Wednesday, December 07, 2022

Sen. Warnock's win takes pressure off Manchin

Rev. Raphael Warnock beat Herschel Walker to become Georgia's first Black senator (Walker would also have earned that accolade had he won, so give thanks that a political idiot like him was not the one to triumph). It was still embarrassingly close - 51.4% to 48.6% - but the Democratic urban advantage was just enough to overcome the otherwise blanket Red tinge to the state and carry the day.

What this means on the bigger stage, though, is that, with a 51-49 edge in the Senate, the Democratic Party can no longer be held hostage by a DINO (Democrat In Name Only) like Senator Joe Manchin. Even if Manchin votes with the Republicans, as he seems to like to do, the Vice Presidential tie-breaker would still be enough for the Democrats to carry the vote. Manchin and fellow "centrist" (DINO) Kyrsten Sinema could still conceivably gang up to spoil the Democrats' more progressive moves, although that eventuality is less likely (BUT ... see Update below).

Funnily enough, even Manchin himself said he was relieved that the Senate was not hung 50-50 again, because he is apparently fed up of being in the position of "kingmaker" (or rather "spoiler"), even though that is a position he makes for himself by objecting so often to entirely reasonable Democratic policies.

Anyway, I hope not to have to complain about Manchin so regularly in the future. I would happily not have to mention him at all.


Just when you think it's safe to exhale, another spoke in the Democrat wheel appears out of nowhere. Above-mentioned Arizona Senator Kyrsten Sinema has suddenly decided that maybe she's not a Democrat after all, and has declared herself an Independent. Whether this means that she now intends to vote with the Republicans, or whether she just likes being ornery and contentious and newsworthy, is not clear at this point. 

Bernie Sanders and Angus King are two other Independent Senators who routinely vote with the Democrats, and are effectively considered part of the Democrat caucus. But Ms. Sinema is nothing if not unpredictable.

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