- This is your new-style, reinvigorated, hard-charging,
tough-talking, speaking-truth-to-power, practicing-vigorous-oversight gaggle
of Senate Democrats in action one month after their historic triumph at
- Senate approves Gates as defense secretary
- By a vote of 95-2, the Senate approved President Bush's
defense secretary nominee Wednesday, a day after the nomination sailed
through the Armed Services Committee. Robert Gates was confirmed by the
Senate Armed Services Committee 24-0 on Tuesday. No significant opposition
to Gates' nomination surfaced during the confirmation process.
- I know, I know: the Democrats haven't yet taken the reins
of power in Congress. Obviously, the vote would have been much different
if they had waited until January. It would have been 96-1, because Rick
Santorum (one of the two Republican Rummy-worshippers who opposed Gates)
wouldn't be there.
- I'll be writing more about this soon.
But for now, I think we should let this vote (and the
- confirmation hearing love-in that preceded it, described
as "a day of compliments and warm chuckles" by the NYT)
on one of the most severely
compromised candidates ever nominated
for a major Cabinet
post serve as a sign of what's to come when the Democrats are once more
ensconced in the cozier Congressional offices: more rolling over and playing
dead, more simpering gratitude for noises of merely rhetorical "moderation"
from the Bush Gang, more relief that they won't actually have to do anything
to respond to the tide of anti-war, anti-corruption, anti-tyranny, anti-Bush
Faction sentiment that returned them to the majority.
- It's just a scientific fact: invertebrae cannot grow
spines by spontaneous generation. They were jellyfish before the elections,
they are jellyfish now, and they will be wriggling, wimpering jellyfish
in January -- and beyond, as they sit around with Gates and Bush "for
the next year or two" (in Gates' repeated formulation) and "consider
options" for "achieving success" in Iraq.
- As with so much else with the rubberstamp Republicans
and the rubberboned Democrats, the absurdity of the Gates hearing (and
the Baker Group brouhaha) would be funny -- if only so many, many people
were not going to die horrible, needless deaths because of it. The whole
rotten, stupid farce is like some demented production of "Gomer Pyle
Meets the Texas Chainsaw Massacre."