Republicans’ unpatriotic resistance to New START

There is simply no modern precedent for the behavior of Republicans in the U.S. Senate. They are not only hyper-partisan, but they are also petty, petulant and unpatriotic, willing to jeopardize national security if they think they can hurt President Obama. Witness their growing resistance to a nuclear pact with Russia, the New START treaty.
The pact represents minimilist, mainstream downsizing of the nuclear weapons arsenals of the United States and Russia, a continuation of policies first envisioned by none other than Ronald Reagan. New START has been endorsed by every living secretary of state. That includes, obviously, Condoleezza Rice. George H.W. Bush has endorsed it.
But Republicans continue to come up with excuses, including an insistence that Obama is trying to “jam” the treaty through a lame duck session without giving them enough time to consider it. The treaty was signed by the U.S. and Russia in April; they’ve had months to read it.
Some Republicans, such as Jon Kyl of Arizona, claim the Obama administration hasn’t set aside enough money to modernize our remaining nuclear weapons. That, too, is nonsense, according to Linton Brooks, who ran the National Nuclear Security Administration under George W. Bush. Brooks said (via ThinkProgress)

you’ll hear concerns by some that the treaty may or may not be a good idea but you can’t possibly accept it because the U.S. nuclear weapons program is in disarray. And I think the administration’s answer to that is the fiscal 2011 budget with a very substantial increase for my former home, the National Nuclear Security Administration. And I will say flatly, I ran that place for five years and I’d have killed for that budget and that much high-level attention in the administration and I just – nobody in government ever said “my program has too much money” and I doubt that my successor is busy saying that. But he is very happy with his program and I think it does put us on a very firm, firm basis… I don’t think there’s any question this is in our interest and should be ratified.

So, what’s really going on with GOP opposition? They don’t want to give President Obama another victory (even if it also means a victory for the United States). There have been a few too many end-of-year stories written that depict Obama rising from the ashes, with the end of DADT and a stimulus package as a result of the tax deal.

As Mitch McConnell has said, his number one priority is making sure Obama doesn’t have a second term. He doesn’t care how much damage he does to the national interest in pursuing that goal.

435 comments Add your comment

David

December 20th, 2010
10:24 am

If the treaty is so important, why is the Senate taking it up just now, in the midst of a lame duck session, with extreme time pressure? Is this a proper way to consider a major treaty for our country?

And, CT, I’m finding you and Bookman increasingly resorting to questioning their opponents’ patriotism. Perhaps you’re turning to this last refuge of scoundrels because you’ve discovered you have no more race cards to play.

George W

December 20th, 2010
10:25 am

Darwin….HBO has a special on right now called “House of Saddam” I suggest you watch it.

Jimmy62

December 20th, 2010
10:25 am

15 years after the Democrats started DADT, a policy many of their voters claim is bigoted, it took a major electoral defeat and the rise of the supposedly racist and homophobic GOP to reverse the policy.

It’s interesting how for all the rhetoric about how racist and bigoted the right is, almost all major legislation protecting the rights of minorities came from the right. And almost all racist legislation that favors one group over another, or denies the rights of a particular group, came from the left.

Rhetoric= GOP is racist, Dems are good.

Reality= Dems make racist and bigoted policies, GOP reverses them.

Joel Edge

December 20th, 2010
10:26 am

retired early@10:14
I don’t think anybody’s arguing numbers. My problem is locking out anti-missle development with a country that is basically not a threat. The Russians don’t want to throw nukes around any more than we do. Personally, I think we should have a no proliferation deal added where missile defense is only non-deployable outside of CONUS. Let the countries that involved with their defense deal with it. We can’t keep worrying about everyone else’s defense.
How many nukes we have is beside the point. We’re not going to use them unless all h@#l breaks loose. We basically arguing a treaty that would be appropriate in the 80’s.

retired early

December 20th, 2010
10:26 am

Luangtom

Putin is not the president of Russia.
So….we should never have treaties…”they do no good…”
Sounds like the best rationalization for denying Obama a ‘victory’ that you could come up with on short notice….oh, i’m sorry……rationalization means “making up things to prove your point”.

Keep up the good fight!

