A Reminder To Congressional Democrats: You Have Spines

It’s going to be a long four or even eight years if Congressional Democrats can’t locate their spines so they can follow them to their heads and pull them out of their asses.

I get that we’re supposed to be the “take the high road” people when it comes to the left versus right paradigm these days, but I don’t think I’m too far off base when I say that far too many fucking Democrats in Senate committees give “Yes” votes to Trump’s cabinet members. There was no need for Senator Liz Warren to give the thumbs-up to Ben Carson for HUD Secretary. Her reasoning she gave in social media platforms was logical enough, but given the stakes at hand, and that Carson would survive the housing committee hearing without her vote in the affirmateive, it just wreaks of the kind of shit that makes liberals lose faith in the Democrats.

This is the time for decisive leadership and righteous obstruction. This is the time for every congressional Democrat to oppose every cabinet member that hasn’t satisfied ethics questionnaires. It’s the time for congressional Democrats to insist that potential cabinet members be thoroughly vetted for business ties and relationships with foreign governments. We have no doubt that one country in particular had a vested interest in Trump winning, and attempted to actually influence the election to achieve that interest. The future of our republic, of self-governance, is at stake, and call me crazy, but I would expect to see the confirmation votes much closer.

What this is not is a time for taking the high road. For eight years Republicans obstructed only because they feared the Obama agenda. Well, why the fuck isn’t turnabouts fair play? At least the Obama administration was operating under a clear electoral mandate, having won decisive popular vote and Electoral College margins of victory. The Republicans were obstructing in the name of the stubborn, obstinate minority, while the Democrats should be obstructing in the name of the actual majority, the real will of the people.

Sure, the Dems sacrificed a big part of their leverage when they killed the filibuster’s power out of desperation to get Obama court picks through. But that doesn’t mean they don’t have the ability to rail on bad policies in public, and to actually do something. I see a lot of talk of outrage from Democrats in congress, but I want to see an action plan. I want to hear that they are pursuing impeachment because of Trump’s brazen disregard for avoiding even the appearance of foreign money enriching his coffers.

I’m not looking for a coup. I’m looking for legislative backbone. I’m looking for them committing to four years of filibustering Trump’s Supreme Court nominee if that’s what it takes. Ultimately, I want Democrats to behave as if they got more votes than Republicans did and therefore have the actual mandate to govern, because that’s exactly what happened.

Conservatives in this country have a massive ego right now. They truly think a margin of 80,000 votes spread out over three swing states is enough to mean they should get everything they want with no regard to the literally millions more of us who voted against their guy. They want us to believe that the popular vote is irrelevant completely, not just irrelevant to the ultimate winner. But that’s just bullshit, no matter how you slice it.

I wish that our elected liberals had the guts that every day liberals do. You know, the ones that marched all over the country on the day of the Women’s March? Congressional Democrats should be like them. Or they could take a page out of the books of the thousands and thousands of protesters that swarmed international airports all over the country this past weekend, standing up for real American values, and not bumper sticker pabulum that Republicans want you to think is anything of real substance.

The protests are confusing conservatives because they really don’t seem to grasp what it means when you only win the election on a technicality. It means that lion’s share of political energy actually sits with their opponents. It means that in winning like they did, they’ve awoken the masses in a way they can’t quite understand yet. And the Democrats risk squandering this energy if they don’t harness it.

It was great to see Liz Warren out there at Logan Airport. And all the congressional Dems that made it out to a protest deserve credit. But when it comes time to punch the clock Monday morning, I want more out of them.

They can do old school, real filibusters where they just do not cede the floor until exhaustion takes over. They can stage sit-ins on the floor of the House and Senate to protest repealing Obamacare, privatizing the social safety net, or literally any other action item on the Republicans’ agenda that the majority of Americans actually don’t want.




I’m tired of watching the so-called liberals in our government roll over. The time for being shocked by Trump’s victory is over. He’s president now. It’s time to take a page out of the Republican playbook during the Obama years and hunker down. Democrats need to find their spines. They need to stand up for the things their constituents believe in. We have every right to be the loyal opposition as they had.

Our voices and our demonstrations are meaningless until they’re backed up by bold, brave, elected leadership. Feckless, mealy-mouthed, wishy-washy attempts at bipartisanship shouldn’t be on the menu. The Republicans didn’t elect a sane person with whom respectful, rational discussions can be had. They elected a toddler with a penchant for Twitter tantrums. He’s dangerous to world order and a threat to the very notion that we control our government and not the other way around.

It’s time for the Democrats to put up or shut up, because we cannot afford a weak opposition to the barbarously ignorant and insane Trump administration.


Follow James on Twitter @JamboSchlarmbo.



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About James Schlarmann 1463 Articles
Comedian, writer, founding contributor of The Political Garbage Chute, holder of zero world records or lifetime achievement awards.
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