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    December 29, 2007

    All for naught?

    Posted by: Chris

    Bush_nov_8_2006 President Bush vetoed the massive Defense Department funding bill over a relatively obscure provision he said he fears would exposre the new Iraqi government to Americans with billions in legal claims against the previous regime of Saddam Hussein. The decision came as a surprise to Republicans and Democrats alike,  and puts at jeopardy funding for the Iraq war and a pay hike for the armed forces. Democrats are, of course, trying to score political points on the decision, only solidifying the "pox on both your houses" that already registers as public disgust with both parties on both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue in public opinion polls.

    The Bush veto also puts a well-deserved exclamation point on the failed strategy of passing the Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Act, which would have added sexual orientation, gender identity, gender and disability to existing federal hate crime laws. Fearing a threatened veto of the Shepard Act as a freestanding measure, Senate Democrats attached it to the Defense Department bill. But when House Republicans threatened to bail on the bill, House Democrats couldn't muster enough votes, since some of their own wouldn't vote to spend additional sums on the war in Iraq.

    Now it appears that even if the Democrats could have managed to hold together, Bush would have vetoed the bill anyway, and might have even blamed the Shepard Act as well as the provision on legal claims against Iraq. Clearly, this massive bill was not the right vehicle to slip the hate crimes bill into law. The onus remains on Democrats to keep up the pressure and find another measure in January.



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    1. Monster Beats Sale on Nov 26, 2011 3:34:56 AM:

      The onus remains on Democrats to keep up the pressure and find another measure in January

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