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View Diary: Obama isn't to blame for Republican vows to block any and all gun reforms (139 comments)

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  •  The real problem... (28+ / 0-)
    Why is it on the president to somehow twist Republican arms to support something that between 80 and 90 percent of the public supports? Why is the story not about how a hard-right Republican caucus vows to reject even the things that 80 to 90 percent of the public wants?
    If 90% of people truly want something list background checks or the end of the sequester they're going to have to stop voting for Republicans. The group-think of the Republicans doesn't give the possibility of reasonable actions on many issues. So if you expect reasonable and vote Republican you really don't want reasonable you want "FUCK NO!" as the only option.

    You can't assassinate the character of any of modern conservative. You'd have to find where it was buried, dig it up, resurrect it, then kill it. And killing a zombie isn't really assassination, is it?

    by ontheleftcoast on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 11:47:03 AM PDT

    •  Yes, the main problem is people voting for Repubs. (23+ / 0-)

      But it'll take a while to fix that one.
         The (much) quicker fix is meaningful filibuster reform because 54 votes, 55 counting Reid ought to carry the day on such an important piece of legislation.
         If Democrats want to pass a bill, change the filibuster rule and then re-work the legislation.

         And the same concept works for so many other things such as raising the minimum wage, passing a good, solid jobs bill, and getting Mr. Cordray approved to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

      "We the People of the United States...." -U.S. Constitution

      by elwior on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 12:40:35 PM PDT

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      •  You're right. That needs to be done. (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Philby, skohayes, SoCalSal, DSPS owl, imchange

        But then what about the House? The most insane thing I heard after the gun votes was someone giving the excuse that it didn't matter that they didn't pass in the Senate because they would never pass in the House. Put that with Boehner saying the House wouldn't pass anything because it will die in the Senate. It seems paralysis is what's in store for a really long time.

        •  No reason to let the Senate off the hook, just ... (9+ / 0-)

          ... because someone thinks the House won't act. Representatives are up for reelection every two years. The House has a lot of Democrats who will vote for good bills brought to the floor. And there are Republican Congressmen who cannot hold out against back home pressure to deal with gun violence.

          House leadership is scared stiffless that the issue will come to them. They can rest easier so long as the Senate refuses these bills. But if when that filibustered logjam breaks - and it surely will - a number of House Republicans will already be near the edge of caving. The pressure will be on Boehner to refuse to bring the bill up. Let's see him hold out against the storm of public pressure then.

          We fight paralysis as it comes. One polarizing paralysis at a time.

          2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

          by TRPChicago on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 02:39:55 PM PDT

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      •  necessary, but insufficient (1+ / 0-)
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        I've come to the conclusion that Reid did not push harder for reform for a very simple reason: it would have meant nothing, since whatever passed the Senate would probably be doomed in the House - at least as it currently stands.

        Had he gone full-measure on filibuster reform, the House would have still blocked everything, and then that tool would have been lost to the Ds should the Senate swing away from them in '14.  Given the oddities and vicissitudes of the electorate, that is not entirely out of the question.

        The only way it works is if the House comes back to Ds AND filibuster reform (actual) is then implemented.

    •  Radicalized GOP killed expanded background checks (17+ / 0-)

      Greg Sargent....

      4/23/13....Steve Benen reminds us that the death of Toomey-Manchin is also another reminder of just how radical today’s GOP is in historical terms:

      There’s an ongoing reluctance among many to appreciate the scope of Republican radicalization. For many, especially in media, there’s an assumption that there are two major, mainstream political parties — one center-left, the other center-right — and an effective president can govern through competent bipartisan outreach.

      Those assumptions are wrong. As we discussed in January, outreach doesn’t work because Republicans have reached an ideological extreme unseen in modern American history. It’s a quantifiable observation, not a subjective one. Even if GOP policymakers were inclined to work with Obama, they realize that they’d be punished soon after by a primary challenge — and they know this to be true because it’s happened more than a few times in recent years (look up names like Crist, Specter, Bennett, Lugar, etc.).

      "Tax cuts for the 1% create jobs." -- Republicans, HAHAHA - in China

      by MartyM on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 01:27:46 PM PDT

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    •  Filibuster, like Cramdown=Obama Failure (0+ / 0-)

      Kept his powder dry during filibuster battle, just like the Cramdown he said he wanted way back when...

      •  Kept his powder dry? (5+ / 0-)

        While he was out on the stump, talking to the public and telling them to call their Senators, or when he was having dinner at the White House with Republicans and meeting with Senators like Heitkamp?

        “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

        by skohayes on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 03:08:46 PM PDT

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        •  It All Comes Back to the Filibuster (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          No Exit

          Jon Walker:

          This amendment, like so much of Obama’s agenda, failed in the Senate because of the filibuster. Amazingly, the word “filibuster” never appears once in their article.

          Obama has had numerous opportunities to aggressively push for reforming the Senate rule but he didn’t.

          While trying to find leverage to twist 60 Democratic and Republican arms for every single action in the Senate is not feasible, Obama could have tried to put everything he had into getting only 50 Democrats beyond Senate rules reform. It would have been tough, but given the implications of this one change it would have been worth using tactics that can’t be justified for a single bill or amendment.

          When Obama didn’t go all in on Senate rules reform at the beginning of this year he effectively chose to give Senate Republicans an unjustifiable veto. Any gun control bill was already doomed the moment that happened.

          It is both irresponsible and damaging to our society for reporters to keep pretending as if the problem for every bill is Obama not sharing enough beers or impersonating LBJ. The single issue in the Senate is Democrats refusing to use their power to pass things with a simple majority.

