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    Repiglican Roast

    A spirited discussion of public policy and current issues

    Name:
    Location: The mouth of being

    I'm furious about my squandered nation.

    Thursday, March 13, 2008

    What Happened to Democrats Like this?

    Pretty scary that the US is pretending Barack Obama belongs to the same party as Howard Metzenbaum. Barack Obama is strictly republican. And so is Hillary Clinton.

    The right wing media succeeded in selecting the democrat nominee for president.


    [...]
    That victory produced his third, final and most productive term in the Senate. When it was over, in 1995, he started a new career as consumer advocate, heading the Consumer Federation of America.

    Former Sen. Howard Metzenbaum, an Ohio Democrat who was a feisty self-made millionaire before he began a long career fighting big business in the Senate, died Wednesday night. He was 90.

    Metzenbaum died at his home near Fort Lauderdale, Fla., said Joel Johnson, his former chief of staff. No cause was given.

    During 18 years on Capitol Hill, until his retirement in 1995, Metzenbaum came to be known as "Senator No" and "Headline Howard" for his abilities to block legislation and get publicity for himself.

    He was a cantankerous firebrand who didn't need a microphone to hold a full auditorium spellbound while dropping rhetorical bombs on big oil companies, the insurance industry, savings and loans, and the National Rifle Association, to name just a few favorite targets.

    Unabashedly liberal, the former labor lawyer and union lobbyist considered himself a champion of workers and was a driving force behind the law requiring 60-day notice of plant closings.

    When other liberals shied away from that label, Metzenbaum embraced it, winning re-election in 1988 from Ohio voters who chose Republicans for governor and president, and by wider margins than either George Voinovich or George H.W. Bush.

    [...]

    His filibusters and stall tactics were so successful that the mere threat of Metzenbaum opposition was often enough to win concessions.

    Once, when a two-week filibuster was cut off and Metzenbaum was still determined to block action on lifting natural gas price controls, he and a partner sent the Senate into round-the-clock sessions by demanding roll call votes on 500 amendments.

    Another year, he held up 80 judicial appointments until his colleagues agreed to schedule consideration of a bill he considered vital.

    Metzenbaum claimed to have single-handedly saved billions of tax dollars by blocking special tax breaks and pork-barrel programs. In 1982, The Washington Post tallied the price tag of legislation he blocked that year and came up with a minimum of $10 billion.

    In time, Metzenbaum evolved from minority-party commando to majority-party subcommittee chairman and became known as much for the legislation he moved as for the bills he blocked.

    He headed panels with jurisdiction over labor and antitrust, and took on such issues as pension protection, workplace safety, the right to strike, age discrimination, food labeling, baby formula pricing, retail price-fixing, insurance antitrust and cable television monopolies.




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