Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Working the system for Webb

By Libby
Updated below

That sound you hear is the people speaking loud enough to be heard inside the beltway. Webb's measure is inching towards passage and Reid has finally started talking like a majority leader. I like that Reid is holding firm on timetables and making the GOP own this occupation again. I don't want to get my hopes up but I think we may have finally managed to convince our Democratic leadership that winning isn't as important as fighting the good fight.

As for Webb's amendment, there are three Republicans who are showing signs of interest. One of them is mine, Liz Dole, who is up for re-election in 08. It's been odd for me to be represented by Republican senators. Most of my adult life I lived in Massachusetts and I always had the most liberal of Democrats. It almost wasn't necessary to keep in touch because they generally voted along my preferred lines. With my current reps, it often felt useless to call because you knew they were going to vote the party line anyway.

Nonetheless, I've faithfully asked them to vote for the important bills and it looks like Dole at least is listening this time and getting an earful. I had already emailed but since I was home early today I decided to call as well. Burr's interns sounded bored and he's a lost cause. His seat's not up for a few years yet. But Dole's switchboard was lighting up. I was put on hold and I could hear the calls coming in when I talked to the intern there.

The moral of the story is, the process can work, but only if we all participate. It literally took one minute to make both calls and simply ask them to support the Webb and the Habeas Act measures. If you haven't done it yet, take a minute yourself and call your Senators.

Update: Damn. You win some, you lose some. The Habe Act lost on a 56-43 vote but as the ACLU noted, it was a victory in that a majority voted to restore habe, even if it wasn't veto proof. I'm sure you'll be shocked to learn that Lieberman voted against it.

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