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(Boston Globe)   After waiting nearly 40 years to win a seat in the Senate, Ed Markey (D-MA) finally gets a chance to show off his legislative chops and political courage...and votes "present" on Syria resolution   (bostonglobe.com) divider line 50
    More: Fail, Ed Markey, President Obama, The Arizona Republic, United States Senate committees  
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949 clicks; posted to Politics » on 06 Sep 2013 at 11:41 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



50 Comments   (+0 »)
   
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Archived thread
 
2013-09-06 10:31:59 AM  
How is that a fail?
 
2013-09-06 10:45:44 AM  

Mentat: How is that a fail?


tfa: "Markey said he cast his equivocal vote because he wants more time to analyze the situation. He said in an interview that the resolution was written too broadly"

If that's the problem, vote no and quit bullshiatting people.
 
2013-09-06 10:48:58 AM  

Mentat: How is that a fail?


he's doing it for political reasons, he doesn't want to be on the record as for or against when he doesn't know how the vote will go.

He goes with what's the best for his reelection politically. It's how he's always run.

he's certainly no Warren, but he's (sadly) miles better than Gomey
 
2013-09-06 10:51:48 AM  

somedude210: He goes with what's the best for his reelection politically. It's how he's always run.


This defines 90% of American Politics.
 
2013-09-06 10:51:50 AM  

Gulper Eel: Mentat: How is that a fail?

tfa: "Markey said he cast his equivocal vote because he wants more time to analyze the situation. He said in an interview that the resolution was written too broadly"

If that's the problem, vote no and quit bullshiatting people.


Huh? Wanting to wait until he has more information means he has to vote no? That's, well that's stupid. He did the right thing.
 
2013-09-06 11:43:56 AM  
We face a choice of outcomes.

The first option: We allow what was a rapidly modernizing nation just three years ago, with a modicum of civil rights for most and a leader who showed a great deal of restraint in dealing with his people, to an illegitimate regime that clings to power over an economic backwater with a decimated infrastructure only by crushing the spirit of dissent with secret police and outright killings of its own people.

The second option: If the Al Qaeda-aligned factions gain control of Syria, they will do so through the capture of military hardware. If Assad is unable to destroy all 1000 tons of chemical weapons in his scattered depots before he is overcome, we will face an extremist movement with access to G-series and possibly V-series agents. These will be easily smuggled into Lebanon and threaten Israel.
Even if you despise Israeli influence in US politics, their citizens (many of whom vote against their right-wing elements) don't deserve death by nerve agent. Furthermore, an Israeli invasion of Lebanon and possibly even Syria itself will become almost inevitable, with concomitant civilian casualties and further regional conflict that will all but demand intervention by the United States.

My solution: a partition of Syria along the April 2013 lines, with land swaps. Assad will resign all government and military powers in perpetuity, submit to house arrest for three years, and allow the destruction of his chemical weapons stockpile in exchange for amnesty for him, his wife, and select senior government officials (who will be selected for their ability to pressure Assad into accepting the deal, rather than merit, though the latter is a plus).

Yaribiyah, Qamishli, Idlib, Hasakah, Deir ez-Zor, Kesab, and the region around Aleppo will be handed over to the Rebels, while the Rebels surrender the areas around Palmyra, Daraa, Nawa, Al-Zabadam, Damascus, Safita, Duraykish, and Homs.

A strict demilitarized zone will be enforced by Reaper drone, targeting any and all heavy armor deviating from previously-planned routes for transfer during the land-swap, as well as fighter aircraft and helicopter gunships, which must be transported by ground.

A United Nations peacekeeping force will be deployed to the areas around Damascus and Daraa to prevent reprisals against civilians. They'll probably be there for at least five years.

Once this deal is in place, the U.N. will back the postrevolutionary peacekeeping operation. Russia keeps Tartus, so Putin will have little reason to complain.
 
2013-09-06 11:45:38 AM  
Yeah, but what does Biz Markie think about Syria?

"Oh Putin.... You!... You got what I need!  But you say Assad is just a friend.... You say he's just a friend!"
 
