This, and not in some fight over a few billion, is where we should make our stand.
[See the UPDATES. I have changed my mind about this, thanks to the persuasive arguments of my commenters. — P]
Let’s recognize the 15 who didn’t.
The House has passed the following ridiculous and laughably unconstitutional law (.PDF):
If the House has not received a message from the Senate before April 6, 2011, stating that it has passed a measure providing for the appropriations for the departments and agencies of the Government for the remainder of fiscal year 2011, the provisions of H.R. 1, as passed by the House on February 19, 2011, are hereby enacted into law.
Uh, no it won’t.
This was passed on April 1, and although it is a joke, the people who supported it apparently did so in all seriousness. Which is infuriating.
Anyone who voted for this is either an utter moron, or has chosen to place partisanship above the text of the Constitution. I suspect it is an attempt to avoid being blamed for a shutdown, but doing so by passing a transparently unconstitutional law is, to put it mildly, not the best way to achieve that goal.
Simon from Stubborn Facts declares 221 Republicans to be idiots. Ed Morrissey more politely raps them on the knuckles, but reminds us that Democrats have supported such ridiculous moves themselves (“deem and pass,” anyone?). Ed also helpfully links to the roll call vote.
I thought it was worth it to comb through the list and compile a list of the 15 Republicans who showed fealty to the Constitution and voted “no” on this act. There are damn few enough of them; they ought to be recognized.
Before I give you the list, let me say there are two names I expected to see there: Ron Paul, who for all his crazy foreign policy ideas and thinly veiled anti-Semitism is one of the few people in Congress whose domestic policies resemble something authorized by the Constitution, and Tom McClintock, who is one of the few politicians in America for whom I have total respect, and whom I proudly supported in the California recall election against the RINO Ahhnold.
Here, then, are the only 14 Republicans in the House for whom I retain any respect … plus Ron Paul (sorry, I still don’t respect him):
Note that the list does not include “constitutionalist” Michele Bachmann. Other names I was very disappointed to see as “yes” votes include Mike Pence, Paul Ryan, and Darrell Issa (who is doing a fabulous job on Project Gunrunner). Tell me how I can continue to respect these people in light of this vote.
To try to end this highly depressing post on a positive note: other names I was pleased to see among the 15 included Ted Poe, who has done a great job highlighting the dangers posed by our failure to deport illegal alien criminals, and my own representative Dana Rohrabacher. Looks like I can continue to vote for him with a clear conscience.
UPDATE: Commenter Milhouse defends the bill in the comments. I’m not sure I buy his argument … but it’s possible he’s right.
UPDATE x2: Beldar reviews the floor debate. His findings are kinder to my original view than they are to Milhouse’s argument.
UPDATE x3: OK, I think Milhouse, MI, and other commenters have convinced me. I am writing up a new post to explain. I will send it to Ed Morrissey, Simon Dodd, and Jonathan Adler. I will link it here when I am done.
UPDATE x4: I have now finalized my complete 180 on this. You can read my new post here. Thanks to Milhouse, MI, Beldar, and others for their thoughtful and civil discussion.