TLP: Two Glasses, Half Full at Best

It's gotta suck, don't you think? Majority in the House. Majority in the Senate. Control of the White House.

And still.

The Huffington Post

As the Senate turns its attention to restructuring regulations for Wall Street, Democrats who demand strong and comprehensive reform are concerned that they may have already lost the messaging wars.

Last week, when Senate Banking Committee Chairman Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) announced that he was essentially giving up hope for Republican cooperation in crafting regulatory reform, citing a deep "impasse" with ranking member Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), the political barely registered surprise.

For weeks, if not months, it's grown increasingly clear that Republicans have been unwilling to jump on board a reform package that involves more regulatory oversight. ... But at a time when the situation is growing more dire, Democratic party officials are worried that there is not enough momentum to generate a compelling campaign to pass regulatory reform.

"Everyone has been so focused on health care that few have focused on financial reform," acknowledged Stan Greenberg, a prominent Democratic pollster.

And now, with the loss of the supermajority in the Senate and whatever that means, Democrats on Capitol Hill are feeling fucked over. And frightened of Scott Brown. Sorry, I didn't see that he had that big a pair.

So who does? Anyone on the Democratic side?

firedoglake may have found someone, unlikely though it may seem.

In an interview with Roll Call, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi made the case for reforming the Senate rules and using reconciliation.

“A constitutional majority is 51 votes,” Pelosi said in an interview Tuesday with Roll Call. “If in fact the Republicans are going to say nothing can be done except by 60 percent, then maybe we all should be elected with 60 percent. It isn’t legitimate in terms of passing legislation.”

On this point, Pelosi is completely right. A 3/5 threshold in the Senate appears nowhere in the Constitution, and super-majority requirements for every action in the Senate makes a mockery of the idea of democracy. If a popularly elected majority is unable perform even the most basic functions of governing, are you even a Democracy any more?

I guess we'll see what Nancy's got to swing.

The Lazy Paperboy

Some say he’s half man half fish, others say he’s more of a seventy/thirty split. Either way he’s a fishy bastard.


OldSouth said...

Miss Nancy never fails to entertain.

In early 2005, when the Republican majority in the Senate pointed out that 51 constituted a majority, the Dems screamed about the unfairness of it all, and demanded the 60-vote supermajority rule remain in place.

Senator Frist, that paragon of political courage, caved.

Now to learn that Miss Nancy has actually read both the Constitution and a third-grade math text?


jeff said...

we're not a frickkin' democracy. We're a republic. The whole point of enabling supermajorities is to make it hard for the federal government to do things.

The framers (and plumbers!) knew that government was necessary, but not the answer to each of our problems. Some would seem to think the challenge of government is getting things reality, the challenge is making it hard for our government to do things to us.

goldtracker said...

Agree with jeff.

What the Democrats fear, in fact all of DC fears, is the American public. And it ought to be that way. The unrest that they are seeing in Tea Parties and town meetings has them rocked back on their heals because whether or not they vocalize it, the politicians know they are thin ice and that the jig is up.

My concern is that DC doesn't fear the American public enough.

TLP, see what you started?

Jeff gave me chills with "Some would seem to think the challenge of government is getting things reality, the challenge is making it hard for our government to do things to us."


Hey OS, I think asking her to perform third grade math is expecting WAY too much. I'd say let's just have her stand around and look pretty but.... ugh. Can't even manage THAT, can she?

Hal, I'm with you 100%. They believe in the fat, stupid, complacent America that they've known all these years and are not counting on a majority of us turning off the teevee, getting off the sofa, and grabbing the flaming pitchforks. Sadly, I'm not really holding out for that either. It's much easier to deny what appears to be painfully obvious to some of us (*cough*) and pretend "new normal" is OK. Where's the outrage? The riots? I'm waiting anxiously for election season, we'll see then how "outraged" America is and go from there.


JDA, I really didn't mean to start anything, but am glad to hear what everyone has to say.

I'm usually just happy to keep the charging bulls from hooking my nuts.