What’s Our Part?

Right up front, I am not pleased that Bart Stupak has decided to retire from congress.  Also I find myself wondering what part we of the left had in his decision to retire.  It’s hard for me think of anyone who was more between a rock and a hard place than Rep. Stupak was during the entire health care debate.   I always thought (and publicly stated) that at the end of the day the congressman would return to the fold and vote in favor of health care reform.  But like many others of the left I found the congressman’s tactics enraging.  Then of course after the congressman did vote for health care reform we all got to witness a torrent of hatred from the right that sadly is becoming all too common place in American politics these days.  Make no mistake, I don’t for a moment compare the left’s treatment of Stupak before he came around to the disgusting and menacing behavior  of the right after Stupak came around and voted yes for health care reform.  None the less I don’t think we have much to be proud of in our treatment of the congressman prior to the vote.

Now don’t for a moment get me wrong, I think on the issue of “choice” Rep. Stupak is 100 percent wrong.  But on just about on every other issue he has a voting record that pretty much falls in line with my own political beliefs.  I think in the wrenching days leading up to the health care debate we on the left may have sometimes lost sight of the trees for the forest.  I think there is a lesson for us to learn here.  Consider this thread my mea culpa.



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46 responses to “What’s Our Part?

  1. Breaking News Alert
    The New York Times
    Sat, April 10, 2010 — 12:45 AM ET

    Four Miners Found Dead in West Virginia

    A late-night search for four missing miners who had been
    unaccounted for since an explosion at the Upper Big Branch
    coal mine in West Virginia on Monday ended in heartbreak
    early Saturday morning when the authorities announced that
    they had been found dead.

  2. dog's eye view

    Brian: really interesting comment.

    I think the Democratic party should be big tent, with room for pro-lifers. Although pro-lifers who value the born as well (and then some).

    I really admired GOP Rep Cao of Louisiana for supporting healthcare reform when it mattered earlier. (Maybe he would have again, had his vote been a deciding one.)

    But jeopardizing the health of American citizens like Stupak did, 45,000 needless deaths a year, holding your new President’s major domestic initiative hostage to abortion politics? Still egregious.

    I wonder if Stupak knew he was in electoral trouble no matter what, and hit it for the fences on an issue of deep personal importance to him.

    It’s a quandary. Suppose Stupak had been able to bring health insurance reform down? How magnanimous would anyone feel? I’d be mailing him Earl Grey.

    I feel for him, but what he did is very hard to get past.

    And I can’t stand the shriekers on the left any more than the asshats on the right.


    Tragic about the miners. Closure for their families, but what a sad, sad event. Hope Massey pays through the nose.

    Incident sounds preventable, but who knows?

    • dnd

      Stupak said that after 18 years in Washington, he’s tired. Tired of what, he didn’t say, and that’s fodder for speculation.
      The conspiracy theory is that before the health care debate he knew he was going to retire from the House. That would explain why he would make such an issue of a non-issue in the health care reform bill, knowing full well that this was political suicide.

      He could have gone quietly into the night, but chose to go out with a bang.

  3. Mitt Romney Wins GOP Presidential Straw Poll

    Romney triumphed by a single vote over Ron Paul, who took second place 439 votes to 438.


    Creep and creepier!

  4. nannymm

    “Creep and creepier!”

    That’s putting it mildly!

  5. Dooty

    Interesting fact was that Mitt did not even attend that conference this last weekend.

  6. Tina Fey Unveils Palin’s Next Career Move In Return To SNL (VIDEO)


    This is pretty funny.

    • dnd

      If it’s Sunday, it’s my favorite curmudgeon Ed Quillen. This week ol’ Ed weighs in on the War of Revisionist History, his take on the Confederate History Month.


      • dnd

        On CNN’s State of the Union, Candy Crowley interviewed Haley Barbour. Mostly he just regurgitated the Frank Luntz talking points and phrases. However in response to his thoughts that the health insurance mandate was unconstitutional he asked “would you think it’s constitutional if the government forced you to buy a gun?” I almost spit my coffee on my keyboard. Unfortunately, Ms Crowley didn’t parry with “what about the Militia Act of 1792?” Nor did she ask that since he was of draft age during the Vietnam war if he opposed Selective Service, certainly a mandate not all would say appears in the Constitution (he apparently had student deferments and worked on Nixon’s 1968 campaign, so I guess that gets you off the hook).

  7. dog's eye view

    What did Miss Crowley say?

    • dnd

      Crowley didn’t say anything. Of course she didn’t challenge him when he said that this is the most liberal administration in the history of America. Barbour is a cross between Newt and Palin. So I think she just let him prattle on, making a fool of himself.

  8. I’m feeling my latin today.

  9. It’s not CNN’s style to hold anyone’s feet to the fire

    • dnd

      Not always.

