Compromise Anatomy

by Eric M. Blake April 29th, 2013 | Conservative Considerations
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manchin usmcSo a major buzzword in American politics this past month has been “compromise”.  A few Conservative now-icons have been raising some eyebrows, lately — taking part in compromises that to some may seem “common-sense”, but in others causes a stir along the lines of, “What on Earth — are we witnessing a hero selling out?”

Okay.  Folks, these days, the last thing we need is to act perfectionist.  We do that, and we devote too much time to picking apart those on our side … and forget the real antagonists in our fight.  Still — there are times when people can go too far.  His Awesomeness, Chris Christie, is still going through a period of penance for giving Obama a tad too many dues during a most inopportune time in the 2012 campaign.  The question is … will we need a similar penance from Pat Toomey and— heaven forbid! — Marco Rubio?

Well — motives are always important.  Christie had to look bipartisan for the sake of his state.  And he was right when he complained how Congress has gotten nothing done, lately.  (He’d have done better to focus his aggression on Harry Reid than John Boehner, though.)  So …

Senator Toomey, as you probably know, teamed up with conservative Democrat Joe Manchin to basically take one of the Left’s big talking points off the table.  To wit: “Oh, so you’re against gun control?  You mean you don’t even want to extend background checks — help keep bad guys from legally getting guns?”

Toomey and Manchin, gun owners themselves, did not write that bill with the intention of selling out to the simpering, mucus-eyed demagogues of the “gun control” crowd.  These two are known for being honest men — they were both elected, remember, in the Tea Party surge of 2010.  Though Manchin (pictured) is a Democrat, he is an old-school Democrat from a bygone era — the era that vanished with the sudden surge of the Far Left underground in the Bush years.  And Toomey, lest we forget, was the “unelectable” Conservative who repeatedly warned us that Arlen Specter would be a most regrettable choice.

They wrote the bill with the best motives — to shove the Left’s most effective talking point off the table.  They did the wrong thing for the right reason.  I say “wrong”, because as others have pointed out, the “online sales” part in particular could well have resulted in a loophole for the federal government that, in time, would have had Orwellian implications.

Well, that bill was defeated — and some Leftists are now laughably shedding tears about the alleged unconstitutionality of the filibuster!  Perhaps a reversal of a Leftist talking point is in order: “Where were you when Bush suffered those filibuster threats?”  (And while we’re on the subject of the Constitution — take a good look at Article I, Section 5, which says “Each House shall determine the Rules of its Proceedings.”  And Section 7, the bill-voting process, does not demand simple majorities from the Senate.  Claiming the filibuster is unconstitutional is frankly laughable.  But I digress….)

Meanwhile — should Toomey be branded a traitor?  Not at all — he and Manchin want to address the complaints, and fix the bill’s problems.  Still, they’ll probably have to go through a penance of their own — a minor one.

Now for Marco Rubio, and his role in the “Gang of 8” in the new-and-improved Comprehensive Immigration Reform.  As Rush noted, the liberals on the “Democrat” half of the gang understandably cause concern.  But Rubio has repeatedly made it absolutely clear that he would not be satisfied unless and until the bill pushes for enforcement first — tough enforcement, at that.  And he’s right — the system we have now is effective “de facto amnesty”.  Still, he’d do well to take Conservative suggestions into account regarding regular reports by the border states on how they’re doing, enforcement-wise.

The thing is, whether this bill is good or not will be determined by which of the Eight rises as the dominant voice.  As of now, that looks like Rubio — but big Lefty Chuck Schumer has been making the rounds, as well.  Still, Schumer’s case consists of vague terms like “reasonable solution” and “compromise”— while Rubio has been providing the reports on the actual substance.  This makes me hold out hope — but anything could happen.

Still, Marco Rubio’s many things.  A sellout’s not one of them.

Stay practical, my friends.

(Photo: U.S. Marine Corps)

One Response to “Compromise Anatomy”
  1. Eric M. Blake says:

    A note: Pat Toomey is not involved in Manchin’s efforts to revive the background check bill. Perhaps he’s entering his “penance” period readily and eagerly.

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