Saturday, December 18, 2010

What Mattered This Week?

No shortage, right?

Final action on the tax deal was obviously pretty important, certainly substantively, and probably politically as well.  And, today, we had cloture (and, soon, final passage) of DADT repeal. 

Both of these, by the way, fit nicely into "what mattered this week."  These were not inevitable events that finally happened to take place over the last seven days; one week ago, neither of these was at all certain.  Two weeks ago, they were totally up in the air. 

Both, of course, add to the record of the historic 111th Congress.  A couple of other things about DADT.  One is that I'd want to emphasize that this wasn't a done deal until very late in the game.  Barack Obama, Harry Reid, Joe Lieberman, and others deserve quite a bit of credit for this one; I do think that the way this was done, with as much of a public buy-in by the military as possible, really did make a potentially tough vote a much easier one for a large chunk of the Senate.  Of course, that's on the politician end; lots of activists, of course, worked hard for years to put this high on the Democrats' agenda.

The second is a fairly obvious point, I guess, but it's worth saying: this issue will now promptly go away, entirely.  Oh, we'll have a bit of reporting on implementation, but seriously: does anyone think that Republicans are going to run in 2012 on re-instating DADT?  Or, even less plausibly, on re-instating the ban that DADT replaced?  Forget it.  It's possible to believe that a DADT vote could be used in a GOP primary down the road, but it's utterly implausible to believe that the policy would ever be revived, no matter what happens in the 2012 (or any future cycle) elections. 

So, that's some of what mattered this week.  What do you have?


  1. The Palin-Krauthammer tiff. It appears that Palin is attempting to make it to the Presidency without leaving the Fox cocoon; probably an unlikely journey if Krauthammer is not on board. This is not to say that Krauthammer won't be on board; rather, that Palin's margin for error probably shrunk considerably this week.

  2. Time for a 111th Congress scorecard with the House in the left column and the Senate in the right.

  3. Taxes and DADT...I'm not sure there's much point in the "what mattered" post this week, as those two are so glaringly obvious.

  4. I was forced to approve of Joe Lieberman. That may not matter on a national scale, but I found it deeply personally uncomfortable.

  5. "this issue will now promptly go away, entirely"

    I'm not so sure. The GOP House will have to vote to approve a new UCMJ, one without the ban on sodomy and redefinition of adultery. These changes, of course, have been suggested before, mostly because heterosexual service members violate the rules all the time. But reality won't affect the spin. It never does.


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