Arnold Schwarzenegger, (Ahnold) in the movie Kindergarten cop, had that great line when he told the class that he did not have a tumor. “It’s not a toomah.” But sometimes people believe what they want to, and this applies to Senators and the media and the groundlings who just don’t know any better more often perhaps than to a curious class of kindergartners repeating words they’ve heard grown-up use but whose meaning they do not yet entirely grasp.
Such it is with the filibuster.
The now famous Senator Bunning, in refusing to give unanimous consent to a spending bill, has been tagged with the now nefarious term filibuster. But as hogan at RedState points out here, it is anything but a filibuster. A filibuster is part of a debate. Senator Bunning is simply refusing to give consent to a vote without debate, and his point for debate (which no one seems to want to address) is this: we said we would not spend any more without knowing how first to pay for it. So how are we going to pay for this? Where is the 10 billion you want to spend without debate coming from?
I guess Senators are supposed to roll over and ignore rules, even the ones with the pungent scent of Obama-rhetoric still lingering over them. The echo from his speech has yet to fade from his formal signing of the Pay-Go legislation and it’s already under assault. And it’s not just democrats. There is no overwhelming preponderance of guilt from Republican Senators either. They almost all have cookie crumbs on their lips and guilty looks on their faces, just like the kindergartners who are to the last, prepared to announce that so-and-so took one first, as if that makes it right.
Mr. Bunning has at least briefly demonstrated what the greatest deliberative body in the world still seems to lack—and what just happens to be the primary reason why we rarely elect Senators to the office of the President—A spine.