2013-09-06 11:52:51 AM  

Gulper Eel: If that's the problem, vote no and quit bullshiatting people.


Bingo.
 
2013-09-06 11:53:09 AM  

Mentat: How is that a fail?


He pulled an Obama. No courage to take a stance one way or the other.
 
2013-09-06 11:55:02 AM  
For right now, that's a reasonable vote.
 
2013-09-06 11:55:46 AM  
If I don't survive, tell my wife, "Hello"
 
2013-09-06 11:56:49 AM  

Mentat: How is that a fail?


"Do you approve or disapprove?"

"Yep, I'm here today."

Brilliant.
 
2013-09-06 11:57:30 AM  

Notabunny: For right now, that's a reasonable vote.


Because voting for Obama's plan would be unreasonable?
 
2013-09-06 12:01:09 PM  

somedude210: Mentat: How is that a fail?

he's doing it for political reasons, he doesn't want to be on the record as for or against when he doesn't know how the vote will go.


Aren't all votes for political reasons?
 
2013-09-06 12:02:54 PM  

Nemo's Brother: Notabunny: For right now, that's a reasonable vote.

Because voting for Obama's plan would be unreasonable?


Yes. It is not reasonable to start another war in the middle east. That debate has yet to be had.
 
2013-09-06 12:04:19 PM  

lockers: Nemo's Brother: Notabunny: For right now, that's a reasonable vote.

Because voting for Obama's plan would be unreasonable?

Yes. It is not reasonable to start another war in the middle east. That debate has yet to be had.


Agreed. So he should have voted 'no' and shown a little backbone.
 
2013-09-06 12:06:40 PM  

Nemo's Brother: lockers: Nemo's Brother: Notabunny: For right now, that's a reasonable vote.

Because voting for Obama's plan would be unreasonable?

Yes. It is not reasonable to start another war in the middle east. That debate has yet to be had.

Agreed. So he should have voted 'no' and shown a little backbone.


He should do as the people he represents direct him to do.
 
2013-09-06 12:13:48 PM  

phenn: Nemo's Brother: lockers: Nemo's Brother: Notabunny: For right now, that's a reasonable vote.

Because voting for Obama's plan would be unreasonable?

Yes. It is not reasonable to start another war in the middle east. That debate has yet to be had.

Agreed. So he should have voted 'no' and shown a little backbone.

He should do as the people he represents direct him to do.


It's reasonable because not everybody feels they've had enough information to make a decision.
 
2013-09-06 12:14:57 PM  

omnibus_necanda_sunt: We face a choice of outcomes.

The first option: We allow what was a rapidly modernizing nation just three years ago, with a modicum of civil rights for most and a leader who showed a great deal of restraint in dealing with his people, to an illegitimate regime that clings to power over an economic backwater with a decimated infrastructure only by crushing the spirit of dissent with secret police and outright killings of its own people.

The second option: If the Al Qaeda-aligned factions gain control of Syria, they will do so through the capture of military hardware. If Assad is unable to destroy all 1000 tons of chemical weapons in his scattered depots before he is overcome, we will face an extremist movement with access to G-series and possibly V-series agents. These will be easily smuggled into Lebanon and threaten Israel.
Even if you despise Israeli influence in US politics, their citizens (many of whom vote against their right-wing elements) don't deserve death by nerve agent. Furthermore, an Israeli invasion of Lebanon and possibly even Syria itself will become almost inevitable, with concomitant civilian casualties and further regional conflict that will all but demand intervention by the United States.

My solution: a partition of Syria along the April 2013 lines, with land swaps. Assad will resign all government and military powers in perpetuity, submit to house arrest for three years, and allow the destruction of his chemical weapons stockpile in exchange for amnesty for him, his wife, and select senior government officials (who will be selected for their ability to pressure Assad into accepting the deal, rather than merit, though the latter is a plus).

