Maybe some of you have noticed how quickly Roy Blunt fell in line with GOP obstructionism when it came to the potential Senate blockade of Obama nominees for the now vacant Scalia seat on the Supreme Court. He joined the line post-haste to echo the party approved and constitutionally unsupported argument that the Senate should “defer action” until “a new president selects someone for the vacant seat.” Shoot. I voted for this president just so he could fulfill all his constitutionally mandated duties, including filling vacant Supreme Court seats. Does Senator Blunt stop voting on legislation because he is in the last year of his elected position in the Senate?
It’s not surprising that calls to Blunt to do his constitutionally mandated job and fairly evaluate the legal qualifications of a presidential nominee slide right off his back. His main constituents (pdf) have always been the army of corporate lobbyists and cronies that have financed his aspirations for power in a Big GOP Government, one that works for Big Business, Big Oil and their like. It’s certainly not been me and you.
There’s plenty of speculation that U.S. House Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell, who serves the same group of corporate constituents, is willing to sacrifice his Senate majority to keep the court in right-wing legal hands – and why not? Control of the Court with its ability to assure a corporate friendly environment is what it’s been all about in the first place. The big goal of rolling back the New Deal and restoring the depredations of the Gilded Age has animated the corporate purchase of the GOP for years and it is now tantalizingly within reach.
However, I wonder if Senator Blunt will remain willing to go along when it’s clear he won’t necessarily get along. I bet he doesn’t want his to be one of those Senate seats that goes bye-bye. And yet … Daily Kos’ Joan McCarter reports today that PPP polling shows him to be one of the vulnerable:
… . Their new polling in four swing states suggests that it’s not just the blue state Republicans who need to be worried. John McCain in Arizona, Chuck Grassley in Iowa, Roy Blunt in Missouri, and Richard Burr in North Carolina all face re-election this year, and all are facing majorities of voters who want to see the Senate do its job.
She quotes statistics from the PPP poll, adding that “PPP finds that voters are particularly upset with the idea that these senators are blockading any nominee, and not at least waiting to find out who Obama puts forward”:
All these Senators start out with pretty mediocre approval ratings. John McCain’s approval is a 26/63 spread, Roy Blunt’s is 25/48, and Richard Burr’s is 28/44. Only Chuck Grassley within this group is on positive ground and his 47/44 spread is down considerably from what we usually find for him as he loses crossover support from Democrats because of his intransigence on the Supreme Court issue. Further making life difficult for this quartet is the incredibly damaged brand of Senate Republicans. Mitch McConnell is vastly unpopular in these four states, coming in at 11/63 in Iowa, 16/68 in Arizona, 16/69 in Missouri, and 19/65 in North Carolina. McConnell will be an albatross for all Senate Republicans seeking reelection this fall.
And guess what? If Blunt doesn’t want to do his job, Missouri Democrats have got a real contender who is willing to take up the task. Jason Kander is the strongest opponent he’s had in a long time – no more Robin Carnahans trying ineptly to talk out of the center of their mouths, alienating Democrats who are increasingly disabused of their supposed love affair with reasonable-sounding but empty centrist pablum. I do admit that Kander can find the center when he thinks he needs to, but that’s just the way it is in Missouri, and I’m willing to bet that there’s no way he’ll kiss-up as much as Carnahan promised to do, and, as Claire McCaskill tends to do when it comes to colossally stupid ideas like budget caps, cutting Social Security benefits, and killing environmentally responsible legislation that might upset coal-burning Missouri utilities.
So tell Roy to do his job. If he doesn’t want to, tell him to retire and finally, openly, go to work for the guys who’ve had him on their payroll all these years. Sure, he won’t be a big Washington hotshot anymore and probably won’t be able to use his influence for the lobbyist kiddies and wife as he has done in the past, but, hey, he can take the big bucks home when he doesn’t have to use them to fuel his upward movement in the GOP power structure. His climb probably peaked in the House DeLay years anyway. He may have hit the Tea Party ceiling.
My suggestion: Make a phone call or write an email to ol’ Roy. Give him this message:
–Do your job.
–If you don’t want to do it, quit – and don’t let the door hit you on your way out.
— If you don’t want to quit, we know how to show you that very door – and we’ve got somebody ready to take your place who might decide to work for everyday Missourians. And what a novelty that would be.