December 20th, 2010
10:27 am

acjs… A supermajority in the current Senate. Hmmmm… do tell me the 60 votes that the Dems have and explain how the fillabuster and cloture processes work. Then since you apparently live in a distorted reality, we can understand your claims.

ajcs

December 20th, 2010
10:28 am

retire early-
sorry, you are just wrong. now, are you going to take your own advice or are you going to attempt to explain yourself away? i for one bet that you will not admit you are wrong, but hey, its Christmas time at least.

Kamchak

December 20th, 2010
10:29 am

Most of you wouldn’t know the difference between Bach and Shotakovich…

Bach was Baroque, never heard of this Shotakovich individual.

Darwin

December 20th, 2010
10:30 am

Joel @9:57 “if Al Gore had been president when 9/11 happened”
“You think these people would have supported our president like was done with W?”
“I suspect there would have been little to support. Since we’re guessing here. Saddam would still been power. We wouldn’t be in Afghanistan. Maybe (at most) a few air and Tomahawk strikes in training camps or aspirin factories. Condemnation of the terrorist and clean up the mess. End of story.”

Saddam would stil been power. Where’s the WMD? Lies lies lies lies lies, from the right wing facists that run the Republican party.

JKL2 @ 10:11 “You know, if Al Gore had been president when 9/11 happened, what do you think the Republican response would have been? You think these people would have supported our president like was done with W?

Yes, they would have tried to supported the president. Unfortunately. President Gore would have done nothing in response the way Clinton did nothing in response to attacks against our country. Hard to support “do nothing” as a policy when you’re being attacked.

I’m sure the obama policy of “apologize and throw money at them” will continue to win over the hearts of the world.”

You’re the one who needs to apologize. Your comments are biased and baseless.

Joel Edge

December 20th, 2010
10:30 am

Darwin@10:22
“So, you guys think that our policies in Iraq and Afghanistan has been a success?”
Nope, never said that. If you guessing about things might have been, might as well make up stuff also.

Jack

December 20th, 2010
10:30 am

If some liberals trust Russia, they’ve found some pretty good stuff to smoke.

ajcs

December 20th, 2010
10:31 am

“keep u” – unlike others in this board, i will admit that i am wrong. i thought they did have a supermajority with the two indies caucasing with the dems. I forgot about brown.

Keep up the good fight!

December 20th, 2010
10:32 am

I forgot once again that a liberal may say anthing they want without fear of reprisal, but a conservative must offer heavily detailsed citation to support their point of view

Grief, again with the exaggeration. Reprisals?

You admit that this is not “appeasement” corrrect? So we dont have to deal with that perjorative distortion.

GT/MIT

December 20th, 2010
10:33 am

retired early:

Your comment gives pause to the question, how is Aamerica coping with national security without your expertise?

granny godzilla

December 20th, 2010
10:35 am

ajcs

yes you are mistaken

i’d think somebody as all fired smart as you woulda’ known that….

T-Town

December 20th, 2010
10:35 am

Whether the START pact is ratified or not could be, should be, very important. What has my attention is that Ms. Tucker uses the word unpatriotic when describing those within the Republican party that won’t support it. As I remember in 2007, when he was campaigning for president, then Senator Obama was photographed failing to put his hand over his heart during the National Anthem. Now, we he unpatriotic? Or would it be unpatriotic for me to bring this up.

retired early

December 20th, 2010
10:35 am

Joel Edge

I completely agree that we need to go further in the START treaty to reduce any further advancement of Nuclear weapons, but it’s always 2 steps forward, 1 step back with the Russians and we connote even get this “lame” version thru our own GOP Senate, so….what do you do…for now ???
You just pass the best you can get .

Keep up the good fight!

December 20th, 2010
10:35 am

Jack…. Again one of the major points of the treaty is verification.

ajcs — glad we got that cleared up

Darwin

December 20th, 2010
10:35 am

Joel blogged: “Saddam would still been power. We wouldn’t be in Afghanistan. ”
I ask again, why mention Saddam? What does Saddam have to do with 9/11? Your blog insinuates that we needed to remove Saddam due to 9/11. And you state we wouldn’t be in Afghanistan. Take a look at the polls lately? I ask that you try and provide a basis for your misinformed comments. Maybe a true leader would have gone into Afghanistan and hunted down OBL. And not moved our forces away from the original theatre and into Iraq.