Yaribiyah, Qamishli, Idlib, Hasakah, Deir ez-Zor, Kesab, and the region around Aleppo will be handed over to the Rebels, while the Rebels surrender the areas around Palmyra, Daraa, Nawa, Al-Zabadam, Damascus, Safita, Duraykish, and Homs.

A strict demilitarized zone will be enforced by Reaper drone, targe ...


Either foreign affairs genius or making stuff up... I have no way to judge.
 
2013-09-06 12:15:28 PM  

Nemo's Brother: lockers: Nemo's Brother: Notabunny: For right now, that's a reasonable vote.

Because voting for Obama's plan would be unreasonable?

Yes. It is not reasonable to start another war in the middle east. That debate has yet to be had.

Agreed. So he should have voted 'no' and shown a little backbone.


Am I mistaken or isn't voting present equivalent to 'no' for passage purposes? This thing could take multiple votes to get through so he might have a legitimate point. I'll give him a pass before calling him a coward.
 
2013-09-06 12:17:40 PM  

Notabunny: phenn: Nemo's Brother: lockers: Nemo's Brother: Notabunny: For right now, that's a reasonable vote.

Because voting for Obama's plan would be unreasonable?

Yes. It is not reasonable to start another war in the middle east. That debate has yet to be had.

Agreed. So he should have voted 'no' and shown a little backbone.

He should do as the people he represents direct him to do.

It's reasonable because not everybody feels they've had enough information to make a decision.


Of course. Mind you, every friend I talk to about the subject is very much against it, has reached out to their representative and let them know. By that, I feel the people in congress need to defer to the people they represent.
 
2013-09-06 12:22:59 PM  

phenn: Nemo's Brother: lockers: Nemo's Brother: Notabunny: For right now, that's a reasonable vote.

Because voting for Obama's plan would be unreasonable?

Yes. It is not reasonable to start another war in the middle east. That debate has yet to be had.

Agreed. So he should have voted 'no' and shown a little backbone.

He should do as the people he represents direct him to do.


Again, he would vote 'no' then. Voting present is what cowardly politicians who don't want to be wrong do. It helped Obama get elected. In a lot of issues, he was a clean slate because of his voting present.
 
2013-09-06 12:24:36 PM  

Nemo's Brother: Again, he would vote 'no' then. Voting present is what cowardly politicians who don't want to be wrong do. It helped Obama get elected. In a lot of issues, he was a clean slate because of his voting present.


LOL, wut?
 
2013-09-06 12:26:32 PM  

lockers: Nemo's Brother: lockers: Nemo's Brother: Notabunny: For right now, that's a reasonable vote.

Because voting for Obama's plan would be unreasonable?

Yes. It is not reasonable to start another war in the middle east. That debate has yet to be had.

Agreed. So he should have voted 'no' and shown a little backbone.

Am I mistaken or isn't voting present equivalent to 'no' for passage purposes? This thing could take multiple votes to get through so he might have a legitimate point. I'll give him a pass before calling him a coward.


All Democrats deserve a pass, right?  If you don't have enough information, than your default vote has to be 'no'.
 
2013-09-06 12:28:27 PM  

ILostMyPassword: Either foreign affairs genius or making stuff up... I have no way to judge.


I'd go with the latter. No one who knows anything would have characterized Syria as he did in "Option 1", and no one would say there are only two possible outcomes, either.
 
2013-09-06 12:34:55 PM  
Why is "present" even an option?
 
2013-09-06 12:45:37 PM  

lockers: somedude210: Mentat: How is that a fail?

he's doing it for political reasons, he doesn't want to be on the record as for or against when he doesn't know how the vote will go.

Aren't all votes for political reasons?


Believe it or not, on occasion we elect people who vote for what they believe to be right.

It would seem that Markey is not one of those people. Shame on him.
 
2013-09-06 12:47:53 PM  

Nemo's Brother: Mentat: How is that a fail?

He pulled an Obama. No courage to take a stance one way or the other.


Obama is a dictator when he provided help to overthrow Qaddafi without consulting Congress and allowing debate. He is without courage when for Syria he ask for debate?
 
2013-09-06 12:48:26 PM  

jigger: Why is "present" even an option?


