So you pay a lot of money for a security guard. He’s the best in the business, and promises to be loads better than the drunk you had before. Somehow, however, your home ends up getting burgled anyway. It seems the guard was busy doing other things when he said he’d be watching your home.
So you’re pretty much screwed, and you’re angry. Who do you blame?
1. Just the burglar; or
2. The burglar and the lazy security guard?
Some in the gay community, and the administration, would like you to believe that the Republicans are the sole ones responsible for “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” going down in flames this week. And to some extent they’re right – clearly it was the GOP that led the filibuster of the Defense Bill.
But is that really the whole story? That the Republicans did it?
Isn’t it true that the Senate leadership is supposed to rally its own caucus for important legislation? And just as importantly, doesn’t the President of the United States have his bully pulpit, in addition to other mechanisms for pressuring members of Congress on votes?
This past week, the Republicans led the charge to be sure. But it’s also true that Senator Reid was unable to keep his caucus in line – two defected and joined the GOP filibuster, giving them enough votes to kill the bill.
And then there’s the President. He was simply AWOL. While DADT repeal supporters were frantically trying to scrounge up the votes to block the filibuster, the President didn’t lift a finger to keep Democrats in line, or to try to embarrass Republicans for the “un-American” act of voting against a defense bill (something the GOP routinely accused Democrats of during their years in the majority). Instead of calling members of the Senate about the DOD bill, the President was busy calling the WNBA champions. And instead of punishing Democratic Senators who strayed and sided with the GOP in an effort to kill one of the President’s top campaign promises, VP Biden actually did a fundraiser for one of those Democrats the day after the ignominious vote.
We’ve been robbed. And you’d better believe I’m pissed at the thief. But I’m also pissed at the security guard who I gave a lot of money to in exchange for his promise to be my fierce advocate. When the going got tough, he chickened out. And the funny thing is, now he wants me to hire his buddies for another two years.
I get that the bad guys are still out there. But I’m thinking it’s time to look for a new bodyguard.