Straight Talk, My Friends
At this morning’s Senate hearing on the D.C. Voting Rights Act, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Sen. George Voinovich (R-Ohio) were the only Republicans in attendance and asking questions. McCain was the only one of them who voted nay, and he gave two reasons. The first was that the proposed compromise that would give D.C. voting rights while giving Utah a fourth seat in Congress was unfair to other fast-growing states. The second was that McCain didn’t want to pass a bill that constitutional scholars are still tussling over “and then have the Supreme Court decide whether or not it’s constitutional.”
This is a problem. What would happen if — a totally random example here — a senator introduced a campaign finance law that, according to many constitutional scholars and the president of the United States, violated the First Amendment? What if the Supreme Court had to decide whether or not the law was constitutional? That would be crazy. A Republican who wrote a law like that probably couldn’t even win Indiana.