Well, if you don't vote, you get knocked for not showing up and doing your job. If you vote present you show that you showed up to do your job, but made a decision to not to actually do it.
 
2013-09-06 12:50:07 PM  
Stupid to dump on people for voting "present". It's a damned sight more ethical to state "Yes, I was here for the vote but I can't in good conscience vote either way due to lack of information/no strong feeling on the issue/etc" than to make a yes or no vote on something you aren't equipped to vote yes or no on. Easily one of the stupidest elements of American politics is the insistence that every politician have a strong stand on every issue regardless of whether they know anything about it or it affects them or their constituents. We'd be a lot better off if "present" was used a lot more often.
 
2013-09-06 12:59:59 PM  

lockers: Nemo's Brother: Again, he would vote 'no' then. Voting present is what cowardly politicians who don't want to be wrong do. It helped Obama get elected. In a lot of issues, he was a clean slate because of his voting present.

LOL, wut?


Sorry. I need to site myself. If Jon Stewart doesn't cover a topic, most Total Farkers are clueless on the issue. I'll let you go Google your talking point rebuff to this, so take your time.

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2008/feb/13/obamas-p re sent-tension/
 
2013-09-06 01:01:56 PM  

lockers: Nemo's Brother: Again, he would vote 'no' then. Voting present is what cowardly politicians who don't want to be wrong do. It helped Obama get elected. In a lot of issues, he was a clean slate because of his voting present.

LOL, wut?


Fun fact:  in 2008, we had a choice between Obama, who voted in favor of one version of a FISA bill and voted "present" on another version, and McCain, who voted in favor of one version of a FISA bill and voted "present" on another version.  Somehow that got Obama elected.
 
2013-09-06 01:07:16 PM  

omnibus_necanda_sunt: We face a choice of outcomes.

The first option: We allow what was a rapidly modernizing nation just three years ago, with a modicum of civil rights for most and a leader who showed a great deal of restraint in dealing with his people, to an illegitimate regime that clings to power over an economic backwater with a decimated infrastructure only by crushing the spirit of dissent with secret police and outright killings of its own people.

The second option: If the Al Qaeda-aligned factions gain control of Syria, they will do so through the capture of military hardware. If Assad is unable to destroy all 1000 tons of chemical weapons in his scattered depots before he is overcome, we will face an extremist movement with access to G-series and possibly V-series agents. These will be easily smuggled into Lebanon and threaten Israel.
Even if you despise Israeli influence in US politics, their citizens (many of whom vote against their right-wing elements) don't deserve death by nerve agent. Furthermore, an Israeli invasion of Lebanon and possibly even Syria itself will become almost inevitable, with concomitant civilian casualties and further regional conflict that will all but demand intervention by the United States.

My solution: a partition of Syria along the April 2013 lines, with land swaps. Assad will resign all government and military powers in perpetuity, submit to house arrest for three years, and allow the destruction of his chemical weapons stockpile in exchange for amnesty for him, his wife, and select senior government officials (who will be selected for their ability to pressure Assad into accepting the deal, rather than merit, though the latter is a plus).

Yaribiyah, Qamishli, Idlib, Hasakah, Deir ez-Zor, Kesab, and the region around Aleppo will be handed over to the Rebels, while the Rebels surrender the areas around Palmyra, Daraa, Nawa, Al-Zabadam, Damascus, Safita, Duraykish, and Homs.

A strict demilitarized zone will be enforced by Reaper drone, targe ...


I've noticed that most people are ignoring this provocative and interesting post... opting instead for the usual petty partisan poo-flinging.

Anyone care to comment on this guy's proposal?
 
2013-09-06 01:09:41 PM  
I am still waiting for a Senator to bravely vote "Absent."
 
2013-09-06 01:15:27 PM  
guy is a Woody Allen fan "Eighty percent of success is showing up "
 
2013-09-06 01:17:07 PM  

mediablitz: Gulper Eel: Mentat: How is that a fail?

tfa: "Markey said he cast his equivocal vote because he wants more time to analyze the situation. He said in an interview that the resolution was written too broadly"

If that's the problem, vote no and quit bullshiatting people.

