Senator tries to add abortion amendment to flood bill

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http://thehill.com/blogs/floor-action/senate/234747-reid-rejects-pauls-life-at-conception-amendment-to-flood-bill


An exasperated Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said that he would not allow a vote on an amendment clarifying that life begins at conception, which Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) offered to a flood insurance bill.

Paul has been known to offer unrelated amendments to Senate bills throughout the 112th Congress, often frustrating Reid. On Tuesday morning, Reid indicated he has had enough, and said Republicans need to control Paul or run the risk that the flood bill might not go through as planned.

"I'm told last night that one of our Republican senators wants to offer an amendment - listen to this one - wants to offer an amendment on when life begins," Reid said. "There will not be a vote on that on flood insurance. We'll either do flood insurance with amendments that deal with flood insurance, or we won't do it, we'll have an extension.

"I don't understand what this is all about," Reid added. "But I want everyone to know: This flood insurance is extremely important. The big pushers of this bill are Republicans senators, veteran Republican senators.

"They better work on their side of the aisle, because I am not going to put up with that," he concluded. "If the Republicans won't stand up to that, to the person who's going to that, I'm not going to."

The Senate is working on a bill, S. 1940, that would reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) for five years, and reform it to allow the nation's only flood insurer to increase premiums so the program can work its way out of a nearly $18 billion deficit. The program expires at the end of July.

Senators are working on an agreement on which amendments to the bill might come up. Paul's amendment, introduced on Monday, is called the Life at Conception Act, and would "ensure equal protection for right to life of each born and preborn human person."

Paul's language also states that "Congress hereby declares that the right to life guaranteed by the Constitution is vested in each human being."

Really? How did a bill about flood insurance become about abortions? How? The only scenario I can think of is this:

Senator: "oh yes floods, like the flood of abortions across the nation! We must stop this at once!"

Captcha: know your rights

Hey, remember that bit in the Simpsons, where the bill to save Springfield from be destroyed didn't go through because someone stuck a porn amndment to it?

If so, is that scene more funny, or less funny?

This is common practice (see also: NDAA!), and it's about time someone said, "Hey, wait a minute, you can't fucking do that!"

It is an all too common event in US politics, attaching amendments onto bills that are set to pass by a large majority that by themselves would be shot down. Both sides have done it, but once again it seems the Republicans are by far the worst offenders.

Republicans often use it for political grandstanding. They attach an amendment, such as the one above, to a popular bill using their majority, knowing that no Democrat would ever vote for it. They can then turn around and say 'look at all these Democrats voting against this popular bill.

This is actually part of the reason the Republicans have given for the filibusters. The Democrats are sick and tired of this sort of shit so they have been trying to rush things through without letting Republicans argue for bullshit amendments that have nothing to do with the actual bill. The Republicans say they are just trying to have their say.

All it shows is that the US seriously needs legislative reform. You would think that when this first came up they would have sat down and thought 'you know what, this is a bit stupid, we really should make it so amendments are actually related to the bill' but that would have taken to much effort.

Business as usual. Tacking on amendments to bills that would otherwise be sure-fire winners for political purposes is something that has been going on for quite a while.

Ultratwinkie:
Really? How did a bill about flood insurance become about abortions? How? The only scenario I can think of is this:

Senator: "oh yes floods, like the flood of abortions across the nation! We must stop this at once!"

Since when would there need to be any logical connection to try and sneak something in like that? Can't they basically tack on whatever they want? Presumably, he wants anti-abortion measures instated anyway and would try it on anything regardless of the bill in question.

There was something I saw/read years ago (can't remember its name) that joked that most of the crazy stuff put through congress was snuck into a crappy bill that nobody actually read fully and so never noticed the crazy.

Almost sounds like reality is copying fiction.

I don't envy Reid for having to deal with deranged people like that.

The fuck is wrong with those people?

Hey Blah, correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't it illegal for Dutch parliament to pull crap like that? Maybe an idea for a future bill in the States... just make sure nobody tries to legalize bestiality or something with it like a sneaky git.

