Friday, February 15, 2013

'Toontime: Name that Lobby

[credit: R.J. Matson, St.Louis Post Dispatch]
Wackydoodle axes: But can y'all handle them snakes?

One would think that a former Senator, decorated Vietnam combat veteran, and friend of the newly appointed Secretary of State and a Republican to boot is a natural pick for the office of Secretary of Defense. But not in today's snake pit of a Senate chamber. All Chuck Hegel had to do was use a politically incorrect term for a known fact--Israel has a highly influential Washington lobby--and dare to oppose the Iraq adventure to garner a filibuster by his own party members. Majority leader Henry Reid, who failed to reform the filibuster rule at the beginning of the new Congress, also failed to garner the 60 votes needed to approve Hegel's nomination against Senator Lindsey Graham's (R-SC) opposition. The vote to end debate was 58 to 40. That is the first ever filibuster of a nominee for Secretary of Defense; only twice before since 1917 has a cabinet-level nominee been subjected to a supermajority vote. Another vote on the nomination is expected after the Senate returns from a recess that Democrats expect to win, but it gives Zionist fanatics another ten days to derail Hagel's nomination.