Huh? Wanting to wait until he has more information means he has to vote no? That's, well that's stupid. He did the right thing.


No He didn't.   You Vote  "No" if it's being rushed through.

By not voting, he's allowing a yes vote to go through, and not representing the people who elected him.

/Votes Present.  Holy Fark.   Who does he think he is? Some magical communuty organizer?
 
2013-09-06 01:21:45 PM  

lockers: Nemo's Brother: Again, he would vote 'no' then. Voting present is what cowardly politicians who don't want to be wrong do. It helped Obama get elected. In a lot of issues, he was a clean slate because of his voting present.

LOL, wut?


They've convinced themselves that Obama never cast an important vote and that the majority of his votes (as opposed to the minute fraction of votes here in what we call the real world,) were "present."

And when you look into his present votes in context, you see that most were for fairly evident procedural reasons.
 
2013-09-06 01:22:14 PM  
All I know is that my gut says maybe.
 
2013-09-06 01:41:18 PM  
If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.
 
2013-09-06 01:41:42 PM  

Zulu_as_Kono: ILostMyPassword: Either foreign affairs genius or making stuff up... I have no way to judge.

I'd go with the latter. No one who knows anything would have characterized Syria as he did in "Option 1", and no one would say there are only two possible outcomes, either.


The progress displayed on the political and economic fronts during the brief thaw following Bashar al-Assad's succession were very promising, and his later methods of repression, while morally and ethically reprehensible, were more precise and had a much smaller body count than is typical for the region. Not that I'm the least bit of an apologist for the man. I'd like to see him dead. But the end of the conflict is more important than petty vengeance, and only by presenting him an escape hatch can we convince him to quit while he is ahead.

And while the post at first appears to present a false dichotomy, I feel that the two extreme cases are of more instructional value than a middle ground, of which there are too many possibilities to reasonably discuss before the thread times out.
 
2013-09-06 01:57:07 PM  

jigger: Why is "present" even an option?


Because cash is impersonal.
 
2013-09-06 02:03:04 PM  

Colour_out_of_Space: If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.


Yeah, "present" votes are often just political.

However - and please correct me if I'm wrong, because I'm operating from foggy memory and am probably totally off base - if this bill gets through both houses, is there some sort of congress-wide vote that has to take place? Or is that only in case of veto?

I'm just wondering if "present" was indeed his LAST opportunity to vote on the resolution. Because if there's a second round down the line, he might - POSSIBLY, not necessarily likely - have an opportunity to make a final decision or something?

//I think my congressional knowledge fell out of my head this morning
 
2013-09-06 03:29:24 PM  

Nemo's Brother: lockers: Nemo's Brother: Again, he would vote 'no' then. Voting present is what cowardly politicians who don't want to be wrong do. It helped Obama get elected. In a lot of issues, he was a clean slate because of his voting present.

LOL, wut?

Sorry. I need to site myself. If Jon Stewart doesn't cover a topic, most Total Farkers are clueless on the issue. I'll let you go Google your talking point rebuff to this, so take your time.

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2008/feb/13/obamas-p re sent-tension/


His voting record mattered little. Obama sky rocketed out of illinois. He had one term in the senate. He WAS a blank slate, but more importantly he is as savvy a politician I have seen. The people that voted him in did so because we were sick of republican bullshiat. Twice.
 
2013-09-06 03:29:30 PM  

BlastYoBoots: Colour_out_of_Space: If you choose not to decide, you still have made a choice.

Yeah, "present" votes are often just political.

However - and please correct me if I'm wrong, because I'm operating from foggy memory and am probably totally off base - if this bill gets through both houses, is there some sort of congress-wide vote that has to take place? Or is that only in case of veto?

I'm just wondering if "present" was indeed his LAST opportunity to vote on the resolution. Because if there's a second round down the line, he might - POSSIBLY, not necessarily likely - have an opportunity to make a final decision or something?