          Sometimes it's good to hear from outside the bubble....
        •  Kabuki Democrats (0+ / 0-)

          Control the Narrative, not the facts

          The simple fact is even if every Senate Democrat voted for the amendment it would not have received 60 votes. The four reluctant Democrats didn’t prevent the amendment from winning approval in the Senate.

          The senators that should truly be blame are the 51 Democrats who voted for the amendment but still haven’t voted to eliminate the filibuster. If the 51 Democrats who voted for the amendment really wanted to see it passed in the Senate, they could have passed it. They could have voted to eliminate the filibuster and than pass the bill with a simple majority vote like the Constitution specifies.

          Senate Democrats have created many excuses for not reforming the filibuster but the biggest reason is the idea of plausible deniability. It allows them to pretend to support things that they know will fail to get 60 votes and the ability to blame Republicans. They can get credit for voting for things while also exploiting the threat of a filibuster only to let it fail without their finger prints on it.

          Thass the problem.  All this fluff that ignores that just goes round in circles...
          •  And that's the stupidest thing (0+ / 0-)

            I've ever read.

            “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

            by skohayes on Wed Apr 24, 2013 at 01:09:24 PM PDT

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            •  The Exception to 60 votes (0+ / 0-)

              Will be when Obama's fighting D's need to pass his austerity agenda (Medicare, Social Security, and Medicaid cuts.). Those will no doubt pass with reconciliation simple majority plus one.  Change we can believe in!

              •  They are budget bills (0+ / 0-)

                They don't need the 60 vote threshold. It's been that way for a couple of decades now.

                “We are not a nation that says ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’ We are a nation that says ‘out of many, we are one.’” -Barack Obama

                by skohayes on Thu Apr 25, 2013 at 03:37:00 AM PDT

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    •  Most people don't care that much about guns (3+ / 0-)

      RTKBA advocates are single-issue voters.  They will not vote for a candidate who supports reasonable gun control legislation, even if they're otherwise socially liberal or economically populist.  So, there are a lot of possible D votes that elected representatives like Begich or Pryor have to worry about losing.

      The problem is that gun control has wide, but soft, support.  Most voters don't really care all that much as long as they haven't personally been touched by gun violence.  The issue doesn't animate voters on both sides equally, unlike other contentious issues like abortion.

      Republicans just aren't going to lose a lot of votes by blocking gun control, because the people who would rain hellfire upon them if they'd supported the recent measures far outnumber gun control supporters who would otherwise have voted for them.

      •  The James Yeager camp. v everybody else camp (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Newtown wasn't enough. But the next one is being planned as we speak. In a basement someone is collecting AR's to outscore Lanza because we insist on treating guns like video games. So James Yeager can have his little Barbie Gun hobby.

        guns are fun v. hey buddy, watch what you are doing -- which side are you on?

        by 88kathy on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 03:32:11 PM PDT

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      •  Who do these guys really REPRESENT? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        Voters Do care about how their Senators actually REPRESENT their constituents, which has nothing to do with gun control.

        If it's spelled out for voters in simple 30 second spots, the hot button betrayals where republicans have failed to REPRESENT a simple majority of their district's population, and paint the GOP successfully as a party of voter betrayal, we can accelerate the stampede of independents and disenchanted or open minded republicans.

        The fact is, too many politicians in the republican party have failed to represent the people of their states and districts, on any number of issues, preferring to follow the siren call of the lobbyists and their sponsors. These GOP party hacks have betrayed the public trust, and the very essence of REPRESENTATIVE democracy.

        The issue here is a simple question: "Who do these guys really REPRESENT?"

        "Gun violence places a tremendous burden on America's health care system. Direct medical costs for gunshot wounds total more than six million dollars a day." - The Violence Policy Center

        by Beastly Fool on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 04:05:56 PM PDT

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    •  The problem is too many people vote GOP. Okay. (6+ / 0-)

      And screwing up at filibuster reform was a huge factor too.  But still, there is a question of how you move people AWAY from voting Republican, and it's not by dumping on the President and Harry Reid.  As has been noted before, Democrats are not always good at messaging.  Even, or maybe especially, progressives.

      I realize that DKos is essentially a place for Democrats to talk to each other, so critiquing the party and the president is one of our key roles.

      But we need to be better at talking to the rest of the country, too.  We need to develop a commitment to a dual role.  Criticize the President and elected Dems on gun regulation all you want.  But also, join Gabby Giffords' new group, Americans for Responsible Solutions, or at least send some money, so they can run ads against Republcans who voted against gun regulation, starting in May.  There need to be people putting out clear, direct, simple messages, such as:


      It needs to be said 100,000 times between now and the 2014 election, and we, the netroots, need to help that happen -- through blogs, issue groups, radio, and any other way we can -- whether we're really happy about Obama's performance, or Harry Reid's performance, or not.


      Things like that.  

      Hunter, thanks for pointing out the craven refusal of the mainstream media to acknowledge that one of our major parties now ranges from extreme to stark staring crazy.  If you have any suggestions on how we can prod them toward admitting the GOP has no clothes, or bypass them to make the public more aware of this dynamic, please don't hold out on us.

      --------------------- “These are troubling times. Corporation are treated like people. People are treated like things. …And if we ever needed to vote, we sure do need to vote now.” -- Rev. Dr. William J. Barber

      by Fiona West on Tue Apr 23, 2013 at 03:48:38 PM PDT

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      •  This is the tact I try to take. (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I know that my GOP friends and family will never vote for baby killing godless Democrats who just want to tax and regulate and... Fuck I can't even keep up anymore.  So I tell them "Vote Republican.  But not THESE ones." and I tend to have a great deal more success.  

        They need a similar movement to the one we had last decade, i.e better candidates, not just more of them.  The GOP incumbents need to lose their primary immunity.  And the Dems who think like Reid, maybe even more so.

        That's a conversation you can actually HAVE with a conservative.

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