Republicans filibuster minimum wage bill
On a 54-43 vote, Democrats lost an effort to advance a House-passed bill that would lift the pay floor from $5.15 to $7.25 an hour without any accompanying tax cut.Well, well. Looks like we've got ourselves a merry band of Republican obstructionists! Weren't these the same guys who were complaining about Democratic filibusters not so long ago?
Opponents of the tax cut needed 60 votes to prevail.
There's just one difference: this bill is in America's best interest. But it's been blocked...because the wealthy get nothing out of it.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid forced a vote and most of the Senate Republican caucus has shown their true colors.
They don't care one iota about working families. A minority of the chamber has stymied legislation that would greatly benefit lower and middle income families (see our white paper on the minimum wage, released several weeks ago).
Among those supporting the filibuster was Oregon's Gordon Smith, an endangered Republican who needs to go in 2008. Smith's unacceptable vote is a slap in the face to the people of the Beaver State. Following orders from the GOP leadership is apparently more important than truly representing his constituents.
This action by Smith and his fellow Republicans is appalling - but par for the course.
UPDATE: TJ has more on Smith at Loaded Orygun.