Thursday, December 16, 2010

Lame-Duck Session - #2479 - Oh My: Standalone Don't Ask Don't Tell Passes House as Olympia Snow Flips to Yes in Senate - Hot Air (2) Gallup: Congress His New Low in Approval - Hot Air (3) Breaking: Brown to Back DADT- Hot Air

They already passed an amendment to repeal DADT back in May, but that was part of a broader defense bill. Today’s vote was on the standalone DADT bill that Lieberman and Collins are hoping to put in front of the Senate next week. The vote in May: 234-194, with just five Republicans voting yes. The vote today: 250-175, with 15 Republicans in the majority. (Among the 10 who flipped to yes this time: Jeff Flake.) It was smart of Pelosi to force a vote in the House, just as it was smart of Reid to table the vote on the DREAM Act so that the House could go first. In each case, the fact that the lower chamber’s already passed a corresponding bill ratchets up the pressure on Senate fencesitters. In fact, it’s already paying dividends. Olympia Snowe was one of the 40 no votes last week on the defense bill that had a DADT repeal provision in it, but suddenly on the standalone bill she’s had a change of heart: “After careful analysis of the comprehensive report compiled by the Department of Defense and thorough consideration of the testimony provided by the Secretary of Defense, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the service chiefs, I support repeal of the ‘don’t ask, don’t tell’ law,” Snowe said in a statement.  Read more.........

Gallup: Congress Hits New Low in Approval - Hot Air - And I’ll bet you thought that was impossible, didn’t you? Congress has been plagued by low approval numbers for decades, although the numbers rose from their post-Watergate gloom during Republican control from 1994-2005, remaining mainly above 40% until the public lost confidence in Congress again. During Democratic control over the last four years, approvals remained mainly in the historic 20-40% band … until the lame duck session. Now Gallup shows approval plunging to 13%, and the difference is Democrats:  Americans’ assessment of Congress has hit a new low, with 13% saying they approve of the way Congress is handling its job. The 83% disapproval rating is also the worst Gallup has measured in more than 30 years of tracking congressional job performance.  Read more.........


BREAKING:  Brown to Back DADT Repeal ABC News reports that Scott Brown has announced that he will support a stand-alone repeal of “don’t ask, don’t tell,” ending the expulsion of gay and lesbian troops from the military. Brown’s decision gives Harry Reid 61 votes, enough to pass a cloture vote for the policy, and one final hurrah for the Democratic-controlled 111th Session — if he can fit it into the schedule:  Massachusetts Republican Scott Brown today voiced his support for a stand-alone repeal of the military’s Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy, bringing the bill one vote over the 60-vote threshold that it will need to reach if and when the Senate votes on the measure in the coming weeks.  “Sen. Brown accepts the Pentagon’s recommendation to repeal the policy after proper preparations have been completed. If and when a clean repeal bill comes up for a vote, he will support it,” said Brown spokesperson Gail Gitcho.  Brown’s backing means that – on paper – supporters of the repeal have61 senators in favor of the bill.  Read more........  Sure wish I could get back my donation to his campaign....you can never count on his vote, why am I surprised?

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