The U.S. Senate was once home to some of the most eloquent speakers, finest political minds, articulate debaters, and renowned national leaders and opinion-makers in the country.
Today, the U.S. Senate is a laughingstock.
Senate Intelligence Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) is predicting the Senate will grant retroactive immunity to telecommunications companies as Congress takes up reauthorization of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). . .
"I think we will prevail," Rockefeller said on Wednesday, adding that he hoped the Senate will finish the bill by next week. The FISA legislation expires in February, and both President Bush and GOP congressional leaders have demanded new legislation be in place by that time.
"It's a pretty bad idea to appear cocky," Rockefeller noted. "I am not pessimistic."
So, even though the chamber is controlled by Democrats, the fact that "both President Bush and GOP congressional leaders have demanded new legislation be in place by that time" means that Rockefeller and his Democratic colleagues must hasten to satisfy these demands and surrender whatever principles or interests they were elected to represent in order to ensure the Republican meanies won't say bad things about them...for a few minutes.
Yes, as Tim Tagaris notes at Open Left, our U.S. Senate, and its Majority Leader, who is finally taking a stand against automatic filibusters, albeit against those from his own party, are "A never ending reservoir of inspiration.."