I have only one thing to say about this: UUUUUUUUGGGGGHHHHHHHHH -_-

scotth266:
Business as usual. Tacking on amendments to bills that would otherwise be sure-fire winners for political purposes is something that has been going on for quite a while.

The comments on that news story worry me

Dryk:
I have only one thing to say about this: UUUUUUUUGGGGGHHHHHHHHH -_-

scotth266:
Business as usual. Tacking on amendments to bills that would otherwise be sure-fire winners for political purposes is something that has been going on for quite a while.

The comments on that news story worry me

Those comments are mild. Just kids repeating pro-gun dogma because it's pithy and feels fun. A bit like reciting a prayer in the face of something feared.

You should read the FOX News comments some time. You'll get the same amount of pro-gun rhetoric, but mixed in with a lot of overt racism. And at least comment calling for more unarmed blacks to be shot.

Ultratwinkie:

Senator: "oh yes floods, like the flood of abortions across the nation! We must stop this at once!"

Does any country but the US allow unrelated amendments to be tacked on to legislation? It's bizarre and unrelated stuff should always be ruled out of order.

Wolverine18:
Does any country but the US allow unrelated amendments to be tacked on to legislation? It's bizarre and unrelated stuff should always be ruled out of order.

NO YOU'RE OUT OF ORDER!

Wait, what were we talking about? As others have stated, this isn't that uncommon. It's crazy how much power a single Senator has to muck up the whole process. It'd be one thing if half of the Republican Senators did this, it's quite another to have a rogue Senator screwing up everyone's day.

I can't stay mad at Rand Paul though, he's adorable.

thaluikhain:
Hey, remember that bit in the Simpsons, where the bill to save Springfield from be destroyed didn't go through because someone stuck a porn amndment to it?

If so, is that scene more funny, or less funny?

It's funny, because it's:

1. Fictional
2. From what I know anyway, wouldn't hinder anybody's rights
and 3. Fictional

I'm glad Reid put them in their place. Good Lord, Republicans. Even if this had somehow passed there's no way it would have not made it to the Supreme Court. And if they couldn't win Roe v. Wade in the 70s, what on earth makes them think they could win a fight like that today?

I think they just realize it's a losing battle, so they're trying everything to get it passed without open debate. Because in open debate against people who don't support it, it just doesn't stand up.

Also, I'd like to note the irony of their concern for the "unborn." So they want every baby conceived to be born. But, if that baby is born to a family that needs government assistance, suddenly they are a moocher and the scum of the earth, and the woman is chastised for having a baby she couldn't support. They want all these babies, but they don't want to help people who have them and aren't financially prepared. If you're unborn, you're set, they'll fight to the death for your welfare. But as soon as you're born, they never want to hear from you again until you're old enough to pay taxes.

Dags90:

Wolverine18:
Does any country but the US allow unrelated amendments to be tacked on to legislation? It's bizarre and unrelated stuff should always be ruled out of order.

NO YOU'RE OUT OF ORDER!

Wait, what were we talking about? As others have stated, this isn't that uncommon. It's crazy how much power a single Senator has to muck up the whole process. It'd be one thing if half of the Republican Senators did this, it's quite another to have a rogue Senator screwing up everyone's day.

I can't stay mad at Rand Paul though, he's adorable.

I know its common in the US. I just was reflecting on the fact that it was stupid the US allowed it and I was wondering aloud if any other countries were so stupid. If you look to the basic rules of order used in most of the corporate world, such motions would likely barely be out of the person's mouth before they were ruled out of order, and they certainly would have no chance to motivate for the motion.

Dags90:
It'd be one thing if half of the Republican Senators did this, it's quite another to have a rogue Senator screwing up everyone's day.

