When the idea to start this blog began, I had no intention of it necessarily becoming an anti-Republican, anti-Trump blog. I could easily become a Republican tomorrow with the right leadership and policy positions that aligned with my ideals. We’re not there yet, but I think it’s worth remembering that the segregationists, Senator Strom Thurmond and George Wallace – were Democrats – so parties change.
So I fully acknowledge that my “love affair” with Democrats can all be temporary. I am politically a cheap slut and will go to whatever party that I believe is doing the right thing. I’m very easy that way.
As of today, Republicans routinely attempt to screw over the American people while Democrats only sometimes bang their constituents when they least expect it. Those are not good odds for the average Joe the Plumber, but I would rather take a sometimes unwanted banging as opposed permanently being bent over the table.
So in this past week of screwing, Democrats proved that they can be weasels too and that in our anti-Trump fervor, they cannot be left unwatched or off the hook either. In this climate, everyone needs to be called out on their shit.
Bernie Sanders sponsored an amendment to the 21st Century Cures Act – which would allow prescription drugs to be imported from Canada to help reduce prices in this country through competition. The amendment had bipartisan support. However, because there are assholes in every organization, some Democrats apparently had an attack of conscience and could not support the bill.
In defense of Trump (can’t believe I typed that) and the politics he represents, this is what he tapped into. I would bet money that most of his voters don’t even know this vote happened or how a simple yay or nay could affect their lives positively or negatively. They don’t know policy, but that can feel policy. Besides the blatant sexism and racism and anti-other sentiments Mr. Trump stoked this election, he successfully tapped into a feeling of dread about our institutions and how they don’t work for the average citizen and when you look at a vote like this below – it’s hard to argue that. I think that view is overly simplistic and no big on details, but I get it. And even with that, I personally don’t believe you turn to a stooge like Trump, but many Americans have.
To be clear, had these 12 senators had voted yay, the amendment would have passed.
The list of Democrats who did not support the amendment are below – with the year they are up for re-election:
Michael Bennet (D-CO) – 2022
Cory Booker (D-NJ) – 2020
Maria Cantwell (D-WA) – 2018
Thomas R. Carper (D-DE) – 2018
Bob Casey, Jr. (D-PA) – 2018
Chris Coons (D-DE) – 2020
Joe Donnelly (D-IN) – 2018
Martin Heinrich (D-NM) – 2018
Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND) – 2018
Bob Menendez (D-NJ) – 2018
Patty Murray (D-WA) – 2022
Jon Tester (D-MT) – 2018
Mark Warner (D-VA) – 2020
Not surprisingly, all of the Senators who did not support the amendment all have their mouths agape at the money trough of the pharmaceutical companies. They have all received hundreds of thousands of dollars in donations from pharmaceutical companies. (Campaign finance reform is needed in this country, but that’s a discussion for another day).
Maybe they voted their conscience, as Senator Booker’s office talked about “safety concerns.” More probable is that they want to make sure they collect those coins.
Now to my earlier point about Republicans routinely screwing over the American people and Democrats sometimes doing holds true even in this vote. It is not a surprise that it was Bernie Sanders and not say, Mitch McConnell, who sponsored this amendment. It’s not a surprise that a majority of Democratic senators did support the amendment and that a majority of Republicans did not.
But 12 Democratic Judas defections is a significant number and needs to be called out.
Many progressives are already calling for these Democrats to face a primary challenge during their upcoming re-election bids. I am not sure if this one vote alone should cause them to lose their seats. There are other issues that will come before them, and that will be important to the country – where they land and how they vote should be considered. We are a representative democracy, after all, you don’t always get what you want. We also have to be careful of the alternatives, but we definitely should be watching these folks.
Personally, I will really keep my eye on Senator Booker who is charming, intelligent, attractive, and often says the right things. But if he wants to go down the screwing path, it should not be forgotten if he decides to run for President in 2020 as is rumored. I also will keep my eye on Senator Casey, who represents my home state of Pennsylvania. Pennsylvania has disappointed me in a variety of ways recently. Those fun and games of going red in this last election after being blue for so long hurt my heart. Maybe the Keystone State needs a senator change too.
To the handful of Republicans like Senator Ted Cruz who did vote for the amendment, thank you. I just shuddered, I praised Ted Cruz. I think I am developing a rash! I can’t see. Oh, my stomach. I jest, but only a bit. Right is right folks, I suppose one thank you won’t kill me.
People should remember these names. Keep a closer eye on their voting records. If 90% of their records make sense, but they did this – not sure if that means they should lose their seats. But this view requires Americans to pay attention, for all of us to stay engaged. You don’t get angry and vote for the uneducated schoolyard bully who seemingly only knows how to break things to get your voice heard.