Two Republican Senators Rebuke Trump For His Attacks On The Press

Two Republicans spoke out today against the President's war on the news media, but don't expect their colleagues to follow suit.

Trump Burning Constitution

Arizona Senators John McCain and Jeff Flake both spoke out today to rebuke President Trump for his attacks on the press:

WASHINGTON — Senator Jeff Flake, Republican of Arizona, took to the Senate floor on Wednesday to castigate President Trump for his “assaults” on American media and to compare the president’s words to those of a former Soviet dictator who slaughtered millions of his own citizens in a reign of terror.

“It is a testament to the condition of our democracy that our own president uses words infamously spoken by Joseph Stalin to describe his enemies,” Mr. Flake said, referring to the former Soviet dictator who regularly used the phrase, “enemy of the people,” which Mr. Trump has borrowed.

“When a figure in power reflexively calls any press that doesn’t suit him ‘fake news,’ it is that person who should be the figure of suspicion, not the press,” Mr. Flake said.

Mr. Flake had promised to speak out against Mr. Trump’s “reckless, outrageous and undignified” behavior when he announced in October that he would retire at the end of the year. True to his word, Mr. Flake delivered his remarks on the day the president had said he would issue “Fake News Awards,” to “the most corrupt & biased of the Mainstream Media.”

As of late morning on Wednesday, there was nothing on the president’s public schedule for such an event. Mr. Trump had initially scheduled these awards for earlier this month, but announced in a Twitter post that they would be ]postponed.

Mr. Flake and the president have not disguised their dislike of one another. Mr. Flake has been a target of the president’s tweets and has written a book denouncing Mr. Trump. He is among a small group of Republican senators that has criticized the president, with others including Bob Corker of Tennessee, who is also retiring, and John McCain of Arizona, who is battling an aggressive form of brain cancer.

In an opinion piece in The Washington Post on Tuesday, Mr. McCain joined his fellow Arizonan in calling for the president to stop attacking the news media, and he encouraged Congress to embrace a free press in ways Mr. Trump won’t.

“We cannot afford to abdicate America’s longstanding role as the defender of human rights and democratic principles throughout the world. Without strong leadership in the White House, Congress must commit to protecting independent journalism, preserving an open and free media environment, and defending the fundamental right to freedom of opinion and expression,” Mr. McCain wrote.

You can read the transcript of Flake’s speech on the Senate floor at the link, or watch the video below:

In his Op-Ed, meanwhile, Senator McCain notes that the President’s attacks on the media have coincided with a seeming increase in restrictions on press freedom across the globe:

According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, 2017 was one of the most dangerous years to be a journalist. Last year, the organization documented 262 cases of journalists being imprisoned for their work. Reporters around the world face intimidation, threats of violence, harassment, persecution and sometimes even death as governments resort to brutal censorship to silence the truth.

The committee’s report revealed a bleak global climate for press freedom, as more governments seek to control access to information and limit freedom of opinion and expression. They do this not only by arresting journalists but also by fostering distrust of media coverage and accusing reporters of undermining national security and pride. Governments dub the press the “enemy of the people,” weaken or eliminate their independence, and exploit the lack of serious scrutiny to encroach on individual liberties and freedoms.

This assault on journalism and free speech proceeds apace in places such as RussiaTurkeyChina, Egypt, Venezuela and many others. Yet even more troubling is the growing number of attacks on press freedom in traditionally free and open societies, where censorship in the name of national security is becoming more common. Britain passed a surveillance law that experts warn chills free speech, and countries from France to Germany are looking to do the same. In Malta, a prominent journalist was brutally murdered in October after uncovering systemic government corruption. In Poland, an independent news outlet was fined (later rescinded) nearly half a million dollars for broadcasting images of an anti-government protest.

Unfortunately, the Trump administration’s attitude toward such behavior has been inconsistent at best and hypocritical at worst.  While administration officials often condemn violence against reporters abroad, Trump continues his unrelenting attacks on the integrity of American journalists and news outlets. This has provided cover for repressive regimes to follow suit. The phrase “fake news” — granted legitimacy by an American president — is being used by autocrats to silence reporters, undermine political opponents, stave off media scrutiny and mislead citizens. CPJ documented 21 cases in 2017 in which journalists were jailed on “fake news” charges.

