Offering frequent news and analysis from the majestic Evergreen State and beyond, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's unconventional perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Cantwell victorious, Stevens defeated

Victory is at hand! The Cantwell filibuster has been successful! The Arctic Wildlife Refuge is protected again - for now.

1st Update: AP has details:
Republican leaders fell four votes short of getting the required 60 votes to avoid a threatened filibuster of the defense measure over the oil drilling issue. The vote prompted GOP leaders to huddle in private over their next move.

The vote that was 56-44.
It was actually 57-43, since Frist favors drilling, but voted with opponents so he could bring it back up again (have to love Senate parliamentary rules).

More from the AP:
"Our military is being held hostage by this issue, Arctic drilling," fumed Sen. Harry Reid, the Democratic leader. The Nevada Democrat said the Senate could move quickly to pass the defense bill once the refuge issue was resolved.

"We all agree we want money for our troops. ... This is not about the troops," said Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., a strong critic of disturbing the refuge in northeastern Alaska by oil development.
Good quotes from Senate Democrats.

As for Sen. Maria Cantwell, we received this statement from her office:
"This was a great bipartisan victory for all members who worked to play by the rules and a great bipartisan victory for our troops. I'm glad we stood up to say that this trickery. It’s time to fund and support the troops now without anymore tricks. Now that we’ve successfully removed these provisions from this legislation, we can get down to business and deliver to our men and women in uniform around the world the resources they need to do their jobs and keep America safe. We successfully stopped drilling in the Arctic for now, but we will remain vigilant next year to make sure that the country focuses its energy on real solutions to our over dependence on foreign oil and not Christmas packages for the oil companies."
Tremendous applause for Senator Maria Cantwell's outstanding leadership. By standing up and refusing to back down, she beat Stevens in a resounding victory.

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