With Bigger Numbers, Senate Dems Roll Coburn

Way back in July of last year, Senate Dems finally tired of Oklahoma Republican Senator Tom Coburn's use of "holds" to block legislation, so they bundled all the bills up into one package dubbed the "Tomnibus." With only a 1-seat Dem advantage at the time, the bill (which contains many land preservation measures) didn't pass.

But with a newly expanded majority, Dems wasted no time flexing some early muscle:

Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the majority leader, was sending a message with his decision to schedule the vote on Sunday. Democrats have been frustrated by Mr. Coburn's determination to hold up so many bills and the Sunday vote was intended to let Republicans know that Democrats are no longer going to go along easily.
A dozen Republicans did vote for the measure, which irritated Senator Jim DeMint, Republican of South Carolina, one of Mr. Coburn's chief allies.

"If my colleagues on my side continue to accept this, there's going to be no such thing as a Republican Party," he said.

It passed, 66-12.

While the Roland Burris fiasco has dominated early perception of the new Dem caucus, yesterday's work shouldn't be ignored. With Obama looking for as many votes as possible on the stimulus package, this early vote did more than warn Republicans of possible Sunday work - it provided a nice, concrete reminder of a new, expanded majority.

Tags: Harry Reid, Tom Coburn (all tags)



Harry Reid rocks

He didn't screw up this time. I don't get why he is so unpopular at home and despised by active Democrats nationwide.

by Bob Brigham 2009-01-12 12:38PM | 0 recs
Re: With Bigger Numbers, Senate Dems Roll Coburn

He's hated beacause he dones't act like an immature brat who just happens to have a seat of power. You know, he doesn't act like a confervative.

by spirowasright 2009-01-12 12:53PM | 0 recs
there are a lot of bad senators

but I don't think any state has as lousy representation in the upper chamber as Oklahoma. Coburn and Inhofe are pieces of work.

by desmoinesdem 2009-01-12 02:48PM | 0 recs
Re: there are a lot of bad senators

But, they're elected pieces of work.

by NvDem 2009-01-12 04:57PM | 0 recs
Re: With Bigger Numbers...

it provided a nice, concrete reminder of a new, expanded majority.

It also establishes a precedent for Republicans to break ranks without harsh recriminations.  Makes it harder for the leadership to keep their members in line when the harder votes come up.  

by NvDem 2009-01-12 05:02PM | 0 recs


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