George W

December 20th, 2010
10:36 am

Darwin….Please answer this question. Prior to W going to war with Iraq what other US President(s) went to war with Saddam?

jconservative

December 20th, 2010
10:37 am

Ragnar Danneskjöld

And a Merry Christmas to you and your family. I am sure you would agree that in this country we spend too much time contemplating the return of Santa instead of contemplating the return of the Son of Man.

On the treaty:

I have read the treaty. Have you read the treaty? (Hint – I am retired and have the time.) Like all treaties it has too many words. Apparently the written language was created for business contracts and treaties. Grunts and sign language seem to work for everything else.

There is no opposition to the treaty today based on the claim that this treaty “disarms” the USA. That claim was advanced during the early fall
but was dropped a few weeks ago in the face of reality. The main opposition to the treaty today is not on the treaty itself but on the timing of the vote,the US spending on the US arsenal and the Preamble to the treaty.

McCain has a problem with the Preamble to the treaty and its language on defensive missiles. And I can see his point. But his opposition is on the Preamble. The body of the treaty has no provision on defensive missiles to which McCain objects. McCain attempted to amend the treaty Preamble but lost on a close vote.

I do not know how this vote will come down. McCain has a problem with the treaty and his problem is one of substance. The Kyl and McConnell reasoning is pure political to my reading of their stated positions.

Having read the treaty and hundreds of pages pro and con on the matter I would vote for ratification.

But the Constitution requires a 2/3 vote on treaties for a reason. The reason is that every president, when negotiating a treaty knows it must get a 2/3 vote in the US Senate, before the treaty is ratified. Every country negotiating with the US knows that it is only so much waste paper unless ratified by the US Senate. A large majority of the Senate should look at the proposed treaty and make a decision on the treaty.
On the treaty! The Senate owes that to the country.

ajcs

December 20th, 2010
10:37 am

Granny – thanks for your comment. now you know why no one ever admits their mistakes. because people like you will not just accept it and move on. no, you have to make a snide remark and kick a person while they are down.

please stay in CT’s and Obama’s camp. for those of us that are bootstrapping ourselves and trying to work America out of this mess the repubs and dems created, we really do not need your kind.

The Fallen

December 20th, 2010
10:37 am

I think its funny that anytime someone disagrees with the Democrats they are, according to CT, unpatriotic. Democrats are the only ones allowed to dissent. I am not surprised, just pointing out what everyone already knows.

T-Town

December 20th, 2010
10:38 am

Enter your comments here

gatorman770

December 20th, 2010
10:39 am

What branch of service did you serve in Cindy?
You sure make the graduates of Auburn that HAVE read the Constitution, Bill of Rights, Federalist Papers and have common sense, look dumb when people find out you’re supposedly a Auburn Graduate!

Good Grief

December 20th, 2010
10:40 am

“Where’s the WMD? Lies lies lies lies lies, from the right wing facists that run the Republican party.”

WMDs were found, in the form of gases and chemicals used in the process. So while a ’shovel-ready’ WMD was not located, the parts for one were in Saddam’s possession. It’s not the right’s fault that the left-leaning media continues to change the definition of things.

Dirty Dawg

December 20th, 2010
10:41 am

I know many of those around here don’t care why folks aren’t as happy with Obama as they were, but I also know that a pretty large percentage of those ‘negatives’ are from those of us that think he should have had Bush, Cheney and, at least, half of that vile administration in jail by now.

As for the Republicans’ view of the START Treaty, fact is they’re just pissed that they’ve spent the past, almost, two years dedicated and working hard to see to it that this administration, and the Democratic Congress, didn’t do anything that could potentially be seen as ‘helping’ the country…and now they’re seeing all their work, or at least a lot of it, going down the drain…the bast***s.

Kamchak

December 20th, 2010
10:42 am

I think its funny that anytime someone disagrees with the Democrats Republicans they are, according to CT Ann Coulter, unpatriotic.

fixed your typos.

