Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Washington Oil Party

(a play on the idea that this is the GOP's version of the Boston Tea Party)

(Image courtesy of the U.S. Department of the Interior)

Rep. Rob Bishop (1st-District) prides himself on being a former history teacher in Box Elder County, a man of "family values." I used to think that family values was code for pro-life anti-gay-rights, and in Utah, a hint that you went on an LDS mission while your opponent has strayed from the faith (or never was a member in the first place). Now I am really confused.
Rep. Rob Bishop, R-Utah, has one son getting married next Tuesday and another leaving on an LDS mission the day after. So he had planned to take advantage of Congress' August recess to spend the week weeding and preparing his home for expected guests.
Instead, he now is flying back to Washington to join a GOP protest about taking that five-week vacation without first voting on GOP legislation designed to help lower the cost of oil.
"We will go on the House floor, and talk to whoever is there. We do not think it is right to go on vacation until we have dealt with this issue," he said Monday.
That's right, the same guy who voted 18 times during the past 90 days to adjourn the House, now wants a special session to vote on drilling offshore so we can save 1% when we fill up our tank in 2030. So was it a political stunt the first 18 times, or just the last two times when you held a slumber party on the House floor? Even the President, who wants offshore drilling badly, even Bush won't ask for a special session on off-shore drilling. But it is more important to be in Washington right now if you are a non-partisan get-things-done kind of guy...it's not like one of your sons is getting married or another son is going on a two-year mission. Sounds like some one is paying their dues to get in the good graces of their fellow party members.

Lee Davidson calls the stunts "spontaneous" protests, when anyone paying attention (especially somehow who getting paid to pay attention for his readers) would know that this was a coordinated effort between the White House, the McCain campaign, and the Republican leadership in Congress to harp on off-shore drilling, since the polling arguably shows the public might favor it.
"I was truly amazed at what I saw there. There was a unique feeling or spirit. You usually don't see that kind of energy on the floor. Usually, you are talking to a lot of empty chairs. But the floor was full, and the galleries were three-quarters full. All the tourists were responding plausibly for what we were doing," he said.
"Since even pre-Civil War times, I don't think anything this spontaneous and dramatic has happened before," he said.
Now maybe that bolded word is just a typo or mistranscription and Bishop actually said "positively"--Lord knows I have a pretty big glass house on the typo front--or maybe this was a Freudian slip.

In any event, as a history teacher, Bishop doesn't have to look that far back to see examples of political stunts, in fact, he can just look back to the past 18 votes he cast over the last 90 days.

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