Warren, Rubio, Sessions, and context

So, as any reader of this blog surely knows, Elizabeth Warren got shut down in the Senate for reading a letter from Coretta Scott King criticizing Attorney General nominee, Senator Jeff Sessions, for his actions on race.  Sure, it’s fine to have Senators respect each other, but in this context, it’s not about Senator Sessions, but about, potential Attorney General Sessions.  You know, the federal official charged with enforcing civil rights.  What civil rights leaders think about him, might, you know, be relevant.  (More from Chait).

Anyway, last night a FB friend (spouse of a colleague) posted this link, “Marco Rubio Brilliantly Defends GOP’s Silencing Of Sen. Warren With Speech On Senate Floor,” praised Rubio’s call for civility, and remarked that she didn’t want to start a political debate.  For obvious reasons– most notably that the post basically uses Rubio’s call for civility as an attack on Warren and a defense of Sessions– I did not want to let that go.  I replied with explaining the broader context and defending Warren.

You’ll be shocked to learn that FB friend deleted my post and messaged me to complain.  And refused to take ownership of the very partisan tone of the page she posted (I pointed out that she could easily have posted the youtube link).  Sure, on their own, Rubio’s words are great.  But life does not happen in a vacuum.  Rubio’s response was directly in defense of shutting down legitimate criticism of Sessions.  And the webpage in which this was shared was blatantly partisan and political.

Damn it, don’t post political things and then say, “I don’t want a political debate on my timeline.”  It’s like posting a video of Rodney King saying “can’t we all just get along,” but the video is embedded in a page defending the officers who beat him up and then you say, “Rodney’s words are great.  No discussion of racism or police brutality, please.”  I don’t think so.

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About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State http://faculty.chass.ncsu.edu/shgreene

4 Responses to Warren, Rubio, Sessions, and context

  1. rgbact says:

    Meh, Democrats took a full day to basically call a 20 year senior senator a racist. Sounds like McConnell is trying to clean up this incivility. The parts I saw, senators were allowed to read random disparaging tweets about Sessions. This is fairly gross..Anyway, sounds like Republicans are looking to give Warren all the attention she wants.

    • Steve Greene says:

      Is there something incompatible with being a 20-year Senator and being a racist? What’s ridiculous to me is that if Sessions were a sitting governor, this would not be an issue at all, but it’s because he’s a Senator.

      • rgbact says:

        Well yeah, usually theres some basic decorum among senators. People force themselves to be cordial, even to people they despise. Hillary Clinton was confirmed by 94 to 2, even though many hated her. But I guess the Left wants their tantrum. A red state Dem calling someone who wants voter ID and less immigration a racist….seems like a weird move though.

  2. R. Jenrette says:

    Really odd that I could not find the entire Rule 19. The only thing i got was this:

    http://www.rules.senate.gov,
    http://www.rules.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=RuleXIX
    We would like to show you a description here but the site won’t allow us.

    Don’t you just love transparency? Who knows what’s covered (or not) by that rule. It has sections, not just the part that was applied to Elizabeth Warren.

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