Yes, I am spoiling everyone’s breakfast by yammering on about this disgraceful failed vote over a UN-supportive nothingburger treaty, which calls for people with disabilities to be treated with a degree of respect that was written into American law more than twenty years ago, by that treacherous RINO George H.W. Bush. No, I don’t believe that signing it would have immediately improved the global standards of care for persons with life-altering medical conditions. But the GOP rejected the resolution — in a chaff-cloud of paranoid rumors about UN black helicopters stealing home-schooled children away from their loving parents and forcing doctors to condemn ‘imperfect’ babies to death — because the convention is about the “Rights of Persons with Disabilities”, foremost among them the right to the greatest possible level of autonomy. The Republican Dung Beetles believe that “rights” are for white men with money, and that any attempt by the rest of us to assert our autonomy is a plot to steal control from those whom God and the Second Amendment intended to be in charge.
Lawrence Downes, in the NYTImes, on “A Parting Slap Against Bob Dole & Disabled Americans“:
Former Senator Bob Dole, 89 years old and in a wheelchair, went onto to the floor of the Senate today to urge his former colleagues to ratify the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons With Disabilities. Mr. Dole, a disabled veteran, has been one of the leading voices urging ratification of the treaty, which seeks to bring the world closer to the high standard set by the Americans with Disabilities Act, the landmark civil-rights law enacted under President George H.W. Bush.
One by one, according to Roll Call, the senators approached Mr. Dole to pat his shoulder or clasp his hand, making gestures of respect for the man who was for many years the Republican majority leader.
Then he was wheeled away, and all but a handful of the Republicans bailed out on him. The treaty failed. It needed a two-thirds vote to pass, or 67 votes, and fell six short…
In other words, these cowards didn’t have the guts to disagree with a crippled octegenarian to his face.
Only eight Republicans voted yes: Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, John Barrasso of Wyoming, Scott Brown of Massachusetts, Susan Collins and Olympia Snowe of Maine, Richard Lugar of Indiana, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and John McCain of Arizona.
Several Republicans who might have made a difference but voted “no,” as Roll Call pointed out, are up for re-election in 2014 and are facing possible primary challenges from the right: Saxby Chambliss of Georgia, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, and Thad Cochran of Mississippi, who changed his “yes” to a “no” after it was obvious the treaty would fail…
So Sen. Cochran knew what the honorable vote would be, but if he couldn’t score a ‘win’, he didn’t have the courage to stand apart from the cockroaches scuttling for cover.
.. Senator John Kerry, the Massachusetts Democrat and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said in a statement after the vote: “This is one of the saddest days I’ve seen in almost 28 years in the Senate, and it needs to be a wake-up call about a broken institution that’s letting down the American people.”
He added: “Today the dysfunction hurt veterans and the disabled, and that’s unacceptable. This treaty was supported by every veterans group in America and Bob Dole made an inspiring and courageous personal journey back to the Senate to fight for it. It had bipartisan support, and it had the facts on its side, and yet for one ugly vote, none of that seemed to matter. We won’t give up on this and the Disabilities Treaty will pass because it’s the right thing to do, but today I understand better than ever before why Americans have such disdain for Congress and just how much must happen to fix the Senate so we can act on the real interests of our country.”
Quoted for truth, Senator Kerry. Also too:
… Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader, said the measure would return to the Senate floor in the 113th Congress.
“It is a sad day when we cannot pass a treaty that simply brings the world up to the American standard for protecting people with disabilities because the Republican Party is in thrall to extremists and ideologues,” he said in a statement.
Decent Democrats during the later two-thirds of the twentieth century were forever being embarrassed by the Boll Weevil Democrats. Those pests have been replaced by Dung Beetle Republicans. Some of them are crazy, and some of them are trying to use that crazy for their own malign ends, and every single one of them is a public disgrace.