JKL2

December 20th, 2010
10:42 am

darwin- You’re the one who needs to apologize

Still waiting on the opinion poll results to decide what I should do. I’m sure to teleprompter will have a lovely speech waiting for me later that will help me dodge the issue. It’s my “lazer-like focus on job creation” that has me acting so confused…

Joel Edge

December 20th, 2010
10:42 am

retired early@10:35
“to reduce any further advancement of Nuclear weapons”
I would love to learn how this treaty is going to do that. North Korea has shown no interest in abandoning it efforts to gain a nuclear capacity and a delivery system. Iran, ditto. We’ve gone well beyond superpowers exchanging nukes in the apocalypse. Now it’s more likely a shipping container in major harbor.

Darwin

December 20th, 2010
10:42 am

George W – And what am I going to learn? That the U.S. props up dictators just like the communists? That the U.S. overthrow democracies just to get oil?

joe in tucker

December 20th, 2010
10:43 am

Typical Cynthia article – disagree with the president ( or any black politician for that matter ) and she gets her liberal panties in a wad and breaks out the race card… and the AJC wonders why i won’t pay for a subscription!

ronald

December 20th, 2010
10:43 am

“You sure make the graduates of Auburn that HAVE read the Constitution, Bill of Rights, Federalist Papers and have common sense, look dumb.”

Lets be clear here…Auburn is not exactly where the southeastern braintrust resides.Its basically a party haven for metro Atlanta kids who didn’t get into Georgia or Georgia Tech. And stop acting offended, you know its true.

granny godzilla

December 20th, 2010
10:43 am

ajcs

correcting your error is being kicked while you are down? bootstrapping yourselves?

it’s a bit early for melodrama.

B Cosby

December 20th, 2010
10:44 am

T-Town @ 10:35. Yes it would be unpatriotic for you to suggest anything on this blog about the Savior. The same man that refused to wear a lapel pin of the U.S. flag because he did not have to prove his patriotism to anyone. The person who’s wife is finally proud to be an American after her husband picks up a nomination, yet this woman has no problem spending our tax dollars on pwersonal vacations. What was she elected to?

Darwin

December 20th, 2010
10:46 am

George W: “Darwin….Please answer this question. Prior to W going to war with Iraq what other US President(s) went to war with Saddam?” Answer: Your papa sent Rumsfield to meet with Saddam in the 1980s after he gassed the Kurds. The U.S. government’s position was that it was an internal affair to be dealt with by the Iraqi people. At that time, Saddam was a dictator favored by the West. Actually, it was the CIA who helped put him into power.

ronald

December 20th, 2010
10:47 am

“I think its funny that anytime someone disagrees with the Democrats Republicans they are, according to CT Ann Coulter, unpatriotic.”

Conservatives never annointed Ann Coulter as their official spokesman. Its another tactic by left..to basically choose our most extreme voice and then pretend that she speaks for all of us. She doesn’t.

Keep up the good fight!

December 20th, 2010
10:48 am

Yes. Let’s all agree. Wearing a lapel flag is what defines you are patriotic or not. Why I bet if Osama wore a US flag lapel pin he would be a republican patriot.

Joel Edge

December 20th, 2010
10:48 am

Darwin @10:35
“Your blog insinuates that we needed to remove Saddam due to 9/11.”
My blog insinuates none of that. If Gore had been president (your supposition) then I’m merely supposing that we would have never gone into Iraq, or Afghanistan. WMDs or not. After much saber rattling and weeping, we would have done basically nothing. Maybe a in-the-dark assassination attempt. Maybe not even that.

I like ajcs even if granny doesnt

December 20th, 2010
10:49 am

now, onto some hypocrisy:

From the Democrats.org website -
“Democrats have a long and proud history of defending Civil Rights and expanding opportunity for all Americans. From the Civil Rights Act of 1964 to the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act in 2009, Democrats have fought to end discrimination in all forms—including discrimination based on race, sex, ethnicity or national origin, language, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, or disability…”

Democrats have been consistently racist and give handouts to the poor, black and hispanic, uneducated poplace to keep them in line (dont bite the hand that feeds you). they also fill their ranks with people that think they are smarter than everyone else.

