A Few Words on GOP Ex Post Facto Introspection

Last week, some took note of posts on a conservative blog by former Rep. Rob Witwer, as well as incumbent Sen. Shawn Mitchell of Broomfield, both expressing hypothetical support for civil unions for same-sex couples. In Mitchell’s case it’s a particularly interesting turnabout, coming just a few weeks after he cast his vote against a bill to create civil unions–not necessarily a hit on Sen. Mitchell’s sincerity, but certainly worth noting as he does at length in his blog post.

Today, the Colorado Independent reports on the failure yesterday in the GOP-controlled House Education Committee of the ASSET bill, which would have allowed the children of illegal immigrants in Colorado high schools for at least three years to attend state colleges at in-state rates. A different issue, but can you spot the morning-after similarity?

The Republican committee killed the bill on a party-line 7-6 vote. Democrats had thought they might be able to sway one Republican vote. Despite Republican amendments and a room full of undocumented children concerned about their futures, Democrats were wrong. However, they did see some hope as one Republican who voted no Monday, said he could very well be a “yes” next time.

“It breaks my heart to have to do it, today,” Ramirez told the Colorado Independent about his “no” vote on the legislation. “But hopefully in the near future we will be able to make some changes.”

Those changes would come in two forms, he said. Ramirez first explained he would work with bill sponsors, Sen. Mike Johnston, D-Denver, and Rep. Joe Miklosi, D-Denver, to bring the Colorado congressional delegation together on the need for federal immigration reform. Ramirez further said he planned to work over the summer to bring a bill similar to ASSET that would be more palatable to both Republicans and the voters…

There seems to be a trend emerging here, folks. As with Sen. Mitchell, let’s be clear that we don’t doubt Rep. Robert Ramirez’s sincerity, or that his “no” vote yesterday on the ASSET bill was a reluctant one. Like Sen. Mitchell on civil unions, if Rep. Ramirez emerges as a real partner with proponents of the ASSET bill to pass an equivalent next year, that’s great. But we’re not at all confident that Ramirez is going to be any more successful in moving the logjammed federal immigration reform situation forward than actual immigration advocates a lot higher up the food chain, and in Washington they’ll point out that the Colorado legislature just voted this down.

Likewise Mitchell could become an advocate for civil unions, or he might find any number of semantic quibbles to spend another legislative session, you know, quibbling with. In both the case of civil unions and reasonable immigration policy, we’ve repeatedly pointed to polls and statistics showing unstoppable generational and demographic shifts mandating change; and endangering politicians on any side who get in the way of it. And yet in this legislative session, when Republicans had a chance to share real political credit with actual votes, there lies a pile of dead bills–and vague, guilty promises to “do the right thing” some time in the future.

Are we being too hard on them? We know exactly how they can prove us wrong, and so do you.

33 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Middle of the Road says:

    So do votes.

    • droll says:

      I get that many politicians think voters are dumb and without memories, but this is getting ridiculous to the point of stupid.

      In this case I’m guessing “palatable” means a bill that grants in-state tuition to Canadians who are here legally for at least six months.

      Both issues mentioned are either right or wrong. Where were the technical amendments otherwise? There was nothing palatble because they don’t think it’s wrong. But oh, it’s not that anyone thinks either group shouldn’t be treated equally, they just don’t think either group should have the same opportunities and rights.

      With all due sincerity,

      Colorado GOP

      • ProgressiveCowgirl says:

        I’m pretty sure they’d be okay with in state tuition for any white people who are here legally for at least six months, Canadian or not. It’s the scary brown ones that steal our jobs, ‘member?

  2. LakewoodTodd says:

    Ramirez could get kicked out off office in 2012. If I rememer correctly, his seat is the one that was won by 198 votes and made the difference between an R and a D majority. Believe me, the Dems were already going to be aiming for that seat BEFORE this vote.

  3. c rork says:

    that Ramirez threw was shameful. “Oh, I don’t know how I’m going to vote right now! It breaks my heart”. Gimme a fuckin break. I knew how he was going to vote before the hearing began.

    I DO question Ramirez’s sincerity. If you’re going to vote no, spare me the theatrics.

    • Gilpin Guy says:

      If Ramirez is doing the dirty work for his racist district then he shouldn’t be acting all Hoity-toity about how he might have voted for it.

      Shove it up your asshole asshole.

    • Cordelia Chase says:

      Support for Gay Marriage is over 50% now, and Civil Unions is even higher.  So obviously there are some Republicans voting party ideals and not what their district.  Because some of their districts must support the idea too.  

      • Voyageur says:

        Sadly, GOP base still includes many gay bashers.  And moderates are still defined as those who stay home on caucus night, when primary challenges are launched.

        • rocco says:

          The republican base of the base is the older white extreme right reagan christian conservative racists that on one hand blame everything on dark skinned people  that are receiving that rotten Medicare, and on the other literally blame the President and the Democrats for the Ryan Bill that passed the House.

          When you tell these types that the Ryan legislation was sponsored, introduced, voted on and passed by a republican majority and all 235 votes came from republicans, (as I did monday night in hushed voice at work) the reaction was stunning.

          These people actually don’t know Obama was not behind the nefarious bill………..really!

          Faux News literally is reporting the republicans are saving Medicare, and Obama and the Democrats are trying to steal theirs’ and their parents’ Medicare obligations.

          Make no mistake, the older white base of the republican party believes it.    

        • reubenesp says:

          But in the final analysis it all comes down to the general election.  As we saw in the last election, the Dems were terrified of supporting progressive issues for fear of losing votes and, nationally, most of them were wiped out anyway.

          I do think the tide has turned however.  The Republican conservatives who control the party have dealt themselves a potentially fatal blow by trying to undermine the big three social safety net programs.

