Thursday, May 26, 2005

Shows What I Know
Fresh off my lamentation about insufficient votes to overturn Dubya's likely veto of the bill to lift the ban on Federal funding of stem cell research, the New York Times quotes Arlen Specter's (R-Pa) assertion that they do have the votes, after all. Specter, by all accounts still as feisty and hard-working as ever despite the daily brutality of his cancer treatment, expresses reluctance to engage in "veto threats," but the fact that the discussion is even occurring in the public eye speaks volumes.

To date, Duyba has famously (and proudly) withheld his veto power, and he definitely hasn't nixed any spending bills, so we might be on the verge of an important moment. His approval rating is at a stupendous low, with fully 60% of Americans saying that the country is on the wrong track. At the same time, 58% of Americans approve of medical research using embryonic stem cells. So what happens if Dubya finally dusts off his stamper to veto this, of all bills? Sure, he'll gratify his WTF Christian base, but at what cost? He certainly won't make himself appear more in touch with the citizenry.

Dubya's Social Security crusade is still in the crapper, his War in Iraq is still going poorly, the Bolton vote is still being delayed, and Dubya only managed to get his judicial appointments approved at the cost of humiliating his good friend Frist. If we throw in Dubya's pandering during the Schiavo debacle, then he's zero for five. Well, he did sign the bankruptcy bill, so I guess that's one way he demonstrated himself to be keeping in touch.

If he ever had a mandate, he has a really goofy way of leveraging it.

While I have you on the line--Americablog reports that Pennsylvania's other Senator, nominally an ardent opponent of stem cell research, has in fact accepted funding from corporations that engage in it. So what does Santorum object to, exactly? Not profits from stem cell research, apparently. And not abortion, either. At least, not until he started campaigning for Senator. Thanks to Media Matters for that last bit.

If you have a few minutes and you want a chuckle, try googling "Santorum" and check out the first link that comes up. Ask your parents first, if you're under 18.

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