Monday, October 02, 2006

Good News, Bad News and Torture

Good news from Libby @ The Impolitic, who also blogs at the Detroit News, about a judge who's not afraid of the White House..
The White House's warrantless wiretaps may cease next week. U.S. District Judge Anna Diggs Taylor, laid down the law and said the administration has one week to get an appeal court ruling or they have to stop the program.
Now comes the bad news: Republican Torture Laws Will Live in History

Or try reading this "must read post" from Jessie Olson (ex-military): Why are YOU allowing our children to be TORTURED? YES, YOU!

And this one: This Is What Waterboarding Looks Like

Finally, here's a list of the traitorous Senators who voted yes on torture. Twelve of them are Democrats, including Debbie Stabenow of Michigan, who is up for reelection this year. Her vote was a huge disappointment to me, and I even considered not casting a vote for Senator come November, but then I read something Rep. John Conyers said:
As the minority party, we were always going to lose to the Bush Torture Bill. And there were always going to be those who vote with Republicans on this issue.

But keep one thing in mind. Although these votes have come to pass, don't forget that, in a Democratic majority, these issues would never have even come to a vote. [...]

If we can take back the majority, the Democratic leadership will never have a vote on approving torture, spying on our citizens, or suspending habeus corpus.

As you lament our present predicament, keep this in mind.
Good point. If we can take back the majority, we might also end the war in Iraq sooner and bring our soldiers home, or we might also reverse the damage the Republicans have done to our rights here at home. Without a Democratic majority, things will stay the same - and probably get worse because the Republicans still want to repeal the estate tax and privatize social security, and the Christian right still expects this administration to make all abortions illegal. With those unfulfilled Republican goals in mind, I decided I'll still vote for Debbie Stabenow based on her record.

From Christine Barry, here are some issues Stabenow opposed: The Federal Marriage Amendment, banning gay adoptions, ending affirmative action, publicly funding private schools, ANWR drilling, CAFTA, confirmation of Alito and Roberts, repealing the estate tax, and the war in Iraq.

And here are some issues Stabenow supported: The Kyoto protocols, funding public education, raising the minimum wage, and saving Social Security.

Stabenow also voted no on reauthorizing the Patroit Act, wrote the first federal ban on drilling for oil and gas in the Great Lakes, and she strongly supports reproductive freedom and efforts to promote family planning domestically and internationally.

So, as much as I detest torture, I also care about issues that have the potential to harm millions of senior citizens, gays, working Americans, and children - and also the environment. I don't know why torture wasn't equally important to Stabenow, but she has a strong record of concern and compassion on these other issues that the Republicans don't, and I have to look at the big picture. With that in mind, I will be voting to re-elect Stabenow in November.


Lew Scannon said...

Dammit! I was all set to fire off a missive to Stabenow until this. While I'm still severely disappointed she voted for this, perhaps I should remind myself of all the things that Bouchard would support. I think he's an idiot for running against the Republican majority (in his ads, he blames Washington for reckless spending. Who runs washington you moron?) but still having Bush and Cheney do fundraising for him.

Kvatch said...

Thanks for the mention Kathy. I can't fathom how we got here, but definitely understand your reasoning on the Democratic majority. I'm fortunate not to be faced with a difficult choice in Senate (or House for that matter) races.

Dar said...

I've been watching Stabenow for awhile...pretty sure she's got my vote also.
-Fellow Michigander

GraemeAnfinson said...

glad to say that red state ND's senators both voted no on that horrible bill

Kathy said...

Lew, you can still dash off that missive to Stabenow. She should hear how her constituents feel about this issue.

Kvatch, you're welcome - and thanks for making the list available.

Dar, thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment. It's always nice to hear from a fellow Michigander!

Graeme, I hadn't noticed that both of your senators voted no. Kudos to them.

Russel Trojan said...

"As the minority party, we were always going to lose to the Bush Torture Bill. And there were always going to be those who vote with Republicans on this issue."

I am at a loss to understand this logic. Because you're going to lose the vote anyway you vote with the perceived majority? Why? Is it somehow better to vote for the winner than to stand by principles?

Or, is this some sort of political back scratching? By voting this way does some different vote go another way?

It looks like either the absence of a backbone and integrity, or the manufacturing of an excuse.

It's unfortunate, that this type of "explanation" is persuasive.

Kathy said...

Russel, hello, and thanks for stopping by. The line you quoted didn't persuade me one way or the other either. It was this one:

If we can take back the majority, the Democratic leadership will never have a vote on approving torture, spying on our citizens, or suspending habeus corpus.

Peacechick Mary said...

Well done. Strong research and analysis. Your Stabenow is better than our Fl Nelson (D), so I can see how you can still vote for her. I'll have to vote for Nelson, but it will pain me to do so.

Anonymous said...

I won't. There are some lines I just won't cross. I'd rather vote for some loser like that guy on Davison's city council who loves Michael Moore and hates the Confederate flag than vote for somebody who condones torture.

Kathy said...

Peacechick Mary, thanks for stopping by. My decision wasn't easy and it will still pain me, but I view it as a way to hopefully prevent millions of other people from being hurt.

Anonymous, Michael Moore and the confederate flag in the same sentence? What a juxtaposition! ;-)