Sunday, September 19, 2010

In The Spotlight

You probably know by now that Lady Gaga is coming to Portland tomorrow to push Sens. Snowe and Collins not to block an up or down vote this week on the 2011 Defense Authorization bill, which includes a repeal of the military's 'Don't Ask Don't Tell' policy.

But you may not know that Collins voted for DADT repeal in committee, and she also backed the full bill.

So why, then, does Collins need to be cajoled? How on earth does she justify going mushy this late in the game?

Yup, she's going to hang her hat on "process":

"Senator Collins would like the Senate to proceed to a full and open debate on the defense Authorization bill, with members able to offer amendments on all relevant issues," said Kevin Kelley." She has spoken to Senator Reid and encouraged him to work with Republican leaders to negotiate such an agreement so that the bill could be brought to the floor."
Of course, it's routine for the number of amendments to be limited, the length of the debate to be limited, etc. And, for crying out loud, Collins has already voted in favor of the bill. So--outside of the fact that the junior senator is a Republican and the commander in chief happens to be a Democrat--where's the problem?

It's not remotely clear. In fact, you kinda sorta get the sense that, just maybe, Kevin Kelley is trying to create a smokescreen.

Anyway, it'll be interesting to see how the junior senator responds, if at all, to the very public pressure she'll be receiving over the next 24 hours.

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