We admire Harry Reid’s leadership but, in this monumental moment, his instincts and judgment failed him. And his place in history will be marked by this terrible day.
That said, let us not forget who authored this travesty; who stands for torture, for a dictatorial Presidency and against the Constitution and the rule of law–the Rubber Stamp Republican Congress.
Harry fucked up. Remember those letters we wrote Harry two years ago? Maybe it’s time to write him again: Harry, see what you get when you trust Republicans? You get screwed. And somebody in your office needs to learn to do a whip count in advance of your mouth writing checks other people’s votes are gonna have to cash. Maybe he thought he had the votes for the Specter amendment. Doesn’t matter now. Bend over in front of a Republican, this is what happens. Senator Catkiller isn’t interested in making your day.
So look. We have an election in six weeks. SIX WEEKS. I know my saying in the face of every crushing defeat that we just have to keep plugging gets tiresome and frankly starts to look insane. But … I’m tiresome and crazy, then, because I look at what happened today as the result of six years of unfettered Republican rule and if we want to repeal this mess of a bill that denies legal protections thatwill not threaten in any way the prosecution of actual terorrists, then we can’t let Republican rule stand.
Democrats should have filibustered this bill. I said so last night and I say so now, writing this as they’re about to vote. But Republicans never should have written it. A Republican president never should have pushed for it. Republican operatives never should have threatened to hold it over the heads of those Democrats running in tight races (much as those same Dems shouldn’t have fallen for the same line of bullshit again). It never should have come up. Under a Democratic leadership, it wouldn’t have. Which means we have work yet to do.
Six weeks till the electons. Six weeks until better, stronger, more ready-to-fight Democrats can be elected and bring voices to the House and Senate that are unafraid. Six weeks until we have the chance to actually have a Democratic majority to listen to us when we say, stand up for us, don’t let us down. Six weeks.
Give to your Democratic candidates in tight races. Give to your Democratic candidates in hopeless races, if they stand up for what you believe. Make note of those Democrats who displease you and vote and volunteer for their primary opponents. What happened today was shameful. Elect people who understand that.
Take a moment, feel the weight of it. It’s a terrible day. You should feel like hell. I feel like hell. I know, even if we repeal this thing in six months or two years, there’s prisoners between now and then who we can’t un-torture. There are “detainees” waiting for justice to whom one more day in America’s secret prisons is a lifetime.
But this country, once upon a time, voted to deny women the right to vote. We approved of slavery, we declared segregation legal, we marched Native Americans hundreds of miles just because we wanted to and we could. This is not the first time we have made a tragic mistake.
It would be an even more tragic mistake to allow this to stand because of our own disgust and inaction. Six weeks till we have the chance to start undoing all the damage that’s been done. Six weeks.
Get back up.