Trump’s attempts to undermine the free press also make it more difficult to hold repressive governments accountable. For decades, dissidents and human rights advocates have relied on independent investigations into government corruption to further their fight for freedom. But constant cries of “fake news” undercut this type of reporting and strip activists of one of their most powerful tools of dissent.

Trump’s war on the news media isn’t new, of course, and it began long before he became President of the United States. From the earliest days of his campaign, Trump used his speeches to attack the reporters who were covering the campaign and the news networks that were airing his speeches. More than once he would make the false claim that networks such as CNN had turned off their cameras and were not airing the speech even as it was being aired live on CNN, MSNBC, and Fox News Channel at the same time. He often repeatedly referred to the media in general and specific reporters in derogatory ways, accused them of hating America, and encouraged the crowd to turn on the reporters and camera crews that were covering the speech. On more than one occasion, this was followed by the pro-Trump crowd shouting vile epithets and threats at individual reporters to the point that they would need to be escorted out of the venue by local law enforcement or a member of the Secret Service for their own safety. During the campaign, Trump banned reporters from two publications, The Des Moines Register and The Washington Post, from receiving press passes to cover events and speeches and then go on to accuse them of trying to censor his message to the voters because they weren’t there to cover it. On another occasion, he had Univision anchor Jorge Ramos physically removed from a press conference when he asked a question about Trump’s position on immigration. Later during the campaign, Trump suggested that the nation strengthen its libel laws in ways that would clearly violate the First Amendment. This rhetoric continued throughout Trump’s campaign right up until Election Day in 2016.

After taking office, Trump’s attacks on the media continued and took on a more sinister tone considering the fact that he was at that point President of the United States. Less than a month after taking office, for example, Trump called the news media the “enemy of the people” for the first time, a phrase he returned to several times over the past year. Over the summer, one of his close advisers suggested that the media should be criminally charged for publishing leaked information even when that information isn’t classified. During a campaign rally style speech in Arizona in August, Trump upped his rhetoric by referring to members of the media as “sick people” who “don’t like our country,” and are “trying to take away our history and our heritage.” In October, he took to Twitter to threaten NBC with unspecified government action including pulling their broadcast license notwithstanding the fact that broadcast licenses are issued to individual stations, not networks, and that the FCC has no similar licensing requirement for cable networks such as MSNBC. Most recently, the President directed his private attorneys to send a “cease and desist” letter to the author and publisher of a book critical of the Trump White House and once again brought up the possibility of strengthening the nation’s libel laws in response to the negative coverage his Administration was receiving.

As I’ve said before, Trump’s rhetoric has crossed a line and there’s only one right side to be on:

These are the words of an authoritarian dictator, not the words of the leader of a republic with a Constitution where freedom of speech and of the press are not only enshrined in our Constitution but are also the very lifeblood of American democracy. The fact that it has been reported that the Trump Administration had multiple contacts with Russia during the campaign is most certainly real news, especially in light of what we already know about Russian hacking and apparent efforts to influence the election itself apparently in Trump’s favor. At the very least, these allegations need to be investigated both by law enforcement and by Congress in a fair and efficient manner.  If it weren’t for someone reporting this, we wouldn’t know about it. Just like if it weren’t for reporters we wouldn’t have known about Watergate, or Iran-Contra, or the reports that Hillary Clinton was taking the extraordinary step of using a private email server while Secretary of State. All of these stories were broken first by what the so-called President is calling the “fake” news media.”  This is why I agree with Thomas Jefferson. Given the choice between government without newspapers and newspapers without government, I will choose the latter. In reality, of course, we don’t want to live in either a world where there is no government or one where there are no newspapers (i.e., news media). They are both essential to the survival of a free society, but as long as we have government, we need a free and independent media that isn’t being intimidated by a wannabe dictator in the White House. There are two sides in this war between Trump and the media, but only one of them is the right side.

In that respect, it is good to see at least two Republicans on Capitol Hill willing to say what their colleagues will not. One hopes that others will follow but, quite frankly, I’m not optimistic.

Update: This post was updated to include the link to the text of Senator Flake’s speech and the  embedded video, both of which were inadvertently omitted at the time the post was published.

FILED UNDER: Congress, Donald Trump, Politicians, 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 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020.

Comments

  1. Franklin says:

    It would be nice if it wasn’t a retiring Republican.

