David Vitter has been irritating Democrats for a while by promoting a plan (an amendment to an energy bill) that would put members of the Legislative branch and their staff under the effects of Obamacare. Since GOP and Democratic leadership got the OK to exempt themselves from La Casa Blanca, they think the issue should be dropped. Vitter disagrees.
And, because the Democrats are all about agreeing to debate and working out problems, they've decided to introduce some amendments if the vote happens.
Democrats had discussed offering one of two possible amendments -- one denying subsidized health benefits when there's probable cause the member hired prostitutes, and the other denying federal health care subsidies to anybody who sponsors or votes for the Vitter amendment.
What is triggering the current nasty back and forth between Vitter and Democrats is the Louisiana senator's health care amendment to a bipartisan energy efficiency bill. Vitter has been blocking votes on amendments to the energy bill until he's guaranteed a vote on his amendment, angering Democrats and some Republicans who don't want to lose federal health subsidies for themselves or their staffs.
I have held and will continue to hold David Vitter accountable for the "serious sin" he admitted to in 2007. It was unacceptable and better should be expected from someone who campaigns on conservative and family values. However, who exactly are the Democrats use that in an amendment when they have members who are the exact opposite of wholesome? Does Bob Menendez get denied his federal subsidy?
The Democrats have run out of actual arguments and are resorting to these kind of attacks and, what's more, the media seems all too happy to report on it. Politico is reporting the environmental spat between Vitter and Senate Environment and Public Works Committee chairwoman Barbara Boxer as having "drawn blood." Reid is saying Vitter and conservative Republicans need to "grow up" on the health care issue. I would submit they are a lot more grown up than a party willing to bring a prostitution scandal into a completely unrelated matter.
The fact is Louisiana voters seem to have forgiven Vitter, who has a high favorability and was re-elected over Obama cheerleader Charlie Melancon in 2010. What he did was wrong, but how he is making up for it to his constituency deserves far more praise than hate.
Harry Reid offers this hilarious counter to Vitter's proposal. Emphasis is mine:
But Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Vitter is trying to score political points by claiming he's for treating Congress equally, when he's actually proposed to treat Congress and their employees worse.
Reid has admitted, according to the not-so-unbiased Times-Picayune that the Obamacare is awful. Vitter isn't perfect, but I'll take his record the Democrats and Obamacare any day of the week. Except Sunday. That's my day to ignore politics and go play with my kid. But if I did pay attention to politics then, I totally would take his side over theirs.