Since Lincolns time, Dems have been opposed to ALL equality when it was not popular and amazingly support equality when it is an easy choice (again, Dems have no spine). Lincoln was unpopular and called a traitor by the opposing party (yeah, thats you dems). JFK opposed all civil rights legislation until it became a popular thing to do so (look at all the civil rights bills the republicans tried to pass in the 50’s and were continually block by, you guessed it, the dems). DADT was a clinton-led initiative, and if I am not mistaken, he was a democrat.

As a matter of fact, the record shows that since 1933 Republicans had a more positive record on civil rights than the Democrats.

In the 26 major civil rights votes after 1933, a majority of Democrats opposed civil rights legislation in over 80 percent of the votes. By contrast, the Republican majority favored civil rights in over 96 percent of the votes.

so dems, get off your high horse, come down from the ivory tower, and be honest with yourselves. You all are the racist, homophobes that try to censor opposition speak and writings.

The Fallen

December 20th, 2010
10:53 am

CT also thinks I am unpatriotice because I would rather pass along the fruits of my labor to my children than have the government seize 55% of it upon my passing. She thinks the government has more right to it than my offspring, and I am unpatriotic for not agreeing with her.

Typical.

retired early

December 20th, 2010
10:53 am

Joel
I am not saying this START treaty does that… just the opposite. I also was referring to this $ to advance the weapons themselves..as in newer… more clever ways to pop a nuke.

Tommy Maddox

December 20th, 2010
10:53 am

“Party over national security”?

Would that be similar to the Dems howling about military issues during the Bush years or leaked military planning information being broadcast by the NY Times?

Gm

December 20th, 2010
10:53 am

B Cosby: I bet you had no problem with other first ladies spending your tax dollars? She and other 30 million African Americans who fathers fathers were beaten and murdered have every right to feel like that.
Look at the hate toward her husband by some of the sick tea party people, before you shoot off at the mouth put your self in other people shoes.

Get Real

December 20th, 2010
10:54 am

What’s wrong with having a detailed review and floor debate of a treaty that was negotiated by the Obama team? If it was worth the paper it is written on then it would stand up to scrutiny. Why try and ram it through a lame duck session of Congress, just like the omnibus bill. The current congress is not legitimate as the American people sent a loud and clear message on November 2nd.

What is unprecedented Tucker, is that a lame duck session of congress trying to enact major pieces of legislation, that simply is not done and flies in the face of the election.

ajcs

December 20th, 2010
10:54 am

and granny, “keep up the good fight” had already corrected my error and you know it. you merely were piggybacking on his correction and decided to throw in a cheap shot to boot.

George W

December 20th, 2010
10:56 am

Darwin….your ignorance amazes me. What about Clinton. Research Clinton and Iraq you may be surprised.

Joel Edge

December 20th, 2010
10:57 am

retired early@10:53
“I am not saying this START treaty does that… just the opposite.”
Then what’s the point. Drag out the one that expired, lower the numbers and get it re-ratified. Then move on. At least agreement could be found on that one. Without maybe limiting our defensive ability.
Better the animal you know…..

granny godzilla

December 20th, 2010
10:57 am

Tommy

Yep

Party over national security. That’s exactly it.

And no it would not be like pointing out that we attacked a country that did not attack us. That was and still is true and needs to be pointed out over and over and over.

And no it would not be like the NYT leaks any more than it would be about outing a CIA agent.

It’s kinda like protecting your darling daughter from loose nukes.

ronald

December 20th, 2010
10:58 am

“CT also thinks I am unpatriotice because I would rather pass along the fruits of my labor to my children than have the government seize 55% of it upon my passing. She thinks the government has more right to it than my offspring, and I am unpatriotic for not agreeing with her. Typical.”

The Fallen- Sadly, you are correct here. That is exactly how CT thinks. People like her would refer to your children as “lazy” “greedy” and “not hard working” because you left them an inheritance. They never think back to the long hours that you put in. In CT’s case, as is the case with most blacks in the US, this attitude is likely driven by racial overtones. They see wealth as something that is unfairly accumulated by caucasians, and they use gov’t tools like estate tax as a way to redistribute wealth to minorities. If African Americans saved at the same rate as Caucasian American and were able to generate similar levels of wealth, then you wouldn’t see people like CT fighting tooth and nail for estate taxes.