  2. CSK says:

    Sarah Huckabee Sanders says that today’s promised Fake News Awards are only “a potential event.”

  3. @CSK:

    Sarah Huckabee Sanders says that today’s promised Fake News Awards are only “a potential event.”

    Meaning they aren’t going to happen.

  4. James Pearce says:

    It’s an absolute shame that the only people willing to sacrifice their careers and make these speeches are Republicans, while the Democrats vote to reauthorize FISA for Trump’s security apparatus.

  5. @Franklin:

    True, but it’s better than nothing for the time being.

  6. CSK says:

    @Doug Mataconis:

    Somebody better tell Infowars TV. They’re all geared up to televise them.

  7. MarkedMan says:

    @James Pearce: Really? No Democrats have called Trump out on these issues? That’s the best ya got?

    What’s next? A reminder that Abraham Lincoln was a Republican?

  8. SenyorDave says:

    @James Pearce: The vote to cut off debate and kill any privacy amendments passed 60 to 38, with 18 Democrats voting in favor, which means 42 Republicans voting in favor. But two Republicans are heroes? For opposing Trump publicly in statements (but still supporting almost 100% of his agenda). Flake saw the handwriting on the wall and only then spoke out against Trump.

  9. gVOR08 says:

    @CSK:

    Sarah Huckabee Sanders says that today’s promised Fake News Awards are only “a potential event.”

    All they have to do is make up some BS about the stories and press organizations they don’t like. It’s not like they have to do research or coordinate schedules or anything. This is completely under their control. As someone said, this is like your six year old daughter saying she has to delay her pretend tea party.

  10. gVOR08 says:

    @James Pearce:

    willing to sacrifice their careers

    Flake realized he can’t survive a primary, or a general. McCain’s health, sadly, will almost certainly make this his last term. It’s admirable that they made these statements, but it’s not like they decided to sacrifice their careers to do it. And Flake may be trying to set up a run for prez in ’20 as the anti-Trump. (Take a number.)

  11. gVOR08 says:

    As far as I am aware, so far Trump’s attacks on the press have been rhetorical, not substantive. Were he to make a substantive attack, say trying to pull licenses, the press might be able to defend themselves in court without the help of the (imaginary) Constitution Police. But does that matter? FOX is already on their side, as is Limbaugh. The WSJ was always Republican and is now owned by Murdoch. Sinclair owns a lot of broadcast stations. There is a rot at the heart of the NYT. I don’t know if it’s beat sweetening on a massive scale, peer pressure from the cocktail circuit, a self image as Olympians above the fray, or what, but they did as much or more to elect Trump than Comey or the Russians. And they continue to be reluctant to call BS. We’re half way to Republican Party dominated media already.

    And if the billionaire boys club start buying news media, there’s nothing legally we can do about it. Except maybe get real about anti-trust, but with Rs in control, that won’t happen.

  12. James Pearce says:

    @MarkedMan:

    Really? No Democrats have called Trump out on these issues? That’s the best ya got?

    Who’s the Democrat? Cory Booker?

    @SenyorDave:

    The vote to cut off debate and kill any privacy amendments passed 60 to 38, with 18 Democrats voting in favor, which means 42 Republicans voting in favor. But two Republicans are heroes?

    Let me put it this way. Jeff Flake gets credit when he crosses the aisles to oppose Trump. The Dems want that credit? Cross the aisle to oppose Trump, not give him warrantless spying powers.

    @gVOR08:

    Flake realized he can’t survive a primary, or a general.

    Right, because of his principled opposition to Trump. Meanwhile, all the Dems know they’re going to comfortably cruise to re-election, opposition –principled or not– not needed.

  13. Sleeping Dog says:

    @Franklin:

    Yup, the only Repugs Congress Critters that will stand up to Trump are dying or retiring.

  14. CSK says:

    Well, John Kelly is either on the verge of quitting or getting bounced. He told the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and other Democrats today that Trump’s campaign promises about the border wall were “uninformed.”

    It’s 6:45 p.m., so we can safely assume that Trump is in bed with his bag of cheeseburgers and fries. Is he choking on a mouthful of quarter-pounder as he listens to this?

  15. al-Ameda says:

    @James Pearce:
    Actually I like Flake, he’s not on the crazy bus.

