Tag Archives: Senate

Wall Street’s nightmare just got worse


On Wednesday Senate Democrats confirmed Elizabeth Warren’s seat on the Senate Banking Committee. Considering Wall Street’s crucial role in President Obama’s failure to appoint her to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and the humongous wads of cash the Street spent attempting to derail her Senate run, it will be interesting to see if Warren, named “Wall Street’s worst nightmare” by Forbes, will be able to effectively usher in the regulation the big banks so desperately need–and fear.

Stiff resistance by Republicans on the Committee is a given, but I’ll be most interested to see how Wall Street-beholden Democrats respond to her efforts. In any event, there is some irony in the fact that Warren will now be regulating the institutions that fought so hard and long to bring her down.

Our government does not work any more

There have been a number of fine articles and columns recently examining the increasingly dysfunctional U.S. Senate. (see also Eric Alterman’s really important essay for a look at how the executive branch is doing.)

Norm Orenstein of the American Enterprise Institute (that’s the thoughtful conservative think tank, unlike Heritage which is entirely ideological) has an op-ed today in Times. (Yes, I am still reading the editorial page.) It is definitely worth a read. From it:

“Filibusters aren’t just more numerous; they’re more mundane, too. Consider an earlier bill to extend unemployment benefits, passed in late 2009. It faced two filibusters — despite bipartisan backing and its eventual passage by a 98-0 margin. A bill that should have zipped through in a few days took four weeks, including seven days of floor debate. Or take the nomination of Judge Barbara Milano Keenan to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit: she, too, faced a filibuster, even though she was later confirmed 99 to 0.”

This is quite remarkable. And entirely irrational.

Now, it is on to A Face in The Crowd. And by the way, Beck’s DC side show has every movement person of color on the stage. None in the audience of course cuz all two dozen of them are on the stage. An Indian too. Also I thought I saw a Pakistani.

Kyl on Kagan

‘Results-oriented’ jurist. What happened to ‘activist judge’?

Writing the platform and running for office on CSpan 3!

President McCain says good morning too

There he is, the Senator from Arizona, much beloved of the pundit class because someone in 1998 called him a maverick and this is such a sexy word that not a one of them could stop from saying it whenever they cast their adoring eyes to the man himself.

I've got mine. Now get off my lawn.

I've got mine. Now get off my lawn!

The man who spends most of his Sunday mornings on television. Because they just cannot.get.enough.of.him.

The man who is on the floor of the US Senate right now, railing against expanding access to health care to all Americans.

The man who has been on the guvmint’s health care tit his entire life. His entire life. From his childhood in a military family to his own military career to his career in politics. The man has been on government health insurnce and/or care his entire friggin’ life! (I know, I know, he spent five years as a prisoner of war. He is one of thousands who have done so. My uncle spent about three years.)

And now comes to the floor a Republican of Wyoming – he is outraged that the Dems’ damn guvmint run health care wouldn’t have given his wife a mammogram and she would have died!  Why doesn’t their program include mammograms dammit? But even more important, there shouldn’t be any damn guvmint program!

Deep stuff. Deep stuff.  I think we should all listen to John McCain all of the time, because he was a prisoner of war and he is a maverick.

Not hearing much talk about ‘prisoners of war’ on either side in Afghanistan, where it is the 146th day of the ninth year of the war.

Bunning’s got his. So what’s the problem.

Right now, Claire McCaskill and Dick Durbin having a hell of a time on the Senate floor arguing with Sen Jim Bunning (R-Ky). McCaskill just read out the names of the GOP Senators who voted for Medicare Part D in 2005 – completely unfunded and without a concern of any kind for paying for it.  I’m not even sure what the issue is yet, but this is quite unusual. And f-u-n.

Ah – here we go: the matter on the floor has to do with renewing unemployment benefits for 30 days and COBRA for 30 days. Bunning has held up this routine legislative issue for 90 days because he wants it ‘paid for’. The benefits expire Sunday night. So they’re talking. This is a good one.

McCaskill is comparing the $300 million in tax cuts for the rich on the credit card to withholding unemployment with a demand to pay for it.

Hey Sen. Bunning, hell of a place to put your foot down on deficit spending. HR4691 is the bill for 30 day extension. Don’t know if I’ll stay up late enough to see what happens.

UPDATE: This story was prominent on a lot of blogs and newsites this morning. Even Time Magazine‘s Swampland noticed it. So what I caught on CSPAN last night was indeed unusual. Glad I got to hear it.

Mrs. Brown, you’ve got a lovely daughter

And a very naughty husband. According to The Washington Post tonight:

The Senate voted Monday to advance a $15 billion jobs-creation measure, giving Democrats a key victory as they seek to reverse their declining political fortunes by emphasizing legislation to boost the economy. The chamber is now poised to pass the measure later this week.

Guess who one of those five Republicans was . . . Who? Louder,  I can’t hear you! Who?

Yup. The spanking new Senator from Masaschusetts, Mr. Scott Brown. Take that Mitch McConnell.