give the bill’s lead sponsor, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, critical conservative cover as she battles the Pentagon and hawks in both parties on her proposal to create a new prosecution system for major military crimes.
[...]
Gillibrand already has 32 cosponsors and the addition of Paul and Cruz provides a powerful political message as she continues to lobby for more votes in face-to-face meetings on the Senate floor.

So good on them. Considering I despise most of their positions, it is tough to grudgingly give them credit here, but they certainly deserve it.

Along similar lines, we have House representatives John Lewis (D-GA) and James Sensenbrenner (R-WI) joining forces to reinforce the Voting Rights Act, now that the SCOTUS has gutted its most important provisions:
Sensenbrenner echoed that message. He characterized the VRA as the single most successful anti-discrimination law of the last half-century, and warned that a failure of Congress to act would "undermine the progress that has been made over the last 50 years."

"Free, fair, and accessible elections are sacrosanct, and the right of every legal voter to cast their ballot must be unassailable," he testified. "Voter discrimination still exists, and our progress toward equality should not be mistaken for a final victory."

So there is a very real possibility that the VRA will be updated and redeployed. This is good news as states implement ever more draconian voting laws, in the form of required ID, restricted hours, and distribution of voting machines.

Sometimes, though, a Republican will break ranks with their own, and publicly disagree. House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) did just that after Senator Lindsey Graham (R-NC) suggested that the U.S. should boycott the Olympics in Russia because they are not extraditing NSA leaker Edward Snowden:
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) lit off a firestorm Tuesday when he told The Hill the U.S. should consider a boycott if the National Security Agency leaker gets asylum from Russia.

The USOC said this would only punish U.S. athletes, while Boehner said Graham was "dead wrong."

"Why would we want to punish U.S. athletes who've been training for three years to compete in the Olympics over a traitor who can't find a place to call home?" Boehner (R-Ohio) told reporters when asked about the comments.

He's exactly right about that, and Senator Graham is completely wrong. The boycott would make us look petty, as well as uncaring about the kids (mostly) who've waited for their Olympic moment their entire lives. So kudos to Boehner for saying the right thing instead of providing cover for his party-mate. Kudos to him as well for supporting what appears to be similar to a key component of the DREAM Act.

So now that we've given credit where credit was due, we now return you to our normal coverage of Republican stupidity, like House Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) saying that killing the immigration bill will make Hispanics realize that Republicans actually like them.

No - really...

96 comments (Latest Comment: 07/19/2013 01:40:37 by Raine)
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