Search This Blog

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

The Bill Get's Debated

Moments ago, the Senate voted 51 to 50 to start debate on the healthcare bill.  Every Democrat voted NO.  Two Republicans, Lisa Murkowski and Susan Collins also voted NO.  As a result Vice President Pence voted to break the tie and he voted YEA.

This is really ridiculous.  I understand that senators can disagree and so can political parties.  I don't understand how senators can vote not even to debate a proposed bill of this importance.  A friend of mine mentioned to me that senator Collins was on one of those terminally boring Sunday morning shows this past weekend and no one asked her how she could, in good conscience, vote to prevent debate of this subject of national importance.  It would have been a good question, but it also would have put her on the spot and the media, no doubt, did not want to encourage her to change her stated position.  After all, that might hurt the Democrats' chances of blocking the repeal of Obamacare.

The real truth is that there is no excuse for any senator voting no on the motion to open debate.  This is not a bill which will clearly fail.  If the numbers were 60 to 40 against the bill, that would be one thing.  Then, it might make sense to block debate so as not to waste time.  But the bill now being debated is one which might or might not pass.  No one knows for sure yet.

The rumor mill says that senator Collins may soon leave the Senate to run for governor of Maine.  It's just another rumor; maybe it's true and maybe not.  If Collins stays on, however, she will be up for re-election in 2020.  That's a long time from now, but even so, she ought to be asked at that time how she could vote to prevent debate on this issue.

Senator Murkowski was just re-elected last November, so she has even longer than Collins before she would have to face the voters in her home state.  After another five plus years, no one is likely to remember today's vote.  Nevertheless, that vote remains a disgrace.  Murkowski owes us all an explanation for her vote today.


No comments: