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Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Moderate Democrats To The Rescue

Barack Obama's agendas sail through the House regularly, but have had problems in the Senate because of the filibuster option. With Al Franken being triumphant for his Senate seat, that now gives Democrats the number, 60, that would be needed to pass legislation unhindered.

Except, not all Democrats will vote according to party lines.

The moderate Democrats, often referred to as the "Blue Dog Democrats", many of which were voted into office in consercative areas, were elected because they do not always follow party line, they, instead, follow the will of their constituaents and are considered centrists.

These centrists very well may be the only thing standing between Obama's socialistic policies and America.

From The Hill:

Half a dozen members of the Senate Democratic Conference pose the biggest threat to President Obama’s agenda, giving Senate Republicans a fighting chance to block the administration’s major expansions of government.

GOP leaders have begun reaching out to these centrists, hoping they will buck their party on Obama’s two biggest initiatives: healthcare reform and climate change legislation.

Now that Democrats control 60 votes, Republicans must peel off a few members of the majority to stage a filibuster.

Leading the pack of potential defectors are Sen. Ben Nelson, a pro-business Democrat from Nebraska; Sen. Joe Lieberman, a self-described Independent Democrat from Connecticut; and Sen. Mary Landrieu, a Louisiana Democrat who represents a conservative state.

All three have expressed concerns about the core element in Obama’s healthcare proposal: a government-run insurance program that would compete with the private sector. The three also worked together this year to successfully cut more than $100 billion from Obama’s economic stimulus package.

The other Democrats who are expected to voice the most serious objections to either or both of the administrations top priorities are: Sens. Evan Bayh (Ind.), Blanche Lincoln (Ark.) and Mark Pryor (Ark.).

“The Democratic Conference has 60 votes, if they’re all here, and if they are straight party-line that means that Republicans cannot stop legislation,” said Senate Republican Whip Jon Kyl (Ariz.).

“[But] it is not all that common to have total party-line votes. If a couple of Democrats don’t vote with their party, then it doesn’t matter that they have 60 votes.”

Count on Democratic leaders to pressure these moderate Democrats, but whether that pressure is enough to force them to vote against their constituency and ruin their own chances to be reelected, is something time will tell, but it is doubtful that some of these politicians would play Russian Roulette with their careers, knowing political suicide when they see it.

If you are a constituent of any of the Blue Dogs, you should be contacting your Senator and making your position on these issues very clear and making it understood to them, they are in office because of the people they were chosen to represent and they can just as easily be replaced in the next election.