Friday, January 20, 2006

Making amends

At last, another liberal who gets the game. Over at Liberal Oasis, the blogger has suggested that the Dems get into the constitutional amendment game. You'll recall that your humble blogstress has suggested that the minority party introduce one guaranteeing a right to privacy -- a right most Americans would be surprised to learn is mentioned nowhere in the Constitution. Liberal Oasis, on the other hand, is suggesting that Dems float one on campaign finance.

In a post titled, Dems Make Their Stand on Ethics: Can They Draw A Bright Line Even Brighter?, the Oasis gives us this:

On a Tuesday conference call with bloggers, Sen. Minority Leader Harry Reid showed some spine and savvy, saying there was little point cutting deals with GOPers on ethics when they’re the source of the problem.

Instead, Reid said Dems would offer proposals that draw a “bright line” between the parties on fighting corruption, so the public could see the difference.


The bummer is that the Democrats' ethics proposal, while stronger than the Republicans', still leaves a loophole for lobbyist-paid meals and travel that is part of campaign fundraising activties.

From the Oasis:
Reid was asked about that loophole on PBS’s Newshour last night:

JIM LEHRER: What about the fundraising loophole ... Are you going to do something about that?

REID: You know, Fritz Hollings, who is no longer in Congress ... He has been proposing for years a constitutional amendment so that we can put a lot of strong restrictions on campaign financing.

And we need to do that.

Again, we need to get Republicans to help us with that...

....But the main obstacle at this time is that the courts have struck down a lot of things we have done, and we need to do it with a constitutional amendment...

... Right now, constitutionally, we can't do it.


But why not go bold and propose the constitutional amendment?

Sure, you would need Republicans to pass a constitutional amendment in the Senate, but that’s not the point right now.

The point is to draw that bright line.
Amen, brother. Even better, the point is to push Republicans into a corner. Whether on privacy or campaign finance reform, Republicans would not have an easy time explaining a vote against an amendment for either, especially given the spying an lobbying scandals, and God's Own Party's great love for the amendment ruse. (Think flag-burning.)

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