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McConnell, GOP Senators Hold DADT Repeal, Dem Initiatives Hostage in Letter to Harry Reid

All 42 GOP Senators have signed a letter from Mitch McConnellto House Majority Leader Harry Reid threatening to block all initiatives, including the Defense Authorization Act with DADT attached, until Republicans get their way on Bush tax cuts.

McconnellExcerpt from letter from GOP Senators to Harry Reid, via The Plum Line:

Dear Leader Reid,

The nation's unemployment level, stuck near 10 percent, is unacceptable to Americans. Senate Republicans have been urging Congress to make private-sector job creation a priority all year. President Obama in his first speech after the November election said "we owe" it to the American people to "focus on those issues that affect their jobs." He went on to say that Americans "want jobs to come back faster." Our constituents have repeatedly asked us to focus on creating an environment for private-sector job growth; it is time that our constituents' priorities become the Senate's priorities.

For that reason, we write to inform you that we will not agree to invoke cloture on the motion to proceed to any legislative item until the Senate has acted to fund the government and we have prevented the tax increase that is currently awaiting all American taxpayers. With little time left in this Congressional session, legislative scheduling should be focused on these critical priorities. While there are other items that might ultimately be worthy of the Senate's attention, we cannot agree to prioritize any matters above the critical issues of funding the government and preventing a job-killing tax hike.


We look forward to continuing to work with you in a constructive manner to keep the government operating and provide the nation's small businesses with economic certainty that the job-killing tax hike will be prevented.

However, Greg Sargent says that there's a good possibility that certain GOP Senators would abandon McConnell on this:

"Senator Susan Collins confirms to me that she could still vote for cloture for the Defense Authorization Bill containing repeal of DADT if ample time is alloted for floor debate and amendments...This wouldn't be the first time a tactic like this from McConnell has failed to maintain GOP unity, despite his threats to the contrary. On Wall Street reform, Dems were able to break the GOP filibuster despite McConnell's bluff...Someone should ask senators Richard Lugar, Olympia Snowe, and John Ensign whether they are willing to rule out a vote for DADT repeal if the Bush tax cut standoff isn't yet resolved. My bet is their answers might be surprising."

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  1. Obama asked them to do this, yesterday...this is nothing more than political cover so he can cave-in on the tax breaks & then claim "victory" if DADT passes. Yesterday wasn't about compromise it was about strategy. He's working w/ the GOP to try to make himself look better while giving us more FAIL.

    The President asked the GOP to play the villain and they were all to happy to comply. Ignore the man behind the curtain.

    Posted by: JSH | Dec 1, 2010 4:07:24 PM

  2. OK; I'm getting blue in the face from saying "Leave it to the Courts".
    It was never a valid law. It was always unconstitiutional......if these fucking tossers want to stand over an unconstitutional law let's wait until they are educated by the Judges.
    Senators don't know their arse from their elbows.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Dec 1, 2010 4:41:34 PM

  3. Won't continuing to discharge LGBT members of the military raise unemployment? Won't these people currently serving our nation be unemployed if they are discharged?

    Posted by: Tracy | Dec 1, 2010 4:50:07 PM

  4. OK, a little history Rowan, I am a a retired Navy Commander and a Democrat since I first voted in 1968. I have held elected office as a Democrat, and have listened to all the excuses the Democrats can muster to explain why they can't do anything for us. Finally they control both houses of Congress and the White House and still can't lead on LGBT issues. They don't feel the need to expend the political energy on LGBTconcerns because they believe that we have no other choice but to support them. Look at what Obama did with heath care reform...the first President to get it done and he can't take a stand on DADT or use the power of his office to get this done? There are a number of ways this "advocate" of ours could have ended DADT but he has chosen not to lead on this issue. I for one am tired of being the "abused wife" of the Democratic party. I didn't vote Republican, but I sure has hell didn't vote for any Democrats, and I refuse to cast another vote or spend another dime on them until they take action on LGBT issues. Look at how long we have been fighting for ENDA and it is still not happening! You remember what the definition of an insane person is: doing the same thing over and over expecting a different outcome...........go look in the mirror.

    Posted by: major707 | Dec 1, 2010 6:36:28 PM

  5. I blame the gay community for this, they campaigned every chance they got against Obama and the Democrats and in favor of the Republicans and now this is what we have to live with.

    Posted by: KayLow | Dec 1, 2010 7:27:56 PM

  6. Its time for the President of the Senate to take the Chair and two Democrat Senators to propose and second to suspend the rules and specifically rule xxii (22) to succeed that needs 50 Senators +1 or the Vice President to break a tie. Joe Bidens' Constitutional duty is to Chair the Senate, and he can do this by just walking in the door. Its been done before and is part of procedure. Harry ( Reid ) needs to hold his nerve and grow a spine and get this done - no 60 votes needed, it just takes 50 Democrats and the casting vote of the Vice President they stick together or get stuck separately.

    "Nothing Ventured Nothing Gained" [quote]

    Look up VP Rockerfeller on Google if you dont believe this.

    Posted by: Drakow | Dec 1, 2010 8:03:13 PM

  7. And this is another reason why I won't vote Republican.

    Filibuster is the equivalent of throwing a political temper-tantrum, though it has real consequences now. Way to classy, GOP.

    Still, the Democrats need to call their bluff, though I'm more than a little doubtful they have the backbone to.

    Actually make them stand there and blab on end until their voice grows hoarse.

    Posted by: Quill | Dec 1, 2010 11:52:32 PM

  8. The Obama Admin should send a similar letter promising to veto any extension of the very tax cuts that already broke the bank.

    Mitch: you lost. The House will switch NEXT YEAR, and the Senate will not. You can continue to be the party of stamping feet and baby crying like you've been doing, or you can be an adult and get to work.

    Posted by: Randy | Dec 2, 2010 2:58:36 AM

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