          And poll after poll has shown that Republicans by a wide margin favor comprehensive immigration reform. http://americasvoiceonline.org

          But Colorado Republicans and native Chicanos have a long, antagonistic relationship that extends back generations.  As a result, the extent to which national Republican attitudes toward immigration plays out in Colorado remains to be seen.

  4. RedGreen says:

    They’re not just passive up-or-down votes at the end of the process. If they really mean what they say, then where were the amendments offered in committee or on the floor?  If it’s just a matter of shaving off some rough edges, then why were Republican lawmakers mostly otherwise silent “no” votes when they were actually considering civil unions and ASSET?  

  5. Diogenesdemar says:

    the newly untroved memoirs of Theophilus Eugene Connor (look it up!) contain a chapter where claims having had no choice.

    Lamentably the Pomeranian puppies he would have preferred, hadn’t completed their entire training.

  6. HikingTheAppalachianTrail says:

    Why didn’t these bills pass during the previous four sessions that the Dems controlled both chambers and the Gov’s office?

    • RedGreen says:

      The answer is probably different for the different bills. Not enough time had passed since the marriage votes, and public opinion hadn’t changed as dramatically as it has by this year on civil unions. And on ASSET, it’s true that all Democrats don’t march in lockstep in fear of their base on every issue.  

    • Gilpin Guy says:

      during a decade of Republican rule of the White House and Congress?

    • Arvadonian says:

      The wringing of hands by Democrats in the legislature this year as they tried to blame Republicans for killing civil unions was disgusting.  I will believe that Democrats are more interested in legislation than political issues when they actually manage to pass civil unions.  Introducing it this year was little more than a cynical attempt to garner favor with the LGBT community and those who support us.

      • Gilpin Guy says:

        was another sham hypocrisy foisted on the country by Democrats.

        I didn’t miss your bitter diatribes against Democrats at all when you went into self-imposed exile over your belief that you were a victim who would never get justice.  You’re writing is still nothing but a pile of stale complaints you whiny quitter.  

        • Arvadonian says:


          And by the way, that isn’t “whining”….its yelling; and the only thing I’ve “quit” is accepting pablum from politicians (and people such as yourself) who claim to support civil rights–until push comes to shove and then you cut and run.

          • Gilpin Guy says:

            between friend and foe anymore.

            All you care about is yourself and your issues and if anything else is given a higher priority than you fly into a rage of indignation that your pet issues aren’t being resolved enough.

            If you had been part of the civil rights marches in the south in the 60’s you would have quit before you got to the Birmingham Bridge.

            Don’t kid yourself that your hatred for any politician who doesn’t jump to please you is anything other than a childish tantrum put on by someone who won’t acknowledge progress regardless of the pace.

            • Arvadonian says:

              Quite the contrary.  I would say I’m tired of being treated like I child.  I no longer believe in false “Santa Clause promises” of the “political adults” and their enablers such as yourself.

              Furthermore it is you who is throwing the temper tantrum….”give my candidates your vote like you used to–don’t make them earn it or question them…that is just rude!”

              As to your referring to me as childish….I’ve been called far worse by better than you, buddy.

            • Gilpin Guy says:

              until you get to flaunt your gayness in the church of your choice.  That will show everyone just how important gayness is to you.

              I wouldn’t want to be in foxhole with you because I was afraid you would try to corn hole my ear while I was asleep.  I wouldn’t want to serve with you because you are a quitter.

              To say that Michelle Bachmann and Barack Obama are identical in their concern for your issue really shows what a fucked up person you are politically.

              • Arvadonian says:

                I never said that Bachmann and Obama were identical in their concern for my issues.  Bachmann does care about them (from the wrong side); Obama couldn’t give a shit about them.

                Your ear would be safe in a foxhole with me as there is no way your ear canal could accomodate me (although it appears that if I could make it past your ear canal, there is plenty of room in your cranial cavity).

                Finally, I’m not a quitter…I am still strongly advocating for issues that are of import to me…I’m just no longer wasting my time on candidates who wine and dine me during the campaign and then lose my number once the election is over.

            • Gilpin Guy says:

              the world and seeks public approval because you don’t think of them as icky activities.  You’re just normal and trying to find your place in the sun.  OK.

              What I find so annoying is that besides quitting on Democratic politicians with your bitter quitter attitude, you also quit on the Polar Bear and the Hummingbird and the octopus.  You quit on the children of the poor and laid off who go to bed cold and hungry.  You quit on the possibility of a future with sustainable energy and economies.  Do you really think Republicans will address your grievances any quicker than they will their abortion allies?

              It never occurs to you that poor people are facing food insecurities that easily compare in gravity and immediate need with you being miffed that you can’t get married under the apple tree.

              I fully support the policies and directions of the current Democratic administration and am quite alarmed at the ineptitude and extremist insanity of the Republican Party.  Maybe Obama isn’t the black Jesus but I would say the man works pretty hard every day to help the country.  If we all tried as hard in our own lives, we might get somewhere quitter.

              • Arvadonian says:

                I don’t give a shit about the Polar Bear, the Hummingbird and the octopus.  Couldn’t care less.  If you are that concerned about them, kick off a voter registration drive in the forest or ocean.

                Go ahead, get your Kumbaya Corner together and I wish you the best.  I will no longer be a part of it.  Sounds to me like you look at voting as you own personal anti-depressant treatment.  Whatever gets you off, I guess.  Enjoy the kool aid.

    • shrubHugger says:

      Simple. Hick would.  

  7. DavidThi808 says:

    Monday – Saturday they murder, steal, etc. On Sunday they go to church and ask for forgiveness.

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