The Senate just voted 75-25 to condemn the infamous MoveOn "General Betray Us" ad which, of course, is the most important issue facing our country today and thus far more worthy of cloture than, say, restoring Habeas. I do agree that the "Betray Us" ad was in poor taste. But what about supporting all the troops, rather than just the ones willing to serve as water carriers for the Bush administration?
Well, those troops can apparently just suck it. Fresh off denying them much needed rest, Republicans voted en masse against a substitute amendment by Senator Boxer that would have condemned all political attacks against our nation's troops and veterans. "Betray Us", qualifies, as does the Swift-Boating of John Kerry and the smear of Ex-Sen. Max Cleland in 2002. Because Democrats couldn't overcome the 60-vote margin necessary, the resolution didn't pass.
The problem here isn't that Republicans have no shame. Few politicians possess an intrinsic sense of shame; they can only be shamed by outside forces (the media, the voters) willing to take them to task for outrageous conduct. And in contrast to Democrats, who are forced to undergo a renewed round of newspaper and television fire every time a MoveOn-type organization sneezes, Republicans know that they can be as cruel and mean-spirited to the troops as they want without ever seeing the media blink. Check the papers tomorrow, and let me know if you see a headline reading along the lines of "Republicans block vote condemning political attacks against troops." It'll never happen, and I have no idea why we've collectively agreed to set our expectations so low for one party but not the other.