The Tempest

Not Exactly Shooting For \”Miss Congeniality\”

Oh, what a beautiful mourning…(for ex-GOP Leadership)

Posted by Daniel on Thursday, January 4, 2007

Oh, what a beautiful dayyyy. That’s B – to the – E – to the – A – to the – UTIFUL!

Can you feel it? I can…and I’m about 1500 miles away from it. Oh, if only to BE there to see it live and in person!!

I refer, of course, to the Democrats officially taking over Congress this morning. I’m not ashamed to say that this event has me moister than a Duncan Hines cake!! 🙂

The Democratic takeover arrives with congressional leaders and President Bush stressing bipartisanship — but with indications emerging of the partisan fights to come.

Democrats are ready to take control of both houses of Congress today after spending most of the last dozen years in the minority, with plans to quickly raise the minimum wage and toughen lobbying rules.

And a national poll released this week showed Democrats have strong support for nearly all the measures they want to pass in their first days in charge. No big surprise there, as Republicans have alienated most voters with their utter lack of accomplishment and oversight of the Executive.

In a statement in the White House Rose Garden on Wednesday, Bush urged Congress to make the tax cuts passed during his administration permanent and grant him line-item veto power, which would allow the president to cut specific spending from a bill without killing the entire measure.

And in an opinion piece published in Wednesday’s Wall Street Journal, Bush wrote that Democrats now have a responsibility to avoid creating a “stalemate” by passing bills “that are simply political statements.”

“If a different approach is taken, the next two years can be fruitful ones for our nation,” Bush wrote.

The Supreme Court killed a previous law giving the president line-item veto power in 1998, and Hoyer said he opposes renewing it.

Reid defended the Democrats’ legislative agenda.

“There is nothing political about finding a policy to end the war in Iraq, raising the minimum wage, achieving energy independence or helping kids afford college,” Reid told The Associated Press.

House Republicans, now facing life in the minority for the first time since 1994, complained that the Democrats are cutting them out of setting House rules. They urged Pelosi and other Democratic leaders to adopt the same “minority bill of rights” that Democrats had urged in 2004.

Though Republicans rejected that call at the time, Rep. Adam Putnam, a Florida Republican, said Democrats promised Americans “a new way of doing business” during last year’s campaigns.

Republicans want guarantees that they will be able to offer substitute legislation and amendments to bills as they move through the chamber. Hoyer said Democrats would adopt such rules after their 100-hour package passes.

The revived talk of a minority bill of rights, said Rep. Louise Slaughter, shows Republicans are “terrified we’re going to treat them the way they treated us.”

“But we will not. We’re going to treat them much better,” said Slaughter, a New York Democrat and the incoming Rules Committee chairwoman.

Democrats also promise to beef up oversight of the Bush administration.

The new head of the Senate Judiciary Committee, Vermont Democrat Patrick Leahy, is already butting heads with the Justice Department over documents relating to the interrogation of suspected terrorists. And the incoming chairmen of the Armed Services and Foreign Relations committees have already announced plans to hold hearings on the war in Iraq.

Hoyer said he believes the Democrats’ first six bills “are overwhelmingly supported by the American people.” The poll conducted by Opinion Research Corp. found strong support for five of the six.

“We see the first 100 hours as a mandate from the American people,” Hoyer said. “We told the American public, ‘If you elect us, this is what we will do immediately.'”

Eighty-seven percent of those polled said they want to allow Medicare, the federal health insurance program for seniors, to negotiate for lower drug prices. Only 12 percent opposed the idea.

An increase in the minimum wage drew 85 percent support. And 84 percent supported cutting student loan interest rates.

Implementing the 9/11 commission’s recommendations had the support of 64 percent of those polled. Sixty-two percent favored funding embryonic stem-cell research. But the public was split 49-49 on the wisdom of cutting tax breaks for oil companies.

The poll found 75 percent support for a crackdown on lobbyists’ influence. And 79 percent said they would favor establishing an independent panel to enforce ethics rules.

In addition, 77 percent said they want to see “significant changes” to U.S. policy in Iraq.

Pollsters interviewed 1,019 American adults on December 15-17. The survey has a sampling error of 4.5 percentage points.


One Response to “Oh, what a beautiful mourning…(for ex-GOP Leadership)”

  1. Rob said

    Hey Daniel! I agree with you totally darlin! Today is a wonderful, beautiful, glorious day. The Dems taking back control of Congress is a day I’ve been waiting for with much anticipation. I, too, am moister than a Duncan Hines cake!! Love ya sweetness! Happy New Year — wishing you all the best. I know it will be a better year than 2006 simply because of the Dems being in control now. YAY!

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