GOP blocks Sebelius vote

Aw, how cute! The Party of NO! wants to pretend it still has a modicum of leverage:

President Obama will have to wait a bit longer to round out his Cabinet. Senate Republicans refused today to allow a confirmation vote on his health secretary nominee Gov. Kathleen Sebelius (D-Kan.). She is the last Cabinet member awaiting Senate approval.

At the start of the session today, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) proposed taking a vote after five hours of debate. But Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) objected, arguing that lawmakers needed more time to consider her “fairly contentious” selection.

A handful of Republicans have complained about Sebelius’ support for abortion rights and her failure to report the full extent of campaign contributions she received from a physician who performs abortions.

This ultimately meaningless obstructionist tactic was initiated at the behest of religious right fetus fetishists, who’ve been trying in vain to get the Sebelius nomination scuttled. Although the GOP can be assholes and delay the final vote, that’s all they can do — put off the inevitable. Since the Sebelius confirmation is all but a done deal, the GOP’s delay tactics are silly, wrong and stupid political posturing, (not to mention a waste of taxpayers’ money — teabaggers, call your office!).

But this is actually great — it’s not like the confirmation is in any jeopardy, and it’s the GOP behaving exactly the way that got it where it is now, out of power. Objecting to someone like Sebelius, who’s such a moderate that she once chose a former Republican as a running mate, just cements the GOP’s reputation as a minority party in the pocket of the religious right. Nice work guys, keep it up!

10 Responses to “GOP blocks Sebelius vote”

  1. 1 Torontonian Thursday, April 23, 2009 at 2:34 pm

    Kathleen Sebelius was governor of Kansas when the hurricane
    season of 2005 which included Katrina caused serious damage
    to the state.

    Bush did not want to give Kansas any disaster relief money
    while other states received help.

    Why not Kansas, you ask? Because she was the only governor
    of an affected state who happened to be a DEMOCRAT!

    There was such a hue and cry that Bush relented and did
    –finally–release funds. But it took nearly shaming the
    executive branch and FEMA to release the funds.

    Now it comes back to hurt her just because she’s too
    progressive for the Republicans.

    Such hate and spite and bile. Only in America, you say.

  2. 2 Rev Dave Thursday, April 23, 2009 at 6:06 pm

    Ah yes, the time-honoured tradition of filibustering. What was it Mr. McConnell was saying about this a couple years ago, when the shoe was on the other foot?

    Ah yes, I remember now.

  3. 3 Frank Frink Thursday, April 23, 2009 at 6:22 pm

    Sorry to be pedantic, Torontonian, but not quite. Louisiana also had a Democratic Party governor at that time (Kathleen Blanco) but even the Bushies couldn’t very well refuse to give LA reconstruction funds.

  4. 4 JJ Thursday, April 23, 2009 at 6:39 pm


    Now it comes back to hurt her just because she’s too progressive for the Republicans.

    You’re right, she’s progressive, but even the GOP has no real objection to her, as they showed during her nomination hearings. The fundies were outraged by the GOP’s flaccid response during the hearings, but now it’s too late. The Dems have enough Senate votes to confirm Sebelius with or without the GOP.

    The GOP’s belated fauxtrage is in direct response to pestering by the fundies. They know, even if the fundies are too fucking stupid to know, that Sebelius’ confirmation is just a formality at this point.

  5. 5 JJ Thursday, April 23, 2009 at 6:51 pm

    Rev Dave – Ha! Right… “Up or down vote!”

    The problem the GOP faces now is that the house and senate are overwhelmingly owned by the Dems… Sebelius will be confirmed with or without the GOP’s help. Their objections are the inconsequential squealing of pigs just beginning to realize that they’ve been removed from the trough.

    Elections have consequences 8)

  6. 6 JJ Thursday, April 23, 2009 at 6:56 pm

    FF – Quite right, but it would have been impossible for the Bush admin to refuse funds to Louisiana, at the epicenter of all the damage.

    But their response to Katrina was (I love this word) flaccid to say the least, and no doubt it had something to do with the fact that a Dem was governor of the state (and the fact that they’re racist scum who apparently didn’t think the people of NOLA were worth rescuing).

  7. 7 J. A. Baker Friday, April 24, 2009 at 6:13 am

    Sadly, Sibelius is not the only one. Senator James “Global Warming Is The Greatest Hoax Perpretrated on Mankind EVAR No Backs Double Tax” Inhofe has started the Republicans’ War on Obama’s Judges early by announcing his intention to filibuster David Hamilton’s nomination to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. What did Judge Hamilton do to earn Inhofe’s wrath? Correctly interpret the Establishment Clause to mean that the Indiana state legislature couldn’t make the giving of the opening invocation a Christians-only club.

    OT: JJ, did you see my comment in the last teabagging post about my secessionist governor?

  8. 8 toujoursdan Friday, April 24, 2009 at 6:48 am

    I have to laugh at all this. Why would anyone vote for a party that can do nothing but say no?

    Do these people really want to stay out of office forever? How tone deaf can you get?

  9. 9 JJ Friday, April 24, 2009 at 7:01 am

    JAB – Do these people have no shame? After what he said about filibustering being “unconstitutional” and all that? What a fucking idiot.

    That’s all they can do at this point is obstruct progress.

    Hey — I missed your comment (sorry about that, I’ve been crazy busy and not even looking at the blog for days on end) — but I did read something about Perry wanting to secede somewhere else. I gather he changed his mind when he remembered all the federal funding he gets? Or did he? (Again, I’ve only been skimming over these stories lately.)

    My heart goes out to Texas progressives, seriously.

  10. 10 JJ Friday, April 24, 2009 at 7:08 am

    toujoursdan –

    Do these people really want to stay out of office forever? How tone deaf can you get?

    No kidding, eh? 😆

    I think they’re looking at the fact that the ONLY people who’d still vote for them are the religious right, so they still have to answer to their beck & call. Even though that’s one of the things that got them tossed out of office in the first place!

    These are desperate, ugly times in the GOP. It’s becoming a rump fringe party for nuts.

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