      BARBOUR: Well, the most left wing, it’s about spending. I mean, he has proposed a $3.8 trillion budget with a $1.6 trillion deficit. The whole budget in 1997 — when Newt Gingrich was speaker of the House, the whole budget wasn’t $1.6 trillion.

      Yet they’re proposing $1.3 trillion deficit, $1.4 trillion deficit, $1.6 trillion deficit in the first three years of the Obama administration.

      CROWLEY: But, Governor, that’s not all of his deficit. A lot of it came from George W. Bush.


  10. Wow, cut throat journalism at it’s finest. I don’t like Crowly, I don’t think she’s very good. I saw the interview, there were many times she could have challenged what he said and she let it slide.

    • dnd

      It’s pretty rare to see a talking head challenge a pol railing about the “record deficits” of the Obama administration. Tim Russert use to let pols prattle on with their b.s. only to confront them with it in later appearances.

      If you don’t like Crowley, it’s no wonder you don’t think she’s very good 😉

  11. Haley Barbour Defends Bob McDonell’s Confederate History Proclamation, Slavery Omission (VIDEO)


    She should have gone in for the kill in the above video, but she didn’t.

    • dnd

      Brian, none of the Sunday shows are adversarial, like Tweety on Hardball. They just let their guests make fools of themselves. The only Sunday show that comes close is Fox News Sunday, hence it’s not surprising that Patty Ann Browne confused Chris Wallace with Chris Matthews:

  12. Then what’s the point of watching d? You don’t think Barber should have been called out for defending bigotry? Why bother having interviews? Just let the politicians send in vids and let the networks run em.

  13. nannymm

    I agree with you, Brian. If the journalists (and I use that term very loosely) can’t ask the tough questions and call out their guests who lie and spout BS, then what is the point? While some of us do realize the lies when we hear them, the average view does not. They tune in for accurate info a few hours a week and end up getting false info. It’s no wonder we have so much anger out there. Anger and ignorance is in plentiful supply; good interviewers and journalists are not. That’s not good for our democracy.

  14. TempeBev

    Yea – Phil Mickelson won the Master’s – he’s a graduate of ASU. Also a devoted family man.

    Don’t watch the Sun am news shows. They’re on too early and I like to sleep late on the weekends. Just of bunch of big blow hearts blowing whatever they want to push at the time.

  15. dog's eye view

    Brian: ” It’s not CNN’s style to hold anyone’s feet to the fire”

    This made me laugh out loud, because it’s so true.

    It doesn’t do that much good to get after a guest’s misstatements and outright fibs 3 weeks after. The quotes are already out there as “facts” and being reinforced by repetition to those inclined to believe them in the first place.

    What was in YOUR newspaper’s corrections column today? Do you often read it?

    Russert’s “gotcha” a few months down the line is as helpful as Bob Woodward sitting on book material during a crucial presidential election.

    The eventual “gotcha” doesn’t even have that much impact because too many people think “politicians: they all lie all the time.”

    Anyhoo, much like Bev, I don’t watch the Sunday shows. Get virtually all my news from the web. TV/cable screaming kind of drives you to that.

  16. *stretches and yawns*

    Morning peeps

  17. Hey we get our share of nut bags too, look at where Bachmann is from!

  18. Huckabee On Gay Adoption: ‘Children Are Not Puppies’

    Huckabee also compared gay marriage to drug use, incest and polygamy.


  19. nannymm

    It’s hard to believe that people like Huckabee actually have followers. But they do; that’s the frightening aspect to it.

  20. nannymm

    “And always we should act in the best interest of the children, not in the seeming interest of the adults.”

    Yes we should. Adoption by a loving gay person or couple IS in the best interests of the the children. It is far better for a child than is foster care. It is far better than languishing in limbo year after year without a family, without love, without permanency.
    People like Huckabee have no friggin’ idea what they are talking about! Kids who are available for adoption just want homes and families of their own, people to love and care for them. They don’t give a damn about whether or not those people are gay or straight.

  21. Dooty

    interesting article about “the Punk Staffers” pushing back.


  22. Liberal Leah Ward Sears Mentioned as Another Supreme Court Pick for Obama


    The right will go crazy if he nominates a “wise african american woman” to the court. What fun that would be.

  23. nannymm

    Gotta stock up on the popcorn for those hearings. 🙂

  24. Breaking News Alert
    The New York Times
    Mon, April 12, 2010 — 4:16 PM ET

    Dow Closes Above 11,000 for First Time Since September 2008

    The Dow Jones industrial average closed above 11,000 points
    on Monday for the first time since the start of the financial

    The move above 11,000 was the latest milestone in a rally
    that has brought Wall Street back from the brink of economic
    collapse. It came as investors welcomed a long-awaited rescue
    plan for Greece and amid signs that American companies were
    poised to report strong first-quarter profit, with earnings
    season beginning in earnest this week.

    The Dow ended the day at 11,006.19, rising about 9 points or
    0.08 percent. It last closed about 11,000 in September 2008.

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