Will Bush veto the border fence bill?

A mostly political Weblog.
Oct. 11 2006 4:51 PM

Will Bush Veto the Fence Bill?

He hasn't signed it yet.

(Continued from Page 15)

Phoniness, fecklessness, or a corrupt bargain? You make the call! I can't think of any other possibilities. Update: The New York Times reports

Because of reservations from Democrats and Republicans who favor the broader bill, Mr. Frist is having trouble rounding up enough votes for a showdown over the fence this week.

I'd tentatively file that under "fecklessness," especially given Frist's bravura last week. He could hold a press conference to shame Republicans as well as Dems into agreeing to a vote if he wanted to. (He might actually have more luck with the Dems--but their votes count too.) Plus, hasn't the Senate already agreed to cloture on the fence issue? Does Frist even need a supermajority?

**--The grin is at about 9:18 in this video. There's an ominous sigh too (when the fence question first comes up, at about 8:00). ...

More: An email from Stephen B. Smith:

As the Majority Leader's online communications coordinator, I can assure you that Senator Frist isn't "flaking out" and that he is committed to a cloture vote on the Secure Fence Act this week. 

In order to pass this legislation, a 60 vote supermajority in favor of cloture is needed.  And, unfortunately, we fear that Democrats may well attempt to obstruct the Secure Fence Act by denying it cloture.  If Democrats succeed in denying cloture to the legislation, then an up-or-down vote on the Secure Fence Act will be blocked, which is why Senator Frist said "hopefully what we'll be voting on the floor of the Senate this week."

As to your question "Plus, hasn't the Senate already agreed to cloture on the fence issue?", the answer is no.  Your link to Free Republic was for cloture on the motion to proceed to the legislation ... not cloture on the underlying legislation.

Thanks to Smith for the cloture clarification. But if Frist wants really cloture, it seems to me he has to campaign for it more publicly and vigorously. Many Democrats (and Republicans) will be happy to not vote on this issue, as long as their decision to not vote won't get a lot of attention. .. 

Hollow Kabuki or Deeply Meaningful Kabuki? Michelle Malkin is more skeptical of the fence bill  to begin with, calling it an "empty, election-season, unfunded ...gesture" and a "gimmick from Beltway Republicans who think they can appease pro-enforcement voters." She argues:

There are so many other immediate reforms that could have been adopted this year that would have strengthened immigration enforcement, closed deportation loopholes immediately, and provided true relief at the border.

I tend to think that, whether the GOP pols are cynical or sincere, the fence is way more than a gesture--and if it's a gesture, it will be a highly significant one, both in how it's interpreted south of the border (a sign of U.S. seriousness about immigration control) and by American politicians (a repudiation of the Bush-McCain attempt to find a consensus based on immediately offering legalization of existing illegals). Once the fence is approved, it might be difficult to stop--isn't that the way with pork barrel/public works projects? ... P.S.: And once part of the fence is built, won't the humanitarian incentive be to complete it across the entire border to prevent would-be immigrants from risking their lives in remote desert crossings? ... 8:49 P.M. link  

The lost pixel trail: As long as he's moving mountains in the publishing world--getting his new book  pulped and redone after a nightmarish printing snafu**--Andrew Sullivan may as well get to work on his archives. What's billed as the "complete archives" on his site goes back only to January of this year, as far as I can see. Where's the rest? How are we going to attack him for his embarrassing, excitable high-horse misjudgments if we can't go back and Control-C them?***... P.S.: True, that hasn't stopped Instapundit . ... Update: Or Frank Rich, apparently. Sullivan, answering Rich, says his blog posts on the immediate aftermath of the Iraq invasion are "unfindable, since my old archives are still being transferred to Time's server." How long does that take? ...

 **--A prize to the first reviewer who takes the obvious cheap shot. ("The pulped version was better!") ....

***--I wound up unpublishing a few years of blog archives when I moved to Slate, including some (involving 9/11 and Thanksgiving) that were highly convenient to lose. All the pre-Slate kausfiles archives that were ever on the Web are available at the bottom of this page. .. 8:35 P.M.

The L.A. party was unexpectedly good too!8:25 P.M.

'Stone Age' Mystery Solved? Hassan Abbas, a guest on Warren Olney's To the Point radio show** on Friday, claimed to have resolved the mystery of whether U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage had in fact threatened to bomb Pakistan "to the Stone Age" in a meeting with Lt. Gen. Mahmood Ahmed, an aide to Pakistan's President Musharraf. According to Abbas, Armitage said the U.S. might bomb Afghanistan back to the Stone Age, not Pakistan. But Ahmed interpreted it as a veiled threat to bomb Pakistan too, and reported as much to Musharraf. ... Seems plausible enough, and it reconciles everyone's stories! Plus Abbas seemed to say he reported his version in his book, Pakistan's Drift Into Extremism, published well before Musharraf's recent newsmaking revelation. ...

**--Abbas' version is at about 28:50 here. ... 12:16 A.M. link  

Saturday, September 23, 2006

9/11 rescuers Chuck Sereika and Marine Staff Sgt. Dave Karnes, "appalled" at the inaccuracies in Oliver Stone's World Trade Center, are planning to write a book(along with another 9/11 hero, New York City firefighter Tommy Asher), according to Greg Robin's thorough report in Hometown News. They blame a "rift" with rescued Officer Will Jimeno, one of the central characters in the film-- as well as rivalry between the NYC Fire Dept. and the Port Authority police. 

"I figured that America deserves to know the truth about that day," Mr. Sereika said. "They certainly didn't get it from Oliver Stone."

See here for my takeand here for Rebecca Liss'. As noted, the producers of the film didn't alter reality to tell a better story. They altered it to tell a worse story! But a story that apparently pleased key constituencies. ... 12:50 A.M. link  

Friday, September 22, 2006

From reader J:

Who knew that the Times would go after you fence-firsters with pathos laden pictures of over-ripe pears. They play dirty.

They're mobilizing the foodies! All bets are off. 12:00 P.M.

Showdown Week on bhTV reaches a brutal climax with the long-awaited Plamegate Death Match between David Corn ( Hubris) and Byron York (National Review) ... 10:43 A.M.

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Thursday, September 21, 2006

Trying to Get Around the Wall: It's hard for immigration soft-liners to argue that tougher border measures--such as a fence-- won't work ** ('they'll dig tunnels') while simultaneously complaining about the labor shortage that's already resulted from the more limited border measures that have been tried. Obviously, they have some effect. ...

**--See also Thursday's WSJ editorial [$] :

Nor will a wall deter illegal workers, who are drawn here by the powerful magnetic pull of economic opportunity and plentiful jobs.

If they're undeterrable, why are they being deterred now? ... 11:41 P.M.

Bert Fields on Line 2: As part of its public responsibility to serve the community, kf brings you the nastiest line in Shafer's rundown of the billionaire wannabe owners  of the LAT:

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