Which does happen from time to time if there is something really "critical" as a way to stale. The minority party will band together and flood a bill with proposed amendments. Doesn't work as well in the Senate, though, as the Senate Leader has more power over the Senate than the Speaker of the House does over the House and can basically tell them to STFU and push through whatever objections they have.

Edit: Wait, nm, it's the other way around. Senate has more rigid rules, the House doesn't, thus the Speaker has more flexibility.

Skeleon:

Ultratwinkie:
Really? How did a bill about flood insurance become about abortions? How? The only scenario I can think of is this:

Senator: "oh yes floods, like the flood of abortions across the nation! We must stop this at once!"

Since when would there need to be any logical connection to try and sneak something in like that? Can't they basically tack on whatever they want? Presumably, he wants anti-abortion measures instated anyway and would try it on anything regardless of the bill in question.

Ah, but you're both missing the real connection. You see, abortion makes God angry, and God responds to things that make him angry with floods. So this is really just a way to lower the cost of our flood insurance program by making there be less flooding. Rand Paul is just trying to reduce the deficit!

Wolverine18:

Dags90:

Wolverine18:
Does any country but the US allow unrelated amendments to be tacked on to legislation? It's bizarre and unrelated stuff should always be ruled out of order.

NO YOU'RE OUT OF ORDER!

Wait, what were we talking about? As others have stated, this isn't that uncommon. It's crazy how much power a single Senator has to muck up the whole process. It'd be one thing if half of the Republican Senators did this, it's quite another to have a rogue Senator screwing up everyone's day.

I can't stay mad at Rand Paul though, he's adorable.

I know its common in the US. I just was reflecting on the fact that it was stupid the US allowed it and I was wondering aloud if any other countries were so stupid. If you look to the basic rules of order used in most of the corporate world, such motions would likely barely be out of the person's mouth before they were ruled out of order, and they certainly would have no chance to motivate for the motion.

To answer your question, I'm pretty sure the New Zealand government tried something extremely similar, but not quite the same.

http://www.neowin.net/news/new-zealand-government-attempts-to-sneak-in-anti-piracy-law
http://modsreloaded.com/new-zealand-government-anti-piracy-law-t3553.html

Forgive the sources, I'm not sure how reliable they are.

What is essentially claimed, is that when the country was panicking and allowed a few laws to be pushed through immediately to help the rebuilding/aid of the country, someone snuck in an anti-piracy law, allowing it to go through without the public voting on it or some shit.

I could be completely wrong, I'm extremely sick right now and I don't know if it's 100% accurate, I just remembered hearing something like this.

Seanchaidh:
Ah, but you're both missing the real connection. You see, abortion makes God angry, and God responds to things that make him angry with floods. So this is really just a way to lower the cost of our flood insurance program by making there be less flooding. Rand Paul is just trying to reduce the deficit!

Oooh, I must've missed the fact that it was Rand Paul doing this when I skimmed the article, thanks for pointing that out. So much for small government and Libertarian ideals, eh? Daddy must be so proud of his son. And I mean that literally, considering we know that Ron Paul isn't too big on private and social freedoms, either. Isn't Rand Paul the guy who said that he thinks civil liberties shouldn't be federally mandated and that he simply wouldn't go eat at a, say, racist segregationist restaurant?

Skeleon:

Seanchaidh:
Ah, but you're both missing the real connection. You see, abortion makes God angry, and God responds to things that make him angry with floods. So this is really just a way to lower the cost of our flood insurance program by making there be less flooding. Rand Paul is just trying to reduce the deficit!

Oooh, I must've missed the fact that it was Rand Paul doing this when I skimmed the article, thanks for pointing that out. So much for small government and Libertarian ideals, eh? Daddy must be so proud of his son. And I mean that literally, considering we know that Ron Paul isn't too big on private and social freedoms, either.

Eh... he thinks that unborn children are persons deserving of rights. His mistake isn't really an inconsistency with Libertarian ideals, but in treating the idea of 'person' in such a shallow way. Given such an idea of what 'person' means, it's only natural that even a Libertarian would see a reason to increase the prerogative of the Federal government in that respect.

