Republicans Hate the Armed Forces
Democrats Forget to Read the Constitution...
By Brad Friedman on 9/25/2007, 9:56am PT  

Let's play Republican-like politics.

Turns out, some 50 (mostly Republican) members of the Senate are in favor of attacking "the honor, integrity, and patriotism" of those who have served honorably in the U.S. Armed Forces.

We knew that already, and not only from the Republican filibuster of a bill that would have given members of the U.S. Armed Forces in Iraq as much time off as they were forced into serving in the field.

But a less-discussed vote in the Senate last week underscored just how much Republicans despise honorably serving members of our military, and how impotent Democrats seem to be at exploiting that fact...

As the ridiculous sense of the Senate resolution was passed last week, to condemn the use of free speech by, far less reported was the fact that Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) had offered her own version of the amendment in order to "strongly condemn attacks on the honor, integrity, and patriotism of any individual who is currently serving or has served honorably in the United States Armed Forces, by any person or organization."

Boxer's amendment would have condemned the MoveOn ad questioning whether Gen. David Petraeus could be described as "General Betray Us?" even though it didn't attack his patriotism, as the Republicanist-invented narrative would lead you to believe.

But her amendment also would have condemned [PDF] 2002 attacks on "a Senator from Georgia who is a Vietnam veteran, triple amputee, and the recipient of a Silver Star and Bronze Star, had his courage and patriotism attacked in an advertisement in which he was visually linked to Osama bin Laden and Saddam Hussein" (Max Cleland) and 2004 attacks on "a Senator from Massachusetts who is a Vietnam veteran and the recipient of a Silver Star, Bronze Star with Combat V, and three Purple Hearts, was personally attacked and accused of dishonoring his country" (John Kerry).

Alas, her amendment only received 50 votes, so it failed in the Senate where it was courteously agreed that 60 votes were needed to pass such a resolution.

So, clearly, by their own rules of the game, the near-entirety of the Republican Senate hates the American armed forces.

Of course, both Boxer's amendment which failed, and John Cornyn's (R-TX) version which passed --- "thanks to 22 Democratic clowns joining a Republican circus," as Jeff Cohen aptly categorized the embarrassment --- were ridiculous.

Jane Hamsher points out that only Russ Feingold (D-WI) got it right on both counts by voting "no" to both embarrassing amendments.

She underscored, in appropriately bold letters, the much bigger picture: "The Senators who condemned MoveOn do not seem to realize that it's their job to protect free speech, not tell people how and when to exercise it."

In the meantime, surprise surprise, after all the Fox "News"/Republican-concocted bluster, it turns out that one of the first to use the "betray us" "slur" was actually draft dodger Rush Limbaugh, who described sitting Senator, and distinguished Vietnam War veteran, Sen. Chuck Hagel (R-NE), as "Senator Betrayus" back in January.

Lest we limit our disdain to the members of the Senate, however. Watch David Schuster expose a clueless Tennessee Republican hypocrite (and apparent U.S. Armed Services hater) from the House, leading him to the stammering Congresswoman: "When was the last time a New York Times ad ever killed someone?"

By and large, we've avoided the phony "controversy" here, because, unlike the mainstream media and the Democrats, we're disinclined to throw ourselves into Republican brier patches.

When will Democrats ever learn to avoid the same? Don't hold your breath.