This is what Ted Cruz’s idiotic fake filibuster was all about: parting Tea Partiers from their cash: Ted Cruz’s Fake Fight Against Obamacare Is Making Millions.
Fast forward one year and Cruz has become a superstar for the conservative movement that the Senate Conservatives Fund is looking to harness. Thanks to Cruz’s star power, they’re doing it. As Cruz and Lee’s multimedia campaign blanketed the country, the month of August, typically a snooze for D.C.-based fundraisers, yielded the SCF’s largest nonelection year fundraising month to date, at $1.5 million.
Most importantly, the SCF now has in its possession a massive email list of potential like-minded donors, thanks to the 1.5 million people who signed the defund petition on the Don’tFundObamaCare website. While “a list” may just be a roster in some circles, in the parlance of power and politics, a list is nothing less than a warchest-in-waiting for the SCF to use on behalf of its allies and against its enemies in the 2014 mid-term elections and the 2016 presidential race. It also makes the SCF the most relevant, and possibly the most powerful, conservative group in the country, including the Club for Growth and FreedomWorks.
If anyone is still confused after the Obamacare funding fight (faux filibuster and all), Ted Cruz is now a 2016 contender and the SCF’s biggest ally. Its enemies are many of the men and women he shares a cloakroom with—any Republican senator who did not join in.
Yep. John McCain was playing poker on his iPhone during the Senate hearing on action against Syria.
As the hearing continues, our ace photographer Melina Mara reports she spotted Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) “passing the time by playing poker on his iPhone during the hearing.”
Scandal! Caught playing iPhone game at 3+ hour Senate hearing - worst of all I lost!
Bad news for anyone hoping for real action from Congress on preventing horrific crimes like the Newtown massacre: Assault Weapons Ban Loses Steam.
After a meeting with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Monday, a frustrated Feinstein said she learned that the bill she sponsored — which bans 157 different models of assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines — wouldn’t be part of a Democratic gun bill to be offered on the Senate floor. Instead, it can be offered as an amendment. But its exclusion from the package makes what was already an uphill battle an almost certain defeat.
“My understanding is it will not be [part of the base bill],” Feinstein said. “It will be separate.”
Asked if she were concerned about the decision, Feinstein paused and said, “Sure. I would like to [see the bill moved], but the leader has decided not to do it.”
“You will have to ask him [Reid],” she said, when asked why the decision was made.
Clearly, this news pleases the NRA greatly:
Former Nebraska senator Chuck Hagel (R) is set to testify before his former colleagues on his nomination to become Secretary of Defense.
Several Senate Republicans have voiced opposition to their fellow party member, and may attempt to block his confirmation.
That wacky Vice President says the darnedest things.
For decades the Republican Party has been fighting tooth and nail to stop this day from ever coming: Senate Passes Tax Increases on Wealthy Americans.
WASHINGTON — The Senate, in a predawn vote two hours after the deadline passed to avert automatic tax increases, overwhelmingly approved legislation on Tuesday that would allow tax rates to rise only on affluent Americans while temporarily suspending sweeping, across-the-board spending cuts.
The deal, worked out in furious negotiations between Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. and the Republican Senate leader, Mitch McConnell, passed 89 to 8, with just three Democrats and five Republicans voting no. Although it lost the support of some of the Senate’s most conservative members, the broad coalition that pushed the accord across the finish line could portend swift House passage as early as New Year’s Day.
Many Democrats are unhappy about some of the provisions in the legislation (that’s why it’s called a “compromise”) but make no mistake — breaking the back of the anti-tax right wing is an historic achievement for the Obama administration.
After the President’s remarks on the fiscal cliff this afternoon, I switched on C-SPAN to watch one Republican after another take the Senate podium to complain bitterly about the President’s “insults.” John McCain was especially outraged about Obama’s “jokes.” Here’s the video; apparently all of this whining about their precious feewings was prompted by one line:
My preference would have been to solve all these problems in the context of a larger agreement, a bigger deal, a grand bargain, whatever you want to call it, that solves our deficit problems in a balanced and responsible way. That doesn’t just deal with the taxes, but deals with the spending in a balanced way so that we can put all this behind us and just focus on growing the economy.
But with this Congress, that was obviously a little too much to hope for at this time. (Laughter.)
OUTRAGE! HOW DARE HE!
For all the whining and kooky crybaby antics from McCain and Lindsey Graham today, it’s still not clear whether we actually have a deal to avert the fiscal cliff. But Senate Republicans made one thing very clear today: their next caper will involve holding America hostage over the debt ceiling.
Two centrist Republican senators on Friday introduced a plan to reduce the growth of entitlement spending by nearly $1 trillion in exchange for an equal increase to the federal debt ceiling.
Sens. Bob Corker (Tenn.) and Lamar Alexander (Tenn.) called on Congress to focus on entitlement reform after it addresses the impending expiration of the Bush-era tax rates. They identified the expiration of the federal debt ceiling as an opportunity to address the costly growth of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.
The new Senator from Hawaii, Brian Schatz, is promising to do something about one of America’s most intractable issues: New Hawaii Senator Pledges to Tackle Climate Change.
Sen. Schatz is about to find out how determined and irrational the climate change denial movement is in Washington DC, but he has our support. Give ‘em hell, Senator.
The replacement for the late Hawaii Sen. Daniel Inouye (D) said Wednesday that climate change is at the top of his legislative agenda.
“For me, personally, I believe global climate change is real and it is the most urgent challenge of our generation,” Lt. Gov. Brian Schatz (D), whom Hawaii Gov. Neil Abercrombie (D) tapped for the seat, said in brief comments Wednesday.
Schatz is expected to be sworn in Thursday afternoon. He will serve until 2014, and plans to run for the special election to fill the remaining two years of Inouye’s term. Schatz also said he would run for a full term in 2016.
Schatz will serve with incoming Sen. Rep. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii), who is replacing retiring Sen. Daniel Akaka (D-Hawaii).
Hirono and Schatz likely will both champion climate change.
South Carolina Senator Jim DeMint is resigning from the Senate, in order to take over as president of the right wing propaganda outfit known as the Heritage Foundation.
Sen. DeMint’s departure means that South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, a Republican, will name a successor, who will have to run in a special election in 2014. In that year, both Mr. DeMint’s replacement and Sen. Lindsey Graham will be running for reelection in South Carolina.
At the Heritage Foundation, DeMint will oversee attempts to confuse the public about climate change, propaganda campaigns to mislead Americans about the economy, and model legislation to erase the separation of church and state.
In other words, pretty much the same stuff he’s been doing in the Senate, except he’ll get paid more.