All over the political radio talk shows today was Rep. Anthony Weiner (D- NY) ranting & raving in a very emotional House floor speech. For most of the afternoon I flipped between Sirius Left, Sirius Patriot (the right wing station), and POTUS (Politics of the United States) on my sattelite radio. All three were playing the audio clip of the video posted above. At first I was all pumped up, I loved it. Finally someone in politics getting REAL on an emotional topic (the argument was over a failed attempt to pass legislation that would provide healthcare & aid to 9-11 first responders who are now showing terrible health problems as a result of their work at ground zero). I was excited that a Democrat was FINALLY calling out all the greedy Republicans, how could anyone vote NO to help these heroes that have gone 9 long years with little or no medical help from the Government.
However, after listening to a Sean Hannity interview with both Weiner & Peter King (Republican who worked on the bill) I learned this story gets REALLY interesting, and shows how political & horrible BOTH parties can be. Let me explain:
For 5 years now Weiner & King have been working on a bipartisan effort to bring about legislation that would finally help those who are now suffering from 9-11 effects. Last night it was brought to a vote in the house. Now apparently there are two ways a bill can be passed (don’t ask me specifics) one way would require only 218 votes (Dems were able to drum up 255 votes). Another way, which would have been more bipartisan required 290 votes. This meant that King was supposed to garnder support from his fellow republicans to vote for the bill to make up the difference. Unfortunately King was only able to find 11 republican votes. Apparently last minute Weiner and the Dems decided to use the 290 vote method (they claim to make it more bipartisan; which makes sense, because had they pushed it through only on Dem support, Faux News would be all over them for “shoving things down our throat”). This was where Weiner’s rant came from last night when the Republicans voted down the aid.
However, on Hannity’s program, King blasted the Dems right back saying that had they actually cared about the people and really wanted to pass the bill, the Democrats could have passed it with the 255 votes they had (and only 11 republican votes). He claims that Weiner only chose to go the 290 vote to make the Republicans look bad. Which they do look bad.
SO did the Democrats go the 290 vote route to make the Republicans look bad? Or to make it a more bipartisan effort? Either way you shake it, only 11 Republicans in the House were ready to vote for legislation that would give aid to heroes. The use the same old disgusting excuses for saying no to the bill “It’s an entitlement program” “illegal aliens might get the aid money”. Makes me sick, but I can’t let the Democrats off easy either, they had a chance to really help people and they chose to be political instead.