Thursday, October 25, 2007


Censure for criticizing the king?

This hasn’t seemed to’ve gotten terribly much press: On Tuesday, Republicans in Congress tried — and failed, but not by very much — to pass a resolution to censure Representative Pete Stark, a Democrat from California, for giving some well-placed and much-deserved criticism to the Republicans and the president. From the New York Times article:

By 196 to 173, the House voted against adopting a resolution to censure Mr. Stark, who is chairman of the Ways and Means Subcommittee on Health, for what he said as the House sustained Mr. Bush’s veto of a bill to expand a children’s health insurance program.
And here’s what Representative Stark said to the Republicans, which prompted this attempt at censure:
You don’t have money to fund the war or children, but you’re going to spend it to blow up innocent people if we can get enough kids to grow old enough for you to send to Iraq to get their heads blown off for the president’s amusement.

Mr Stark said that last week, and after he was criticized for it he added this, reiterating the point:

I have nothing but respect for our brave men and women in uniform and wish them the very best. But I respect neither the commander in chief who keeps them in harm’s way nor the chickenhawks in Congress who vote to deny children health care.

It seriously bothers me that some of our legislators think that such statements deserve official censure, and that censure resolutions are what they should be spending their time on. Representative Stark may be accused of being somewhat impolitic, but you know what?: someone has to say this stuff, and my spouting it here isn’t enough. I’m damned glad to see a congressman say this sort of thing openly, and not back down from it.

Congress needs to stand up against this criminal administration, and the Republicans should be helping to override these insane vetos, instead of trying to censure those who point out the insanity.

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