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First things . . . &Tea Parties Richard Falknor on 16 Dec 2010 09:07 pm

Harry Reid’s Xmastime Menaces: No Rest for Conservatives

UPDATE DECEMBER 20 (SCROLL TO BOTTOM FOR EARLIER UPDATES) Dan Holler in Heritage Action for America declares – – “There is no rest for this lame duck Congress.  After working over the weekend to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and pass the ridiculous food safety bill, the Senate returns this morning to continue consideration of the New START Treaty. Over the weekend, two critical amendments failed.  One would have stripped language from the preamble that restricted our missile defense capability, the other would have included language on tactical nuclear weapons, which are absurdly absent from the treaty. The significance of the missile defense amendment – introduced by Senators John Barrasso (R-WY) and John McCain (R-AZ) – cannot be understated.(Underscoring Forum’s.) Read all of analyst Holler’s post: “The Obama administration is making one final push toward ratification of this dangerous treaty.  By doing so, they are ignoring the message sent by the American people on November 2nd.  Christmas is just five days away.  Take a minute to make a call – America’s national security depends on it.

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The Democrat leadership of the outgoing 111th Congress still presents serious threats to America between now and early next January when the new Congress convenes. This is true even though Senate Democrat leader Harry Reid “Cave[d] on the Omnibus” according to NRO’s Andrew Stiles and Robert Costa. 

As Stiles and Costa reported this evening – -

“Speaking now on the Senate floor, Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) says he is ‘sorry and disappointed’ to announce that he does not have the votes for the omnibus spending package. Instead, he will work with Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R., Ky.) to draft a temporary continuing resolution to fund the government into early next year.”

How serious was the hit we just avoided? Yesterday Heritage declared

“But as bad as the earmarks are the spending increases are even worse. The bill adds $5.4 billion in new labor, education, and health spending including money for the failed Head Start program, the failed Race to the Top program, Pell Grants, and $1.25 billion in spending on Obamacare. No conservative who promised to repeal Obamacare can possibly support this bill.(Underscoring Forum’s.)

The remaining perils range from the New Start Treaty to the Dream Act.

Conservatives need to keep paying attention and remain politically active during this holiday season.

What To Do Now?

  • Tea Party Patriots spells out a program for opposing the Dream Act.

According to NRO’s Stiles and Costa,

“Reid says he intends to hold cloture votes tonight on the DREAM Act and repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, with an aim toward holding up-or-down votes on Saturday.”

Update just after posting: Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell’s staff reports tonight that Reid “filed cloture on the motion to concur to the House-passed DREAM Act and the House-passed repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.’ The first cloture vote will occur sometime Saturday morning. The timing of the second vote will depend on what happens with the first. Tomorrow we will resume Executive Session and consideration of the new START Treaty.” (Underscoring Forum’s.)

Opposition to “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” Repeal

A December 2, 2010 letter to all senators from

“…some of the largest multi-racial, multi-ethnic, and multi-generational faith-based and policy organizations in the country, with approximately 40 million constituents combined . . . urge[d] you and other elected leaders to use your standing as members of the Senate to prevent the rush to repeal Section 654, Title 10, U.S.C. (1993), which is usually mislabeled by the subsequent Executive policy known as ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ (DADT) . . .contained in the Defense Authorization bill. We ask that you delay consideration of the bill until January when the new Congress convenes.” (Underscoring Forum’s.)

Stay Tuned!

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UPDATE DECEMBER 18: “Saturday in the Senate”: Dan Holler in Heritage Action for America reports – – “The Senate will begin the morning in executive session, continuing consideration of the New START Treaty.  For months, Heritage Action has been clamoring for a substantive debate and we’re finally seeing one.  Yesterday, Senators went back and forth for hours on a crucial amendment – whether to strip the restrictive missile defense language out of the treaty’s preamble.  Senate Republicans may have as many as 50 more amendments to offer to the fatally-flawed treaty.Efforts to make the treaty less harmful will be postponed sometime this morning though, as Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) will force votes on two controversial measures – the DREAM Act and a repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.'” John Fund revealed in the December 17 Political Diary (subscription required –excerpt from his “Death of a Spending Bill” follows)- – “Hundreds of carefully crafted special-interest projects benefitting members of both parties evaporated with Mr. Reid’s decision. But in the end he realized that a prolonged omnibus bill debate would cost him the chance to bring to the floor a measure to repeal the military’s ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ policy. Senator John McCain, a defender of DADT, has told colleagues he has never seen Senator Reid so determined to ram through a measure. A former Democratic Senator told me that Mr. Reid had promised key gay donors to the Democratic Party that the policy barring gays from openly serving in the military would be overturned before the new GOP Congress was sworn in.(Underscoring Forum’s throughout.)

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