Funny, several friends and I were joking earlier today that pretty soon the elites and their media friends would take a new angle on Ken Buck, Rand Paul, Mike Lee, Sharron Angle, etc.Instead of calling them fringe, which is getting harder and harder to do given their successes, the media would instead contrast them to Tom Coburn and Jim DeMint, alleging that these people are far to the right of Coburn and DeMint. In effect, DeMint and Coburn would be centrists relatively speaking.It didn’t take 24 hours. The elites are so predictable.
With a Senate designed for comity, it isn’t clear whether such outsider tactics would simply change business-as-usual or destroy the institution, said Ross Baker, a congressional scholar at Rutgers University who specializes in Senate rules. Since the beginning of the republic, the Senate has required unanimous consent to end discussions on one bill and move to another. Unanimous consent is also needed to allow staff members on the floor to initiate a vote or limit the time spent on a bill.Such traditions are already strained by conservatives such as Mr. DeMint and Sen. Tom Coburn (R., Okla.), who have increasingly objected to consent agreements in an effort to shine a light on spending bills that once passed without debate. But, Mr. Baker asserted, “compared to people like [Colorado candidate] Ken Buck…Tom Coburn is Daniel Webster.“
Good grief.Of course, don’t worry. After November, Coburn and DeMint will again be portrayed as extremist.