Three million in the bank and internal polling that showed him ahead was apparently not enough to keep Ben Nelson from announcing his retirement from the Senate; what makes this particularly entertaining is that the DSCC has already apparently dumped a million bucks on this race. Hey, do you know which Democratic Senators up for re-election in 2012 could have used that money?
ALL OF THEM.
PS: I am particularly thrilled by the fact that after January of 2013 I will no longer have to try to tell this guy apart from the other Senator Nelson. Of course, the question may have been moot anyway…
This is one of those ‘funny when it happens to other countries’ stories. Some background: Senator Tom Harkin (D) of Iowa, having happily participated in saddling the American people with trillions of dollars of generational debt at the behest of his liberal party leadership, has decided to make things right for folks by introducing a bill to cap ATM fees.
Gee. Thanks, Tommie.
Anyway, the bill died, but not before Senator Ben Nelson (D) of Nebraska reminded us that he lives in a wonderful, magic bubble land where things just sort of… happen… for him. By invisible gnomes, no doubt: Continue reading Sen Ben Nelson (D, NE): ‘I know about holograms.’
Regarding the alleged threat to close Nebraska’s military bases if Nelson doesn’t play ball on health care rationing, John Noonan spells it out for this administration (and other uninformed Democrats):
Offutt Air Force Base is one of the nation’s most critical command and control nodes, second to only to the National Military Command Center in the Pentagon. The base’s hardened facilities, designed to withstand a nuclear blast, are so optimized to support leadership during a national emergency that Offutt’s underground command bunker was President Bush’s command center of choice during the 9/11 attacks. It also serves a direct link between President Obama and the nation’s nuclear forces, as Offutt houses the nation’s Primary Alerting System, satellite and radio transmitter/receivers used in nuclear command and control functions, and our fleet of airborne command centers, which are designed to ensure the continuation of civilian and military leadership after a national disaster or military attack.
Unfortunately, these days the national Democratic party simply doesn’t think in terms of natsec as being independent from domestic politics. It makes perfect sense for them to threaten a criticial military base with closure; from their point of view, the only reason that the base exists where it is and as it does is to generate regional jobs and industries. Surely the military can handle having the base’s particular functions upended on a moment’s notice and transferred somewhere else. Which, in fact, the military can. At some expense; and which cost I understand that military personnel typically resent, when it’s not done for good reason.
I suggest that passing a health care rationing bill is not a good reason.
Put not your trust in Democrats.
They tabled the amendment that Senator Nelson offered for the health care rationing bill – the one that would have aligned it with the Stupak amendment for the House version – on a largely party-line vote (54/45, with Byrd not voting). Senator Nelson, despite vowing to filibuster*, is even now revising and extending his remarks:
A few reporters waiting outside the door asked him how it would effect his decision on whether to support the final effort.
“I want to continue to work on this,” he said, not ruling out his support, at least “not at this point in time. I want to continue to work on the project we’re working on… This makes it harder right now [to support the bill]. We’ll have to see if they can make it easier.”
(H/t: Hot Air) The NRLC has already announced that they will now oppose cloture of the health care rationing bill. Mind you, they also promised to score the vote on Nelson-Hatch, and it got tabled anyway. Nelson’s not up for re-election until 2012 anyway, and the man will be 71 by then; he might decide to just retire. So don’t rely on him keeping his word. The Senate is full of Democrats who talk big about their conservative principles, right up to the moment where they have to fight for them.
Continue reading Nelson prolife amendment tabled: Nelson (D, NE) caving to follow.
Via Glenn Reynolds (who thinks that Johnson should be confirmed), TPM notes that the Dawn Johnson nomination is being stalled by Democrats Arlen Specter (D-PA) and Ben Nelson (D-NE). Apparently, the latter is in a snit-fit over “subsidies to student lending institutions” and the former is being… Arlen Specter.
Reid, of course, is doing his usual game of blaming his inadequacies on the GOP, but really, what else can he do? Personally, I don’t really know enough about the situation to pontificate about Johnson one way or the other*, but I’d appreciate it if Reid learns to take responsibility for things for a change. Not to mention learning to not be so greedy. We let him have Lugar for this one, didn’t we?
*Although her lack of a book is actually kind of refreshing.
Crossposted to RedState.
In response to this story about how supposedly Senator Nelson of Nebraska had called in Senator Corker of Tennessee to try to get a “bipartisan solution” (read: “Republican cover”) for the Democrats’ debt bill, Sen. Corker’s office contacted Instapundit with the following:
UPDATE: A Corker spokesperson emails: “As I’ve told Fox, we were invited late yesterday to a meeting in Sen. Ben Nelson’s office and were surprised to learn by reading the news this morning that by accepting the invitation we had joined a gang. That’s not accurate and we did not attend the meeting.”
I repeat. The Democrats own this one. Because you won, remember?
Crossposted at RedState.