Ben Nelson Is a Hypocrite on Abortion Funding:
Follow the bouncing ball here: So, on Saturday, the GOP, as is their dipshit way, was gonna filibuster an omnibus spending bill that would keep most of the government functioning and give budget increases to many a department. The Democrats, hanging fairly tight and with a couple of Republicans siding with them, needed one final vote to get to the magical sixty, thus invoking cloture, thus leading to a vote on the committee report of the appropriations bill (the committee report being, in short, the version of the bill hammered out by Senate and House negotiators and already passed by the House). Of course, it all came down to Joe Lieberman. Why? Because nothing tickles Liberman's scrotum quite so much as the assertion of whatever vanity-driven power he holds.
And, oh, how delighted Lierberman was. It being Saturday and the sabbath and Hannukah, and Lieberman being an Orthodox-flavored Jew, Glory Whore Joe walked the three miles from his Georgetown synagogue to enter the Senate chamber wearing a bright orange scarf and a shit-eating grin to cast the vote that led to cloture. No horse available? No carriage? Well, fuck it. The next day, on Sunday, and, with apparently no Amish senators needing the day away from motorized devil-machines, the conference report passed, which means that everything but defense now has a budget.
But this ain't about Lieberman. That fucker can wait his turn. No, let's instead talk about Ben Nelson, Democratic Senator of Nebraska. He voted for cloture and for the bill. Hey, that's awesome. Good on him. That was on Saturday. But you may know Ben Nelson most recently from the Nelson-Hatch Amendment to the health care reform bill, which would have tightened restrictions on abortion funding, which is not funded at all by could be by implication of other spending not on abortion. Or some such shit. The amendment failed. Nelson, in response, said of the bill, "This makes it very hard for me to support it."
Yesterday, on CBS's Face Bob Schieffer's Corpse, Nelson reiterated that, even with the new negotiations on Medicare, "I still have the unique issue of abortion...I can’t support the bill with the -- the abortion language that’s there." So Ben Nelson has a moral stand that he's taking. Agree or disagree with him, no matter how much good a bill may do for millions of people, there's a bottom line for him, and that's not a single penny even remotely spent on even telling women that abortion exists. Well, disagree as one might, it's honorable to stick to one's guns.
Oh, wait. No, sorry. That's wrong. There's no honor here. See, because Ben Nelson voted for the aforementioned omnibus spending bill. That bill, H.R. 3288, also approved the budget for the District of Columbia. There used to be all kinds of restrictions on how the city of DC could use its money because a chunk of its budget comes from the Congress and because it's always great that a Senator from, say, Alabama can have sway over such things. But, lookie here, there's actually a major lifting of spending restrictions in that bill, including striking out language that said "That amounts provided to said projects under such title shall not be expended for abortions" and "that all pregnancy counseling shall be nondirective." Also struck out: "None of the funds appropriated by this Act [will] provide, pay for, provide coverage of, or provide referrals for abortions." This is not to mention the cutting of "None of the funds appropriated in this Act, and none of the funds in any trust fund to which funds are appropriated in this Act, shall be expended for any abortion." In fact, all restrictions on public funding for abortions in DC, restrictions that used to be there, have been struck out.
Or, in other words, Ben Nelson, who is threatening to shitcan the entire health reform bill over even indirect abortion funding, voted to allow direct funding of abortions. It wasn't hidden - ant-abortion forces had pointed it out. And even Democrat Bart Stupak over in the House stuck to his Jesus guns and voted against the bill.
So what's the difference? Does Ben Nelson hate the fetuses of Washington, DC? Well, the Rude Pundit doesn't know that one way or the other. But he does know that the omnibus spending bill, which would have passed even if Nelson had been a good but soldier and voted for cloture but then against the conference report, doesn't have anything in there that might affect the profits of the health insurance industry.
Unlike, say, any health care reform bill that includes even a nod to a public option or government spending on health insurance. And since Ben Nelson sucks the scabby cock of the insurance industry as its bought and paid for bitch for three election cycles now to the tune of $2 million, when Aetna wants to come on his face, Aetna comes on his face.
Or, in otherer words, there is no real principle at work here, no morality, just typical political expedience to pleasure whoever needs pleasuring at the moment.