The Washington Post reports today that Senate Republicans ‘halted’ ethics and lobbying reform last night over an alleged ‘unrelated measure’, and quoted liars like Senator Harry Reid as portraying the Republicans as “against reform.”
Not so fast, though. Gaius at Blue Crab Boulevard breaks through the spin of the Post’s report and points out that in actuality that the ‘unrelated item’ mentioned in the Post piece is not unrelated at all:
It is not a “line item veto” nor is it an “unrelated measure.” Jonathan Weisman presumably has been reporting politics long enough to know that. The amendment would allow pork barrel items to be stripped out of unrelated legislation and sent back to Congress for an up or down, on the record vote. It is very much tied to ethics reform. The vote that failed last night was a vote on cloture. Harry Reid tried to cut off debate and eliminate an on the record vote for the amendment.
This is blatant political spin and is really beneath the Washington Post. Harry Reid needs to allow a simple up or down vote on the amendment. Everyone should be able to get behind a measure that would cut the pork barrel spending that is so often a political payback to lobbyists.
Buried deep within the WaPo article is the true guilty party on stalling this ethics reform bill (emphasis added):
Reid and McConnell worked to reach a compromise that would have brought the Gregg bill to a vote in the coming weeks, but that pact could not overcome the objections of Sen. Robert C. Byrd (D-W.Va.), an opponent of the line-item veto.
Yes, the Pork King of America.
Oh, and did I mention that Reid kicked and screamed about this bill before reaching a compromise with Senator McConnell?
There have been times when the WaPo has gotten it right on Republicans stalling bills (like this one) but this time they are just flat out spinning.