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Away From Home

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Frist refuses to fund troops, supports torture

This would be completely unbelievable if it weren't true:

Simply amazing. In the face of a series of amendments by Republican Senators McCain, Warner and Graham that would have instituted new rules against torture, as well as other Republican-backed attempts to strengthen veterans benefits and delay base closures until after the Iraq War, Bill Frist has simply pulled the entire $450 billion defense bill from the Senate floor. Funding the troops now won't be reconsidered until after the summer recess.

[Emphasis mine.]

So what did Frist decide to debate instead? A bill to shield gun manufacturers from lawsuits, on the absurd reasoning that it supports the troops:

And linking the bill to the war in Iraq, Frist said that Beretta, the manufacturer of pistols to U.S. forces in Iraq, warned that it may go bankrupt if the lawsuits are not stopped.

"These frivolous suits threaten a domestic industry that is critical to our national defense," Frist said. "Given the profusion of litigation, the Department of Defense faces the very real prospect of outsourcing sidearms for our soldiers to foreign manufacturers."

I'm trying to cut down on the "Republicans are flaming idiots" posts, but this is just too much. Is Frist really saying that ensuring that Beretta can continue to make guns is more important than ensuring that the Army can buy the freaking guns in the first place?

"Be happy, Private Smith, there are guns on the market! Too bad the Army can't afford to buy any, but at least they're there! Aren't they all shiny and pretty?"

This is an appalling example of the Bush Administration and its Congressional monkeys being absolutely scared to death of debate. By pulling this bill, they refused to even talk about whether veterans have sufficient benefits, whether the military needs those bases in order to win the war, and whether torture is a good thing. That's right, folks -- they wouldn't even allow debate on whether we should have rules against torture. That tells me that not only do they support torture, but they support it completely closed-mindedly.

The Republican Party supports: torture, corporate protectionism.
The Republican Party opposes: funding soldiers and veterans, open debate.

If the people in charge of this country really consider this to be "supporting our troops," then may God be with those poor soldiers, since the Republicans obviously aren't.


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