    But really, although he’s appalled by Trump as a person he votes with Trump nearly 100% of the time. Crappy cabinet appointments like DeVos, Carson, Pruitt? No problem, “Yes,” presumably because he feels that the president should get the cabinet he wants, never mind that DeVos has no interest in advancing public education, or that Pruitt at EPA is not interested in environmental protections. But what the heck.

    Is he a hero? Nope. However he is an okay guy who is saying a few things that need to be said as he goes out the door.

  16. James Pearce says:

    @al-Ameda:

    But really, although he’s appalled by Trump as a person he votes with Trump nearly 100% of the time.

    Well, yeah, he’s a Republican, not a liberal Democrat. I’m sure he’d prefer to remain in the Senate, voting for the Republican position on everything. I would guess, too, that he hopes his replacement is also a stalwart Republican, voting with Trump nearly 100% of the time too.

    The point isn’t that he’s a “good” Republican. The point is that he’s better at opposing the president than Democrats are. That may be a tiresome point coming from me, but is it not true?

  17. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @gVOR08:

    And Flake may be trying to set up a run for prez in ’20 as the anti-Trump. (Take a number.)

    So far, I don’t see any evidence that the GOP base is in the market for an “anti-Trump,” but 2019 is still a ways away.

  18. MarkedMan says:

    @James Pearce: No. That’s not true.

  19. gVOR08 says:

    @Just ‘nutha ig’nint cracker:

    So far, I don’t see any evidence that the GOP base is in the market for an “anti-Trump,” but 2019 is still a ways away.

    You know that, and I know that. I’m not sure Flake and Kasich and Romney know that.

  20. Davebo says:

    @James Pearce:

    You’ve picked out FISA (how Greenwaldian of you) but you know there have been other votes.

    Senate confirmations. ACA repeal. Tax “Reform”.

    I’m not wild about the FISA vote but also not positive it should have been voted down.

    Still, cherry picking a single vote and proclaiming that those NEOLIBS! have sold out America is a pretty pathetic move for one who at least seems to have a decent vocabulary.

    Will you be phoning it in from the sidelines through the midterms or do you plan to stick with it through CREEP?

  21. gVOR08 says:

    @gVOR08:

    There is a rot at the heart of the NYT. I don’t know if it’s beat sweetening on a massive scale, peer pressure from the cocktail circuit, a self image as Olympians above the fray, or what, but they did as much or more to elect Trump than Comey or the Russians. And they continue to be reluctant to call BS.

    OMG. A couple hours ago they published fifteen letters from Trump supporters. They offer no explanation for why these fifteen. OK, there is an argument for presenting all viewpoints. But are they unaware that since the election we’re up to our eyebrows in this stuff. I don’t need fifteen letters. I live with these people, I work with these people, I’m related to these people, I like these people. But I’m tired of hearing about these people. And what is the point to exposing these people to the pushback they’re going to get?

  22. Bruce Henry says:
  23. Kathy says:

    Much Trump apologia lately heralds the fact that nothing terrible has happened since Trump’s inauguration.One can take strong issue with that claim, of course, but it misses the point that Trump has already damaged and weakened US alliances, US leadership, and the free press.

    If we don’t have outright censorship now it’s because Trump is ignorant of law and policy, superbly incompetent, and because he needs what he calls “fake news” to rile up his base. But he’s sowing the seeds of mistrust and hostility towards a free press, that some future president could take advantage of in order to establish censorship or even outright state control of the press.

  24. Facebones says:

    @gVOR08:

    But are they unaware that since the election we’re up to our eyebrows in this stuff.

    Much of it coming from the NY Times, with there endless safaris to REAL AMURICA to find rural white people to talk to and explain how Trump isn’t racist.

    But remember! if we all don’t go buy a subscription, then democracy perishes!!!

  25. Not the IT Dept. says:

    Flake mouths off but votes in-line as he’s supposed to. Fewer politicians have ever lived up to their names more successfully.

    As for McCain, he’s dying and while we’re again in one of those periods where he’s considered a giant among men, let’s remember that his maverickiness almost always consisted of talking a big game and walking a small one. His temper sometimes makes him unpredictable so he gets credit for heroism when he votes the way McConnell doesn’t want, but history will be tepid about the man.

