a bird and a bottle


Veto Crazy

After waiting five years to exercise his first veto, President Bush is going veto crazy. Continuing in the backwards tradition of his first veto (of the stem cell bill), the President seems to only pick up his veto pen for laws that might actually do some good. Of course, there’s his veto the other day of the war spending bill. But that’s not it.

Cases in point: two current veto threats.

The first is Bush’s threatened (promised?) veto of the new hate crimes legislation. The bill would expand federal hate crimes protection to include gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, and disability. It’s headed for approval in Congress. But Bush has already got the cap off of his veto pen. Why, you might ask, would the President veto so common sense a bill? Here’s the reasoning:

The statement said state and local laws already covered the violence addressed in the legislation. “There has been no persuasive demonstration of any need to federalize such a potentially large range of violent crime enforcement,” the administration said.

It’s laughable, really. Apparently, this administration felt that abortion regulation — with the exception of its basic foundation, something generally left to the states — needed to be federalized. But providing added protection to citizens who are often part of “discrete and insular minorities”? Not so much.

Anyway. This brings me to veto #2. According to today’s NY Times, Bush has “warned’ of a veto over any legislation that would allow federal funding for “the destruction of human life.” Why the veto warning now? Because Congress is thinking about repealing the global gag rule, therefore allowing US funding of international organizations that discuss or provide abortions and ending US promotion of abstinence-or-die.

Of course, a White House mouthpiece said that this is not about veto power but about the president standing firmly behind his beliefs. Apparently the president’s conviction for protecting life ends at birth — at least if one is a woman, has a chronic illness like MS, is gay, or is trans. Excuse me while I go scratch out my eyes at the irony of all of this.

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9 Comments so far
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As Jon Stewart brilliantly pointed out – after reporting on the sex scandal which has resulted in the resignation of the administration’s top official in charge pushing an abstinence policy as a centerpiece of global AIDS prevention – everything this administration does turns out to be painfully ironic.

Comment by professorplum

Unfortunately the neo-con bell gongs loudly and frequently drowning out our tinker bell of rectitude beneath the clamor.

Comment by Swampcracker

The tinker bell of rectitude

I like that, Swampcracker. So what do we need to do to amp up our rectitude?

And yes, Plum, you are so right to point out this most recent scandal. the ironies are endless…and painful.

Comment by bean

Audience participation … on the count of three, clap your hands.

Comment by Swampcracker

Because Congress is thinking about repealing the global gag rule, therefore allowing US funding of international organizations that discuss or provide abortions and ending US promotion of abstinence-or-die.

It’s not even about funding abortions. The US hasn’t funded abortions anywhere since at least the Reagan administration. The rule change that Clinton decreed and that Pelosi wants to enact is that the US may fund organizations that offer abortion as an alternative as long as federal money doesn’t go toward the procedure itself. The global gag rule not only forbids sending federal money to discussions of abortion, but also cuts off entirely every organization that discusses abortion. So the difference between the Democrats and the Republicans is effectively that the Democrats want to fund contraception while the Republicans don’t.

Comment by Alon Levy

Going out with a bang GW is. He continues to show the world what an idiot he is by pandering to the ignorant and closed minded, but then they are the ones who put him there, almost. I remember lost votes.

Comment by goldenferi

[…] sexuality, activism, politics, law, news Last week, in a flurry of chest puffing, President Bush threatened to veto the hate crimes bill passed by the House and headed toward approval in the Senate. The bill, sponsored by Rep. John […]

Pingback by a bird and a bottle

[…] week, in a flurry of chest puffing and pounding, President Bush threatened to veto the hate crimes bill passed by the House and headed toward approval in the Senate. The bill, sponsored by Rep. John […]

Pingback by Feministe » Defining Hate Crimes Shouldn’t Be Tricky Business

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