I’m a fervent conservative and a life-long Republican. But if I lived in Kentucky, I’d probably work for the defeat of Mitch McConnell in his Senate re-election campaign, even against the Democrat. That’s how disgusted I am with how he and the other Senate Republican leaders are acting.
Look at this debt ceiling vote on Wednesday. Mitch McConnell and 11 other Republicans were looking for cover. They wanted to approve giving Obama a blank check debt ceiling increase – no conditions, and no dollar limit – but they wanted to try to deceive their constituents into thinking they were against it. So, in collaboration with Harry Reid, they had arranged to have the bill subject to a simple majority vote. That way it could pass without any of the 45 Republicans having to vote for it.
Senator Ted Cruz, however, would have none of these games. He wanted the people to be able to better see who was actually for this move and who was against it. So he objected to the procedure, forcing a cloture vote.
So Mitch McConnell and his whip, John Cornyn, tried to do what he always tries to do with these liberal measures – recruit votes from establishment Republicans while they themselves would vote against it, so their fingerprints wouldn’t be on it. However, this time his members would have none of this tactic. As reported by Politico, “Miffed that they have long been asked to take tough votes when the GOP leaders voted “no,” Sens. Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski, privately pressured McConnell and Cornyn to vote to break the filibuster, sources said. Murkowski resisted voting for the measure without the support of her leadership team.” Plus, these Republicans wanted more cover than just the bare minimum of Senators required to move the measure forward, so they ended up having to recruit ten senators, plus McConnell and Cornyn.
So now McConnell’s tactic, that we knew he was doing behind the scenes, is finally exposed to the open air. He works behind the scenes to advance a liberal agenda, but he doesn’t want his fingerprints on it, so when the public vote is taken, he votes against what he has been working for. This helps him maintain the façade of being a conservative.
Then, when the vote came up for the actual debt ceiling increase, all twelve of these Republicans switched and voted against it, thinking that we wouldn’t notice that earlier, on the procedural matter, they voted to move the proposal forward.
Is this deceitful? Of course it is. And I am embarrassed to have to say that my neighbor and fellow Latter-day Saint, Senator Jeff Flake, joined in this deception as he was one of the twelve Republicans to move this forward. Senator Flake is a member of my stake, and he enjoys strong support from fellow Latter-day Saints. But not from me. In our Doctrine and Covenants, the Lord gives us guidelines for voting: “Wherefore, honest men and wise men should be sought for diligently . . .” (D&C 98:10). The Lord doesn’t tell us to seek out “LDS men,” but “honest men.” Neither Senator Flake nor any of these other 11 Republicans are honest. On this and other votes, they are repeatedly trying to fool their constituents.
What we actually have in the country is an alliance of Democrats and a handful of Congressional Republicans who happen to be in leadership roles pushing a liberal agenda. But the Republicans try, as artfully as they can, to camouflage their positions so they can claim to be conservatives. This is clearly illustrated in this raising of the debt ceiling. We had all the Democrats in the House, plus 28 Republicans (which included Speaker John Boehner and his selected leaders) voting for this. Then, in the Senate, we had all the Senate Democrats plus these 12 Republicans recruited by the leadership, voting for this, while the people are against it.
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