  26. James Pearce says:

    @Davebo:

    Still, cherry picking a single vote and proclaiming that those NEOLIBS! have sold out America is a pretty pathetic move for one who at least seems to have a decent vocabulary.

    There’s cherry-picking and then there’s a sustained, consistent –if tiresome– critique of Democratic priorities and capabilities in the era of Trump.

    @MarkedMan:

    That’s not true.

    You sure? Nancy Pelosi and Chuck “He Likes Me” Schumer still think they can cut a deal with Trump. (Narrator: They can’t.) They’re not yet to the point where they will team up with disaffected Republicans to oppose Trump’s agenda. If they were, Jeff Flake would become an ally.

    But he’s leaving Congress entirely because no one has his back, not the moderates, not the “resistance,” and certainly not his Democratic colleagues in Congress.

  27. KM says:

    @James Pearce:

    It’s an absolute shame that the only people willing to sacrifice their careers and make these speeches are Republicans

    WTF kind of logic is this? A non-Republican wouldn’t be risking their careers challenging Trump BECAUSE they’re in the opposite party and are expected to oppose him! It’s career enhancing to the party not in power to complain about an unpopular POTUS with their base, not destroying. How could it possibly kill the career of a Dem to tell off Trump at this point?

    My God James, I know you’re not happy unless you’re complaining about liberals not living up to your standards but this is bizarre even for you. A singular Grand Gesture from someone on their way out (otherwise known as the “F-U, I’m Leaving!!” every employee wishes they could give) is rather pointless compared to basic and consistent resistance to an agenda. I’m starting to think you’re not going to be satisfied until liberals start lighting themselves on fire to protest Trump like the monks did…. and then you’d complain the smoke was distracting from the brave retiring Republican giving his impassioned speech and the Dems just aren’t doing enough.

  28. James Pearce says:

    @KM:

    I’m starting to think you’re not going to be satisfied until liberals start lighting themselves on fire to protest Trump like the monks did….

    You may be right, because I read this sentence and thought, “That’s exactly what we need! Liberals self-immolating. I mean, it won’t affect Trump at all, but, hey….fewer unhelpful liberals.”

    Always look at the bright side of life.

    (A few years ago, KM, Democrats in Colorado’s statehouse passed some gun control measures. Several of them were unseated in a recall election, but the gun control measures still stand. Imagine what we would have if the Democrats we send to DC were as dedicated to policy as they are to their careers.)

  29. wr says:

    @James Pearce: “Right, because of his principled opposition to Trump.”

    Which consists entirely of noble, self-aggrandizing speeches, followed by voting for every bill and every nominee Trump puts forward.

    I guess in Pearce world that passes for principle

  30. wr says:

    @James Pearce: “They’re not yet to the point where they will team up with disaffected Republicans to oppose Trump’s agenda. If they were, Jeff Flake would become an ally.”

    Wait — Jeff Flake votes for everything Trump wants because the Dems don’t want him to vote with them?

    If Jeff Flake wants to oppose Trump’s agenda, all he has to do is oppose Trump’s agenda. The Senate is 51-49 Republicans. If Flake were to declare himself an independent and caucus with the Dems, it’s a tie, and Repubs have to start sharing power.

    But in your mind, the most eeeevil people in the world — Chuck and Nancy — would never want that because… well, because you like to bash Democrats.

  31. KM says:

    @James Pearce:

    Imagine what we would have if the Democrats we send to DC were as dedicated to policy as they are to their careers

    Question: what was the composition of the legislature that passed that policy? You note they paid a price but neglect to point out if they had the power and votes to do so at the time. Unless they were in the minority on all 3 branches like Dems are currently, it’s a false comparison.

    Where the Dems in power when that happened?

  32. James Pearce says:

    @wr:

    Which consists entirely of noble, self-aggrandizing speeches, followed by voting for every bill and every nominee Trump puts forward.

    Why the obsession with voting for Trump’s nominees? Is that the crime for which you cannot forgive Jeff Flake?

    Meanwhile, Kristen Gillibrand, whose arrows have only hit Democrats, voted against every single one of Trump’s nominees.

    Maybe it’s a mistake to be so superficial?

    Also:

    But in your mind, the most eeeevil people in the world — Chuck and Nancy —

    Chuck “He Likes Me” Schumer wants to eat Tide Pods.

