Franken Amendment, Republican Strategy, and the Failure of Governance

Earlier this week I posted an article from a guest author to my blog.  Since reading her post and doing some additional research, the issue has come to disgust me even more.  As I posted in a comment to her article, Politico stated that the Republicans had a strategic error in allowing the vote to go for a Roll Call rather than a voice vote.  I think this error is a blessing, for it lets the public know where elected representatives really stand.

The text of Senator Franken’s Amendment is as follows:

  • Sec. 8104. (a) None of the funds appropriated or otherwise made available by this Act may be used for any existing or new Federal contract if the contractor or a subcontractor at any tier requires that an employee or independent contractor, as a condition of employment, sign a contract that mandates that the employee or independent contractor performing work under the contract or subcontract resolve through arbitration any claim under title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 or any tort related to or arising out of sexual assault or harassment, including assault and battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress, false imprisonment, or negligent hiring, supervision, or retention.
  • (b) The prohibition in subsection (a) does not apply with respect to employment contracts that may not be enforced in a court of the United States.”

In interviews I have watched, those who voted against the Amendment (Franken Amdt. No. 2588), seem to be under the misguided idea that they have no responsibility to change the actions of Halliburton / KBR, or any other Government Contractor.  I have italicised Government contractor because of the first word – Government.  This means that our government, with our tax money, has selected these companies.  It means that they are beholden to the citizens of the US for their actions.  For any elected representative to state otherwise is absolutely ridiculous. 

In most business, I always like to ask myself the question, “How would you feel if it was yourself/family member/neighbor in this situation.”  I can guarantee you, that if it was the representative’s daughter who was gang raped, that there would be a witch hunt going on.  Instead, what we have, is the revealing of what these representatives really feel about the appropriate actions the government and its hired help should take towards your daughter, sister, wife, or neighbor. 

In the uproar’s aftermath, the great responses included such fallacy as this: ““This would be a major, fundamental change in U.S. labor law and I believe it would be very detrimental to employees to eliminate arbitration as an option,” Isakson said.”  (The Sun News)    I’ll convert this statement by Senator Isakson to english for the rest of us: “Allowing rape by US contractors is fine.” 

Before my anger at these Senators overrides the rest of my good judgement and I go overboard, I’ll present the good names, and states, of those who oppose allowing American citizens the chance to have their day in court against companies, funded by the US government, that allow these practices to go on:

Alexander (R-TN)
Barrasso (R-WY)
Bond (R-MO)
Brownback (R-KS)
Bunning (R-KY)
Burr (R-NC)
Chambliss (R-GA)
Coburn (R-OK)
Cochran (R-MS)
Corker (R-TN)
Cornyn (R-TX)
Crapo (R-ID)
DeMint (R-SC)
Ensign (R-NV)
Enzi (R-WY)
Graham (R-SC)
Gregg (R-NH)
Inhofe (R-OK)
Isakson (R-GA)
Johanns (R-NE)
Kyl (R-AZ)
McCain (R-AZ)
McConnell (R-KY)
Risch (R-ID)
Roberts (R-KS)
Sessions (R-AL)
Shelby (R-AL)
Thune (R-SD)
Vitter (R-LA)
Wicker (R-MS)

I have bolded Senator McCain’s name here for a specific reason.  He is one of the members of Congress that I used to respect the most.  However, I believe the Maverick has lost his steam, his drive, and his innate, fundamental sense of what is right and wrong.  Not only did he oppose Franken’s amendment, last year he also voted against the torture ban

My only question really at this point for the Republican Party is this – WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU?

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