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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

Uncompassionate conservatism

Just when you think Senate Republicans cannot stoop lower, they prove you wrong.

The Lunatic Right, no doubt seeing United Nations black helicopters flying over the Capitol Dome, cast what may be the single most shameful vote ever recorded in the Senate, voting down a treaty that would ban discrimination against people with disabilities.

Why? The measure, modeled after the Americans with Disabilities Act, might lead to more abortions.

No one, not even chief conspiratorialist Rick Santorum, was willing to utter than outright. Instead it fell to Arizona's John Kyl to offer this slap at the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
“Just as with many treaties before this one, the CRPD would offer cover to regimes that have no intention of actually helping their citizens, while needlessly tying the hands of countries like the United States that have actually made great strides in this area,” Kyl said in a floor speech.
This vote was egregious, even by Senate standards, where 41 votes can block someone from saying Gesundheit after a sneeze.

The treaty garnered 61 votes, five short of the two-thirds majority needed to pass a treaty. Even the presence of Bob Dole, a disabled World War II vet now 89 and using a wheelchair after a recent hospitalization, could not melt the icy hearts of his former colleagues.

Clearly the mere whisper of the UN sets the right off like so wolves howling at the moon. But to reject a treaty based on a model created by former President George H.W. Bush, and negotiated by his son George W. Bush is the apex of idiocy.

Even John McCain, R-Grumpy Old Man, dropped his recent belligerence to stand with his disabled brothers and sisters. And a tip of the hat to the Republicans, including Scott Brown, who did not join in this shameful act.

Once upon a time in Washington, Dole, with his sharp dry wit and a willingness to say what's on his mind, was viewed as the angry Republican. The Man from Kansas is a cuddly teddy bear in comparison to the hard-hearted zealots who now wear the title Republican.

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