Saturday, July 21, 2007

When It Comes To Texas Senators, The Glass Is Half Full -- Of Something

By Manifesto Joe

While checking for an update on HR 2669 -- a bill that would slash subsidies to the firms that lend to college students, and increase the programs that directly benefit the students themselves -- I ran across an intriguing voting trend by the senators who represent my home state. It's a good news/bad news sort of thing.

This week the Senate voted 78-18 to send this very fine reform of higher education, described in two previous reports on this and one other blog, to the House for negotiations on a final bill. I was, at first, astonished by the veto-proof majority in the Senate, despite a possible veto by Bush. Second, I was more astonished that both Republican Sens. Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn, the Lone Star State's upper-middle-aged Ken and Barbie duo, voted with the majority. That's the good news. Was sanity prevailing at last?

Now for the bad news. The GOP tried to amend this to cut the reduction of the subsidy from $18 billion in the base bill down to $15.65 billion (How do they arrive at something so exacting?) and, predictably, make up for the difference by putting less money into the Pell Grants for poor students.

Fortunately, this failed, 35-62. But Hutchison and Cornyn voted with the minority that time, in an apparent Republican attempt to placate the bankers who will lose a lot of loan-shark revenue if this bill becomes law.

More bad news is that, as reported earlier, the bill didn't quite pass by a veto-proof majority in the House. And Hutchison and Cornyn have covered their prissy butts on both sides.

Manifesto Joe Is An Underground Writer Living In Texas.


dr sardonicus said...

A nice bit of deft ass-covering by the Senators from the great state of Texas.

Lately in Tennessee, our Senators believe it makes a nice stepping-stone to the Presidency. (Al Gore would have been a good President, but the Supreme Court wouldn't let him.)

Manifesto Joe said...

These two make me nostalgic for the kind of blatantly corrupt cornpone politicians we had back when semi-populist Dixiecrats dominated politics here. Those sleazebags at least had a bit of style. These sixtysomething Ken and Barbie types are antiseptic.