Isn't Rand Paul the guy who said that he thinks civil liberties shouldn't be federally mandated and that he simply wouldn't go eat at a, say, racist segregationist restaurant?

Yeah, that sounds like Rand Paul.

Seanchaidh:
Eh... he thinks that unborn children are persons deserving of rights. His mistake isn't really an inconsistency with Libertarian ideals, but in treating the idea of 'person' in such a shallow way. Given such an idea of what 'person' means, it's only natural that even a Libertarian would see a reason to increase the prerogative of the Federal government in that respect.

Hm, right. Maybe I was too simplistic in my view of Libertarian ideals. After all, I had figured they were supposed to be about private decisions, private freedoms, self-determination etc. in addition to all the economic stuff; and so the self-determination of the mother would be highly important. But I guess when you start out from that point of view and apply the issue of self-determination, then the self-determination of the developing fetus matters very much, too. Enough to override the mother's? Apparently so, for him at least.

Skeleon:
Isn't Rand Paul the guy who said that he thinks civil liberties shouldn't be federally mandated and that he simply wouldn't go eat at a, say, racist segregationist restaurant?

I think that quote is specific to his father, but Rand Paul also thinks that private business should be able to say "No Negros".

What is this I don't even...

You sure it was an actual attempt to get the abortion thing through, or was it more just tossing a spanner into the works with a ridiculously unrelated amendment in order to grind the process to a halt?

Like father like son... crazy runs in the family.

I am really begining to think these nutcase republican politicians really just want more people they can treat like dirt and dehumanize after they are born. because they certainly try to do that already. say no to contraception, say no to proper sex education, say no to abortion, more lower class and minority babies to treat like shit later!

earmarks should be ilegal and all amendments to bills should be relevant to the bill itself to even be considered as an amendment and if one slips through and is found later then it should void the whole bill. otherwise they should be a standalone bill.

Dags90:
I think that quote is specific to his father, but Rand Paul also thinks that private business should be able to say "No Negros".

I googled and found what I meant. Apparently it was a Rachel Maddow interview where Rand Paul said that. He later backpaddled a bit, though. In the video he makes it very clear he favours governmental racism be stopped by force of law, but sees private clubs, restaurants and businesses as being limited in their free speech by such laws. He would not go to such a restaurant and says he thinks it would be a bad business model, but he thinks it should be up to them.

Interesting video, all in all, but the relevant bit for this is from around 8:00 onwards.

http://crooksandliars.com/nicole-belle/rachel-maddow-corners-rand-paul-his-e

Ultratwinkie:
snip

How is that legal that a random topic can be added to a bill? How is that even allowed that a bill on flood insurance can include some random section on abortion.

Skeleon:

Seanchaidh:
Eh... he thinks that unborn children are persons deserving of rights. His mistake isn't really an inconsistency with Libertarian ideals, but in treating the idea of 'person' in such a shallow way. Given such an idea of what 'person' means, it's only natural that even a Libertarian would see a reason to increase the prerogative of the Federal government in that respect.

Hm, right. Maybe I was too simplistic in my view of Libertarian ideals. After all, I had figured they were supposed to be about private decisions, private freedoms, self-determination etc. in addition to all the economic stuff; and so the self-determination of the mother would be highly important. But I guess when you start out from that point of view and apply the issue of self-determination, then the self-determination of the developing fetus matters very much, too. Enough to override the mother's? Apparently so, for him at least.

Yeah, the right to life for these people seems to override the right to decline being an incubator. I suspect the idea that pregnancy is 'natural' prejudices their perception of the issue.

Helmholtz Watson:

Ultratwinkie:
snip

How is that legal that a random topic can be added to a bill? How is that even allowed that a bill on flood insurance can include some random section on abortion.

Because nobody made it illegal to do so, and whenever someone proposes such a bill to fix things other senators attach unrelated bills to it that would make things worse.

what the hell is up with rand paul? he's like the opposite of his father.

edit: unless i'm missing something here.