//I think my congressional knowledge fell out of my head this morning


Wha? This just passed out of committee. It will be voted on by the full senate, and Markey will have the chance to vote on it again then. The House will go through a similar process: Committee, then Floor (it may have to go through the Rules Committee as well, but we'll leave that bit out for now, the House has a weird intermediate step between Committee and Floor action). The full House votes. If the bills are different, there's a conference committee to hammer out the differences. That's small, and Markey will not be on it- they tend to put people who know about the issue there, and he just killed any chance he may have had. Depending on how large the differences are, the full House and full Senate may have to vote again, but usually they just do a procedural move that basically allows them to say, "it's close enough that our passing it the first time counts". Then it goes to the President for signature or veto. If the President vetos, it goes back to Congress, but they still act as individual Houses. There is never a time when they vote as a joint body.


A Dark Evil Omen: Stupid to dump on people for voting "present". It's a damned sight more ethical to state "Yes, I was here for the vote but I can't in good conscience vote either way due to lack of information/no strong feeling on the issue/etc" than to make a yes or no vote on something you aren't equipped to vote yes or no on. Easily one of the stupidest elements of American politics is the insistence that every politician have a strong stand on every issue regardless of whether they know anything about it or it affects them or their constituents. We'd be a lot better off if "present" was used a lot more often.


When you're a member of the House or Senate, all you have is "yes" or "no". You have to weigh the options, and if there's more good than bad in your view, you vote yes. If there's more bad than good, you vote no. No bill will ever be entirely to your liking- the work of a legislator is compromise and passing imperfect things that make the situation better. By refusing to engage in that process, which is what a present vote is, Markey is derelict in his duty to actually make the judgements he was elected to make. No, it ain't perfect. Lots of shiat ain't perfect. But it's his job to make those judgements based on available evidence, and to vote for imperfect things. If he can't handle that, he needs to find a different line of work.
 
2013-09-06 04:31:05 PM  

Mentat: How is that a fail?


Because voting "present" is Congress-speak for p@ssy.
 
2013-09-06 08:30:14 PM  

ToastmasterGeneral: Mentat: How is that a fail?

Because voting "present" is Congress-speak for p@ssy.


What's a passy?  Did you mean gassy?
 
2013-09-06 09:55:18 PM  
Remember, folks, if you don't run heedlessly into whatever situation, no matter how vague, incomplete, or even entirely manufactured, and immediately pick a side, you're clearly not Congressional material.

After all, it's not like we destroyed our domestic economy, lied to the world, and mocked our allies so we could start unnecessary wars in two different countries, only to spend the next decade or so blowing trillions (and misplacing billions) of dollars and thousands of lives on what amounted to an incredibly ill-considered response to a brutal terrorist attack on our own soil?

We've seen this before. I don't blame the guy for actually wanting more information before we once again start a war in yet another country, using a flimsy, half-baked pretext, simply so we could accomplish completely unrelated political and economic goals in the region.
 
2013-09-06 10:28:40 PM  

Lochsteppe: ToastmasterGeneral: Mentat: How is that a fail?

Because voting "present" is Congress-speak for p@ssy.

What's a passy?  Did you mean gassy?


it's an email address he left of the com
 
2013-09-07 05:56:18 AM  

Nemo's Brother: lockers: Nemo's Brother: Again, he would vote 'no' then. Voting present is what cowardly politicians who don't want to be wrong do. It helped Obama get elected. In a lot of issues, he was a clean slate because of his voting present.

LOL, wut?

Sorry. I need to site myself. If Jon Stewart doesn't cover a topic, most Total Farkers are clueless on the issue. I'll let you go Google your talking point rebuff to this, so take your time.

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2008/feb/13/obamas-p re sent-tension/


129 present votes of the more than 4000 cast. Do you even read the shiat you link?
 
2013-09-07 06:35:49 AM  
Markey is a Democrat's Democrat's Democrat.
He is right there with Pelosi, but he can't bring himself to vote for military action or against Obama, so there is nothing at all surprising about this vote.
 
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