Saturday, November 10, 2007
More On Anti-Incumbent Terrorism
Our Congress Critters deem this crime to be similar to the Jewish prohibition against attempting to name G_d, or various highly similar prohibitions in monarchies against criticizing the monarch. G_d forbid someone publish a S_n_t_r's name and his voting record during an election period. (Note - I actually believe that the rabbis got it right, but I have trouble extending that prohibition to monarchs and Congress Critters.)
Since the Supreme Court has made grumpy demurrals about the First Amendment, the solution in Senatorland (it's like Disneyworld, but the bathroom activity is a little more adult) is obviously to amend the Constitution:
The proposed amendment, sponsored by Senate Democrats Chuck Schumer of New York and Tom Harkin of Iowa, would overturn Supreme Court decisions that limit Congress' power to regulate the funding of political campaigns.Such barriers as the Supreme Court (those black-robed anti-incumbent terrorists) have raised have been founded on the First Amendment:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.The Supreme Court (those heretics!) truly irritated Congress this summer with their decision in Federal Election Commission v Wisconsin Right To Life, Inc. WRTL's "crime" was using candidate's names during the pre-election blackout period:
On July 26, 2004, appellee Wisconsin Right to Life, Inc. (WRTL),began broadcasting advertisements declaring that a group of Senators was filibustering to delay and block federal judicial nominees and telling voters to contact Wisconsin Senators Feingold and Kohl to urge them to oppose the filibuster.WRTL was informed by the election commission that the senators' names could not be so taken in vain, and the ads were halted. The Supreme Court decision set forth a new test to determine heresy under McCain-Feingold:
...a court should find that an ad is the functional equivalent of express advocacy only if the ad is susceptible of no reasonable interpretation other than as an appeal to vote for or against a specific candidate.Whoa! One can almost interpret that as permission to publish a s_n_t_r's voting record in conjunction with his sacred, never-to-be-spoken name. You may feel that this is pretty innocuous, but it caused great angst in Senatorland. McCain had always been a ferocious campaigner for a fundamentalist interpretation of the "No Incumbent Shall Fall" gospel. When FEC officials spoke against the attempt to make them the heavies, he let them know that the Wrath of McCain would fall upon them.
In FEC v WRTL, McCain joined with other not-to-be-named congressional gods to argue before the Supreme Court that WRTL's ad was a severe and blasphemous attempt to meddle with an election:
Because the three ads were broadcast on television, referred to a clearly identified candidate for federal office, and targeted the electorate of that candidate, the ads, if run during the statutorily prescribed period, would constitute electioneering communications.I recommend reading the brief. Personally I believe that McCain-Feingold was a bad bill and that the Supreme Court erred in McConnell, and that the latest decision doesn't fix that error. But I think we should all contemplate just how passionately our Congress Critters, and most especially our S_n_t_rs, believe that they should be immune from any and all attempts to distort their reelection messages with facts.
As for the latest exercise in futility, it got support from two Republicans as well as two Democrats. The one thing we can all be sure of is that we will get bipartisanship from our elected officials in such a cause. The most noble and entirely sacred Sen. _rl_n Sp_ct_r is prominent among those wishing to amend the Constitution to ensure that Congress can restrict the public's right to name them during elections.
Anyone want to join me in creating a corporation and running paid advocacy ads in the black-out period using the partial names of politicians? The only way to deal with our Congressional Critters's illusions is to ferociously ridicule them. At least everyone would get a good laugh out of it!
Rob - V. funny. It might work.
SW - Maybe we need a rabbinical council? I'd hate to get the FEC in trouble.
Tom, how could you? HOW COULD YOU? Are you going to join in the plague of men being mean to perfectly sweet female politicians? Don't you know that it is verboten to gang up? IS CHIVALRY DEAD?
Hillary just reminds me of Nixon too much. I can't do that either.
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