Well, the shit apparently doesn't fall far from the bat.

And yes, this is sadly business as usual.

godfist88:
what the hell is up with rand paul? he's like the opposite of his father.

edit: unless i'm missing something here.

He is a lot like his father. It comes down to how divisive abortion is. Some libertarians see the developing baby as a human whose liberties are being violated, others don't see it as a fully fledged human and want to protect women's liberties by having abortion be legal.

godfist88:
what the hell is up with rand paul? he's like the opposite of his father.

edit: unless i'm missing something here.

You're missing that he is, in fact, just like his father, his father just has his army of Paul-Bots ceaselessly watching the internet, waiting for any negative comment regarding Ron Paul to be made so they can immediately leap to his defense by either spouting barely-legible conspiratorial-backwoods-survivalist rubbish, or by reciting the Libertarian manifesto over and over again until anyone who disagrees gets bored and leaves.

As to the topic, quelle surprise, Republicans doing repugnant stuff, managing to take what was an occasionally annoying quirk of the system and transforming it into a tool to perpetrate injustice, obstinance, and spite.

*sigh* I really wish you'd stop it America, you're making me look at the House of Lords fondly.

Gold:

Wolverine18:

Dags90:

NO YOU'RE OUT OF ORDER!

Wait, what were we talking about? As others have stated, this isn't that uncommon. It's crazy how much power a single Senator has to muck up the whole process. It'd be one thing if half of the Republican Senators did this, it's quite another to have a rogue Senator screwing up everyone's day.

I can't stay mad at Rand Paul though, he's adorable.

I know its common in the US. I just was reflecting on the fact that it was stupid the US allowed it and I was wondering aloud if any other countries were so stupid. If you look to the basic rules of order used in most of the corporate world, such motions would likely barely be out of the person's mouth before they were ruled out of order, and they certainly would have no chance to motivate for the motion.

To answer your question, I'm pretty sure the New Zealand government tried something extremely similar, but not quite the same.

http://www.neowin.net/news/new-zealand-government-attempts-to-sneak-in-anti-piracy-law
http://modsreloaded.com/new-zealand-government-anti-piracy-law-t3553.html

Forgive the sources, I'm not sure how reliable they are.

What is essentially claimed, is that when the country was panicking and allowed a few laws to be pushed through immediately to help the rebuilding/aid of the country, someone snuck in an anti-piracy law, allowing it to go through without the public voting on it or some shit.

I could be completely wrong, I'm extremely sick right now and I don't know if it's 100% accurate, I just remembered hearing something like this.

That's actually different. The mover of a motion can put forward as broad a motion as they want, and that's allowed under pretty much all rules of order. The issue is someone else trying to turn a motion (law) into something other than intended by the mover, and that's what is usually out of order.

Helmholtz Watson:

Ultratwinkie:
snip

How is that legal that a random topic can be added to a bill? How is that even allowed that a bill on flood insurance can include some random section on abortion.

Your system of government creates bills like this all the time. In fact, its often how they get them passed. You want me to sign off on your bill, I add an ammendment to pork it up in an unrelated way for me, and then I sign the bill I don't really want to and you sign the pork you don't really want to.

As I said earlier, to my knowledge you are pretty much the only democracy that works in such a blatently silly way.

Skeleon:
I googled and found what I meant. Apparently it was a Rachel Maddow interview where Rand Paul said that. He later backpaddled a bit, though. In the video he makes it very clear he favours governmental racism be stopped by force of law, but sees private clubs, restaurants and businesses as being limited in their free speech by such laws. He would not go to such a restaurant and says he thinks it would be a bad business model, but he thinks it should be up to them.

Interesting video, all in all, but the relevant bit for this is from around 8:00 onwards.

http://crooksandliars.com/nicole-belle/rachel-maddow-corners-rand-paul-his-e

They have so much misplaced faith in society, I just don't get it.

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