Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

This blog is devoted to a variety of topics including politics, current events, legal issues, and we even take the time to have some occasional fun. After all, blogging is about having a little fun, right?

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Thursday, July 19, 2007


We were going to take the day off, and simply try to stay as cool as possible. (It sucks living in the other four-letter word for Hell -- Mesa. We rarely get rain during the summer monsoons.) But last night afforded us some of the best drama/comedy that TV could offer. On C-Span II, the Senate was deliberating a bill. Generalissimo Duane has the details:

After Democratic leader Harry Reid’s MoveOn.org all-night session Tuesday night, a move that resulted only in helping unify the weak-kneed Republicans who were peeling away from continued support of the Petraeus surge in Iraq, McConnell, the Republican leader, served notice to anyone watching C-SPAN that he now runs the Senate.

The Senate spent much of the day discussing the merits, or demerits, of HR 2669, the Student Loans and Grants Act. Maybe it was the culmination of a long week already, or maybe it was the upper chamber being lulled off guard by the increasingly senile senior Senator from West Virginia, Robert Byrd, who spent 25 minutes decrying the plight of the helpless fight dog in response to the weird Michael Vick story in the news, but tonight, McConnell and the Republicans decided to take control of the Senate. The Republicans offered amendment after amendment to the bill, catching the Democrats flat-footed. In case you want to hear about the plight of the fight dog,
here’s Robert Byrd’s Senate floor address.

After a couple of Republican amendments failed, Mitch McConnell took to the floor and offered his own amendment, which was a Sense of the Senate that Guantanamo detainees not be allowed released or moved to U.S. soil. To conservatives, this obviously makes sense. To liberals, especially California’s Dianne Feinstein, one of the chief proponents of the effort to close the detention center at Gitmo and relocate these detainees into the American justice system, especially when tagged onto a student loan and grant bill, you’d think this measure would go down in flames. Except a funny thing happened. The bill was titled in a way that you had to vote yes to vote no, and no to vote yes. The final vote was 94-3, officially putting the Senate on record as saying terrorist detainees shouldn’t be moved to the U.S. Before the Democrats, who clearly hadn’t read the amendment, realized they screwed up, the vote was recorded.

Jim DeMint of South Carolina was the author of the next amendment in line, had just gotten the consent of Bernie Sanders, the presiding officer, to order the yeas and nays. Up stepped Massachusetts senior Senator Ted Kennedy, now obviously aware that he and his colleagues just got bamboozled, and went on a full-throated rant, with reckless disregard to obvious hypocrisy, and blasted DeMint and the Republicans for slowing down the works in the Senate. The rant is worth hearing,
so here it is.

Once the rant was over, Kennedy threw the Senate into a quorum call so that the Democrats could regroup. The session progressed well into the night, and McConnell could easily have rested on his laurels, but he wasn’t finished. Colorado Democrat Ken Salazar offered his own irrelevant amendment, asking for a sense of the Senate that President Bush not pardon Scooter Libby. McConnell, with that wry smile he offers when he’s up to something, countered with a secondary amendment to Salazar’s, saying that if it’s fair to bring up the Senate’s view of potential future inappropriate pardons, maybe we should also have a sense of the Senate of past inappropriate pardons, and proceeded to maneuver the Senate clerk into reading off the laundry list of Clinton administration pardons, including those of Marc Rich and others, which again set the Democrats off in a tailspin. After throwing the Senate back into a quorum call for half an hour, the beleaguered Harry Reid came out and pulled the Salazar amendment off the floor. He’d been Mitchslapped twice in one night.

Now call this dirty pool if you want to, but this is how the Senate works. Nof offense, it's no dirtier than putting, shall we say, $28 billion in pork bribes to get House members on board with a retreat bill; follwoed up by another $4 billion tacked on by Senate Democrats. Whereas Harry Reid and his party may have the majority in the Congress, that doesn't exclude the minority party from moving on things they'd like to see happen.

In terms of chess games, the gambit that Mcconnell ran last night was stellar. It was fun to watch, but what was even more memorable is how the Democrats reacted after they realized they'd been hornswaggled. There are times where I wish I had TiVo, or a video tape waiting to be used. Last night's little gem from the Senate floor was definitely something that needed to be kept for posterity's sake.

Before I close out this post, there's another matter I'd like to address. As many know we're keeping an eye on the Weekly Standard/TNR story about the phony soldier. Over at Hot Air, Bryan puts another nail in this poor liar's coffin. As if his reasoning wasn't enough, there's more from Michael Goldfarb regarding some deep digging by the blogs about "Scott Thomas." I posted last night that both Marcie and I were beyond skeptical after reading the piece. Now there's simply no way we can buy this story from the pseudo-soldier quoted by The New Republic. At this point, we're on Bryan's side:

“Scott Thomas” is bogus. He’s a fraud. He might be Clifton Hicks, he might be someone else, but whoever he is, it’s become clear that he has an eye for made-up detail but doesn’t know much about reality.

The New Republic will have to out “Scott Thomas” in order to protect its own credibility. It’s that simple.

This story stinks to high Heaven. It's time the New Republic came clean, and either gives him up, or drops him completely, issues a retraction, and an apology to it's readers.

Publius II


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