Thursday, June 26, 2008

So What's It Gonna Be?

3 of our 4 Congressmen in Mississippi are Democrats. They vote with the Democratic caucus, but two of them-Gene Taylor, D-Bay St. Louis, and Snidely Whiplash, D-Langston, I mean, Travis Childers, D-Booneville, put themselves on the "Blue Dog Democrats" list, meaning they're independent of the party caucus on issues they disagree on, such as gun control, abortion, and taxes.

So here's my question. The current Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, D-Outer Space, wants to bring back the Fairness Doctrine, meaning that the government-through the FCC-can regulate political speech on the airwaves. She does this by stifling a vote on a bill introduced by Rep. Mike Pence, R-IN, called the Broadcaster's Freedom Act, which would ban the executive branch from ever being able to introduce such rules without an act of congress. Currently all 199 GOP members of the House have signed onto the discharge petition, yet no member of the Democrat party in that chamber has elected to do so.

When asked by Human Events' John Gizzi if the measure would ever be brought up, Pelosi responded in the negative, saying:

“No,” the Speaker replied, without hesitation. She added that “the interest in my caucus is the reverse” and that New York Democratic Rep. “Louise Slaughter has been active behind this [revival of the Fairness Doctrine] for a while now.”

Pelosi pointed out that, after it returns from its Fourth of July recess, the House will only meet for another three weeks in July and three weeks in the fall. There are a lot of bills it has to deal with before adjournment, she said, such as FISA and an energy bill.

“So I don’t see it [the Pence bill] coming to the floor,” Pelosi said.

“Do you personally support revival of the ‘Fairness Doctrine?’” I asked.

“Yes,” the speaker replied, without hesitation.

In other words, she favors the "Hush Rush" Act.

The issue is clear: Do you respect the rights of American citizens to engage in free speech over the airwaves without the oversight of the government? Or do you wish to stifle free speech, as your fellow caucus members do? You have signed onto a movement that purports itself to be independent of its political party, meaning that you don't subscribe to its more radical beliefs. Is there a belief more radical than regulating speech?

Notice I don't ask this question of Bennie Thompson, D-Pork, because I know where he stands. Heck, if there was any kind of alternative media in the 2nd district people might actually figure out how little he does (especially since he gave up a seat on the Ag Committee to chair homeland security-mainly to send police cars to the crime-burdened hamlet of Bolton, police department consisting of eight people). But you guys? You're supposed to look out for your constituents over your party. And I don't think they look to highly on the efforts of the federal government to shut people up who criticize them.

But hey, enjoy your summer. I will too-until the thought police come to get me.

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