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The Obama administration is seeking to use our military to advance its leftist social agenda. It is up to the American people to stop this attack on our men and women in uniform. There is no time to lose.
A bill is awaiting final floor action in the Senate that would scrap both the provision that has prevented open homosexuals from serving in the military and force military hospitals and military personnel to perform abortions, a process many consider to be abhorrent.
Gay- and abortion-rights activists have admitted that these bills would never pass on their own. Therefore, the administration is using the defense authorization bill as the vehicle to advance these two controversial issues. Our elected representatives are cynically using our men and women in the military as pawns at a time when they are being asked to lay down their lives to rid Iraq and Afghanistan of the terrorists that are a threat to the world. How low is that?
It is rare that a defense bill is filibustered, rarer still when the nation is at war. However, we must ask our senators to do just that, as they are the last line of defense. Be assured that because of the current makeup of Congress, this bill will pass if it makes it to the floor. The very best we can hope for is that a filibuster will happen and that it can be sustained.
To understand the dynamics at work here, you must first understand the budget process. Before money can be spent on any department, there are two bills that need to be passed: an authorization bill and an appropriations bill. The authorization bill is, in effect, permission to open the checking account. It also contains the rules of the road. The appropriations bills are tantamount to writing the checks for the various expenditures.
Each year, there are 12 appropriations bills that need to be passed to complete the budget. In recent years, Congress has been slow to do this job. At the end of the fiscal year, it often rolls the uncompleted appropriations bills into one giant catchall called an omnibus appropriations bill.
Technically, the authorization bill has to come before the appropriations bill, but Congress has devised many ways to get around this requirement. If the authorization bill is filibustered over these issues, you will hear that (mostly) Republicans are holding up the war funding and putting our military at risk. Don’t be fooled!
If the authorization bill does not pass, the military can be funded with something called a “Continuing Resolution”. It simply means that money can flow, but the military will operate under the same rules it is using right now. This is the best we can hope for until a new Congress is sworn in next January.
Make no mistake – the president and the present congressional leaders are willing to lose their seats if necessary to usher in their radical agenda. That is why this bill was jammed through the House of Representatives and out the door of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
Who can we count on to lead the filibuster? The most likely candidate is Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who is the ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. McCain indicated as much when he voted against the final bill in committee. Should McCain falter, you can count on Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., who is also a senior member of that committee.
Forty-one votes are needed to sustain a filibuster (prevent the bill from going to a final vote). How do the votes stack up? Scott Brown, R-Mass., though socially liberal, voted against the bill in committee with his hero, McCain. The only Democrat to vote against the bill was Jim Webb, D-Va. There will be tremendous pressure on these two to change their votes.
Ben Nelson, D-Neb., who is pro-life and socially conservative, voted with the majority of his party. Go figure. Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, usually vote with Democrats on social issues but could be persuaded to help the party sustain the filibuster if enough pressure is applied.
The men and women of the military need our help. While in uniform, their hands are tied. They cannot lobby Congress. That’s our job.
This bill could come to the floor at any time; the time to act is now.