Senatorial Mathematics

Let’s look at numbers and names.

The Democrats have 48 in the Senate, plenty enough to sustain the filibusters they are still allowed to run (normal legislation and USSC confirmations).  And they only need three Republicans to join them on any one vote, to deny Trump and McConnell.

Parties in the minority have powerful incentives to hang together.  So far even Manchin of WV is playing along.  (That could easily change, but it may not matter – see below.)

Here’s my latest list of Republican Senators who could conceivably decide to at least slow down the Trumpian juggernaut . . . and maintain their own power and prerogatives, always a consideration for a US Senator.

  • Collins, Maine – already resisting the DeVos nomination.
  • Murkowski, Alaska – ditto, and remember she survived a Teeper revolt six years ago with ZERO help from the GOP, and she just got re-elected again.
  • McCain – Johnny Mac also just got re-elected, need fear nothing. At his age and health, it was probably his last election.
  • Flake, also AZ, was personally threatened by Trump in July in front of the whole caucus, may decide to answer properly at some point.
  • Graham, SC, with McCain on almost anything and already vocal about Trump’s mistakes.
  • Cruz, TX – May decide to re-grow his balls and get back at the bully who punked him so horribly.  (Hard to predict that character, but let’s include him for shits and giggles.)
  • Sasse, NB – Despises Trump anyway.
  • Rand Paul – Ditto.
  • Corker, TN – has more than once shown signs of sanity.
  • Rubio, FL, also owes Trump a punch in the nuts, and also freshly re-elected.
  • My own state’s Dean Heller, faces re-election next year and is already showing signs of running to the center to accomplish it. He’s a moderate by disposition anyway.

That is eleven, and all that’s needed on any one vote is three or four.  There may be others, too.  They could take turns just to keep McConnell confused. And several of them may enjoy THAT element of the game very very much. McConnell has been a notable bully as a caucus leader – and a confused and angry McConnell is a very funny sight.

Another consideration is that the Koch Brothers are reportedly very pissed off.  They are Libertarian fanatics, and this new authoritarian regime is NOT what they spent so much money to elect, for so many years.  They sat out 2016.  They may be willing to support a few rebels, this year and next.

(A straw in the wind:  that weasel Karl Rove just wrote an op-ed in the WSJ, that criticized the immigration-ban EO as horribly amateurish.  Not wrong but wrongly done – he’s Rove, after all.  But he shills for the Koch Brothers.)

One more thing: no one reads polls like a pol. Any President’s juice on the Hill extends as far as his current approval rating, and its trend line. Trump began on 20 January, with the biggest inauguration-day negatives in living memory, and is heading downhill from there.

And everyone on the Hill knows it.

 

5 Responses to Senatorial Mathematics

  1. AhBrightWings says:

    Tremendous thanks for that list Kevin. I just joined a grassroots movement to have him impeached and have made the case repeatedly this week that our focus must pivot to trying to work with Republicans who grasp how serious this crisis is. We just don’t have the numbers to make a dent or stop anything right now.

    Without turning a few redcoats (so to speak) we cannot first contain him (critical) or then make progress.

    I’d like to share this with my group, and plan on calling everyone on your list. Many thanks.

  2. KevinNevada says:

    ABW: It’s way too early for impeachment.

    Yes, he could be impeached today, he’s in violation of the Emoluments Clause.

    But he will have to screw up big time and be caught at it, for the House to even consider the matter. And this House won’t even hold that hearing.

    But we can slow them down and frustrate them and watch the Boss of All Things tweet out more offensive crap every night at 3 am.

    And it’s very much in the interests of many Republicans especially in the Senate, for that great slowing-down to occur. Power in DC mostly rests in the ability to stop things from happening, and that power tends to dissipate if it’s not used.

    The honeymoon is already over. I think the DeVos nomination is doomed. I could be wrong.

  3. I read this morning somewhere that the Senate offices have been getting about 1.5 million calls per day for this past week, more that twice any previous historical record.

    The observable fact that more and more Dem congresscritters are finding something resembling a spine (long way to go yet, though, let’s be realistic) suggests to me that at least some of those calls might not be entirely complimentary.

  4. NatashaFatale says:

    ABW: Trump will be impeached when the house GOP decides it’s got everything out of him it can get, and that Pence will deliver even more. He will be convicted when the senate agrees.

  5. KevinNevada says:

    I tried to call my now-senior Senator’s office (Heller) in DC – no one answered and the voicemail box was full.

    I sent an email, could not even get through to their Vegas office line.

    Yeah, they are swamped. Want to guess which side is making more calls?

    Just read the polls. Only a minority are happy with this new regime.

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