  33. James Pearce says:

    @KM:

    what was the composition of the legislature that passed that policy?

    It doesn’t matter. Democrats who aren’t willing advance Democratic goals because they might lose their seats are NOT GOING TO HELP US.

  34. KM says:

    @James Pearce :

    Ah, I get it – you aren’t willing to distinguish between can’t and won’t when it comes to achieving your ideals.

    You want balls to the wall, screw the fact we’ve got no hope of passing this, we DEMAND you vote on our bill despite the fact we don’t have the vote aggressive approach to legislation. You really a Republican – that’s how they’ve been acting for the past decade and a half. It’s how our country got to be the way it is – people forgot governance is about compromise and picking your battles.

    This is not the Charge of the Light Brigade – there’s no point in pressing for an advantage you do not have. A dead solider might be a hero but they’re also one less asset in a future battle where they are needed. Dems are not afraid of losing their seats – hell, we’re WINNING special elections left and right. They’re just not stupid to try to push for full frontal when that would cost us more then just some seats. Democratic goals are still in play but if we don’t want the Republican agenda to curse us for the next few generations, we need to keep what we have.

    On the wall of my fencing club is a quote from Batman Begins: “You have sacrificed sure footing for a killing stroke.” Don’t push if you can’t follow up – don’t advance if you can’t commit to the attack and accept the consequences. We need to win in 2018 and whining people are worried about keeping seats if counter-productive at best.

    FYI: don’t bitch about Gillibrand being an “unhelpful” liberal when all you seem to do is shoot arrows at Dems as well. Glass houses, dude.

  35. James Pearce says:

    @KM:

    You want balls to the wall, screw the fact we’ve got no hope of passing this, we DEMAND you vote on our bill despite the fact we don’t have the vote aggressive approach to legislation.

    Damn straight. I want someone who is willing to scrape their knuckles on a bully’s teeth.

    Dems are not afraid of losing their seats – hell, we’re WINNING special elections left and right.

    Yeah, they are. That’s why they neglect half the country, where there’s risk, and focus on the coastal cities, where they have the numbers.

    don’t bitch about Gillibrand being an “unhelpful” liberal when all you seem to do is shoot arrows at Dems as well.

    Sigh. Not only am I not in congress like Gillibrand is, we do not work for the Democrats. They work for us.

    Never forget that.

  36. wr says:

    @James Pearce: “Why the obsession with voting for Trump’s nominees? Is that the crime for which you cannot forgive Jeff Flake?”

    It’s proof — along with voting for Trump’s preferred legislation — that Flake’s “opposition” consists of nothing but yapping. He’s the definition of an empty suit.

  37. Tyrell says:

    Let me say that I am against these continuing attacks on the press by the president. It is one thing for occasional quips, differing accounts, and questioning of some of the press’ accounts. It is another for these constant attacks.
    The press is certainly no longer what it once was. I think back to a time when we subscribed to a morning and evening paper, and several magazines ( ranging from Time, National Geographic to Hot Rod). I no longer have any subscriptions to the papers or the “slicks”. I grew up watching the evening news with Walter Conkrite, David Brinkley, Reasoner, Smith, Ed Murrow, and the amazing Charles Kuralt. Now it seems most network news programs are more into sensationalism, negativism, and berating their guests and each other. Can you imagine Kuralt hollering at guests? Professionalism is a thing of the past.
    I have gone to other news sources.

  38. James Pearce says:

    @wr:

    It’s proof — along with voting for Trump’s preferred legislation — that Flake’s “opposition” consists of nothing but yapping. He’s the definition of an empty suit.

    Other Trump-skeptic Republicans are watching how the Dems and their supporters treat Jeff Flake and they’re probably going to conclude it’s better to just shut the f up and let the president eat your lunch.

    We need allies, don’t we?

  39. wr says:

    @James Pearce: What is it these mean Democrats are doing to poor little Jeffy?

  40. James Pearce says:

    @wr:

    What is it these mean Democrats are doing to poor little Jeffy?

    Same thing they always do. Sit on their hands as more capable people do the heavy lifting.

  41. Teve tory says:

    @KM:

    You want balls to the wall, screw the fact we’ve got no hope of passing this, we DEMAND you vote on our bill despite the fact we don’t have the vote aggressive approach to legislation

    Tldr, he never understood the meaning of “pick your battles”