Monday, December 21, 2009

Shameful. Just shameful.

It is so embarrassing to be from Oklahoma sometimes. Take a look:

At 4 p.m. Sunday afternoon -- nine hours before the 1 a.m. vote that would effectively clinch the legislation's passage -- Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) went to the Senate floor to propose a prayer. "What the American people ought to pray is that somebody can't make the vote tonight," he said. "That's what they ought to pray."

It was difficult to escape the conclusion that Coburn was referring to the 92-year-old, wheelchair-bound Sen. Robert Byrd (D-W.V.) who has been in and out of hospitals and lay at home ailing. It would not be easy for Byrd to get out of bed in the wee hours with deep snow on the ground and ice on the roads -- but without his vote, Democrats wouldn't have the 60 they needed.
Durbin, learning of Coburn's prayer, went to the floor 45 minutes later to challenge him to a rhetorical duel. Coburn declined to return. "I don't think we should be wishing misfortune on either side of the aisle," Durbin said of his absent colleague.

Coburn was wearing blue jeans, an argyle sweater and a tweed jacket with elbow patches when he walked back into the chamber a few minutes before 1 a.m. He watched without expression when Byrd was wheeled in, dabbing his eyes and nose with tissues, his complexion pale. When his name was called, Byrd shot his right index finger into the air as he shouted "aye," then pumped his left fist in defiance.

It's all from Dana Milbank's column in the Washington Post.

That wonderful Senator Byrd can't really last much longer, can he? He will be so, so missed.


  1. Anonymous11:02 PM

    Thanks for posting this. While I don't necessarily agree with Sen. Coburn's choice of words, this us-versus-them mentality has been fostered at both sides of the aisle. Such a partisan division can do the country no good.

    Also, I believe that it is often positions of power that reveal the true nature of a person or a group. The Democratic party has collectively failed miserably in this regard. And this comes from a life-long leftist and liberal!

    The only solution is hold all our politicians accountable and continually remind them that they are in fact simply our elected representatives.

    - Learning to See.

  2. Anonymous11:39 AM

    I agree with you re: being embarrassed about being "from Oklahoma". I recently sent Jim Inhoff an e-mail stating that he was "one of the reasons" I live in California instead of Oklahoma, where I was born and raised.I am more than embarrassed...I am ashamed.

    annie c


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