Pat Toomey: Republicans Opposed Background Checks Because Of Dislike Of Obama

Senator Pat Toomey is saying that some of his colleagues were led to oppose the Manchin/Toomey background checks bill for reasons that had less to do with the merits of the bill than what can only be called political spite:

Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) revealed that some members of his party opposed expanding background checks for gun sales recently because they didn’t want to “be seen helping the president.”

Two weeks ago, only three Republican senators voted for the bipartisan background checks amendment sponsored by Toomey and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), despite overwhelming popular support for such a measure.

“In the end it didn’t pass because we’re so politicized. There were some on my side who did not want to be seen helping the president do something he wanted to get done, just because the president wanted to do it,” Toomey admitted on Tuesday in an interview with Digital First Media editors in the offices of the Times Herald newspaper in Norristown, Pa.

The Times Herald noted that in “subsequent comments,” Toomey “tried to walk that remark part-way back by noting he meant to say Republicans across the nation in general, not just those in the Senate.”

In the end, I’m not sure it matters if Toomey was referring to his Senate colleagues or Republicans as a whole. He’s simply stating a truth about the Republican Party that has existed since January 2009.

FILED UNDER: Barack Obama, Congress, Guns and Gun Control, Politicians, Quick Takes, US Politics
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Dana says:

    Oh you mean like when the Democrats want to pass a bill to help the president or when they did the same thing to Bush? Just wondering…

  2. michael reynolds says:

    @Dana:
    Care to name a specific? I doubt you do.

  3. Mark Ivey says:

    Senator Pat Toomey is pretty accurate on this..

  4. legion says:

    @Dana: Really? When would that be? When they were bullied into going along with Bush’s plan to invade Iraq because the people who are opposing Obama for purely childish reasons now are the exact same people who said a decade ago that opposing the President was exactly the same as treason?

    The modern Republican party is composed pretty much entirely of irresponsible, immature children. I don’t agree with every single thing Obama or the Democratic party does, but there is literally _no_ level of responsibility I would trust a Republican with.

  5. Ben says:

    In other words, they’re a bunch of 7-year-olds. And it’s another Republican who’s actually saying it this time. Oy vey.

  6. Gustopher says:

    So, the GOP aren’t really complete dicks, they just put their party ahead of their country?

    Is that what Toomey is trying to say?

    I mean, I suspected it for years, and I knew it from McCain’s campaign on (you don’t need a slogan of “Country First” unless you really aren’t putting country first — it’s like someone saying “trust me”, “I’m a nice guy”, or “I’m trying to be fair”).

  7. JKB says:

    Well, that’s politics. Getting the wrong people, which is generally all in elected office, to do the right thing even if they do it for the wrong reason.

    But for others, who could read the bill and see the “loop holes” it created to permit exactly what Manchin and Toomey claimed it prohibited, well, it’s that darn critical thinking.

  8. Largebill says:

    Pretty disappointing to see this nonsense from Toomey. I supported him years ago because I thought he’d be a huge improvement over Specter. However, acting like a Dem is garbage. It is a common DEM mistake to be unable to accept that anyone could possibly disagree with them on policy so they question the motives of others. Toomey needs to grow up and realize they might actually disagree with his proposed legislation.

  9. wr says:

    @Largebill: “It is a common DEM mistake to be unable to accept that anyone could possibly disagree with them on policy so they question the motives of others. Toomey needs to grow up and realize they might actually disagree with his proposed legislation. ”

    Right. Except, of course, Toomey is basing this on actually having talked to the Republicans in question and having a chance to discover their actual reasons. As opposed to some yutz on the internet who is simply making stuff up.

  10. rudderpedals says:

    So the paragon of the business wing who made a living out of bludgeoning good people with the club for growth turned out to be a warm and squishy crypto lefty?

  11. Tony W says:

    It sounds to me as if the R’s are giving Obama way too much power. All the president has to do is some reverse-ninja psychology in a press conference on pending legislation and they won’t know which way to vote.

  12. Largebill says:

    @wr: Except no where in the article does it say that his senate colleagues said that to him. No, he is claiming that based on his belief that his legislation is just oh so good that no one could oppose it except for bad reasons. It’s easier for him to impugn the motives of others than to actually admit they voted against it because they either have valid objections or their constituents were strongly opposed.

  13. stonetools says:

    @Largebill:

    It seems clear that Toomey was indeed talking about his Senate colleagues, at least at first. This is yet another nail in the coffin of the myth of “reasonable bipartisanism, where men of goodwill are supposed to vote across party lines based purely on the merits of the bill.
    We should understand that there is only one way that this President will get legislation passed-and it won’t be by “reasonable bipartisanism” or “leadership”. It will be by changing Congress itself , in 2014.

  14. wr says:

    @Largebill: “Except no where in the article does it say that his senate colleagues said that to him. No, he is claiming that based on his belief that his legislation is just oh so good that no one could oppose it except for bad reasons. ”

    Of course. Because there’s no way that this Republlican senator who was trying to get his bill passed would have actually talked to his colleagues. So when he describes what other Republican senators based their decision on, we should absolutely assume that he’s just guessing about their motivations and take as gospel the word of some anonymous guy on the internet who apparently has psychic powers.

  15. Deserttrek says:

    sorry pat but it has nothing to do with barry boy it has to do with the will of the People. The people did not want any new laws nor are any needed. feeding the liberal media bullsh*t beast is not what republicans were voted into office to do.

    as far as passing barry boy’s legislation, NO. his programs have destroyed enough already

  16. legion says:

    @Deserttrek:

    The people did not want any new laws nor are any needed.

    ?? Except for the 90%+ that wanted the gun laws passed, I suppose.

  17. TheColourfield says:

    What is it about guns that brings the crazies to this site ? Pat Toomey, Club for Growth paragon, is apparently a RINO now.

  18. Tony W says:

    @Deserttrek:

    his programs have destroyed enough already

    Name one thing the president’s programs have “destroyed”. Be specific for extra credit.

  19. labman57 says:

    This is yet another example of a key aspect of the GOP mindset ever since Obama was first elected as POTUS — political contrarianism.

    If Obama is for “it“, then Republicans will be against “it“, no matter what “it” happens to be — even if “it” is a program or policy position that they would normally support and/or is strongly favored by their constituents.

  20. Xenos says:

    @legion:

    Except for the 90%+ that wanted the gun laws passed, I suppose.

    Those people are just people, you see, and not to be confused with The People, who are the only People who count here. If people disagree with “The People”, then they are not really People, but just moochers and muslims and darkies on the plantation and lefties and such. If they wanted to be People, those people would have to think and vote like real People, instead of just people.

    Just thought I ought to clear that up for you.

  21. legion says:

    @Xenos: I knew I forgot to do that search-and-replace from “people” to “money”!