I called Senator Murray's office 2 weeks ago asking for an explanation as to why she voted against the Senate resolution supporting the troops and denouncing MoveOn.org over the General "Betray Us" ad. I was told by her Seattle office that it was a free speech issue. When I asked how that could be since nobody was telling MoveOn.org they could not say what they did, the story changed to the Seattle office did not have an official explanation but one would be posted on the Senator's web page. I expressed my doubts that anything would ever be posted on the internet. I was told I could also call the Washington D.C. office for an explanation. So I called Washington D.C. and was told that the reason for the no vote was because Senator Murray never votes for something that singles out a specific group or person for condemnation. Never? Never I was told.
So I kept looking on the internet for that explanation and two weeks later still nothing. Then I see where Senator Murray is one of the signors of a letter to Clear Channel condemning Rush Limbaugh for a comment about phony soldiers. I do not listen to Rush Limbaugh, I have no idea what the "phony soldier" kerfuffle is about.
In a letter prepared Friday by Senate leaders, Democrats continued to blast conservative radio host Rush Limbaugh’s description of antiwar troops as “phony soldiers,” setting up a parallel to Republican outrage over MoveOn.org’s recent Iraq ad.
During his Wednesday broadcast, Limbaugh responded to a caller who identified himself as an active-duty member of the Army and said troops who criticize the war are not “real soldiers.” Limbaugh responded in agreement, rousing Democrats’ ire.
The letter will be sent early next week by Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Caucus Vice Chairman Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Caucus Secretary Patty Murray (D-Wash.). An accompanying statement noted that the letter would not be sent Friday so that other senators, “including those who have recently spoken up against attacks on our troops’ patriotism,” still have time to sign on.
That strategy mirrors a growing call in the liberal blogosphere to push Republicans to repudiate Limbaugh’s comments. If GOP lawmakers who excoriated MoveOn.org for its “General Betray Us” ad fail to create distance from Limbaugh, the reasoning goes, they would be exposed to charges of hypocrisy.
So I called Senator Murray's Seattle office today. First I asked about the explanation for the original vote against the troops and for MoveOn.org. I was told that was on the web. I said I had not seen it but had been told by the Washington D.C. office the reason was Senator Murray does not vote for anything that singles out a specific group or person. The office staff told me it should be on the web but what I told her was not the real reason. She then looked for it and sure enough it was not on the web. I am then told it was not a press release but an email from the Washington D.C. office. She then reads me part of the email that says the reason for the vote is because Senator Murray does not vote for things that single out specific people or groups. I told the staff member, yes I know, I just told you that. It appears Senator Murray may not be the dumbest person working in her office like I assumed.
So then I told the staff member the reason I called was because of the letter Senator Murray signed that singles out Rush Limbaugh. I asked how can the Senator reconcile signing this letter with her earlier vote. I was told she had no idea what I was talking about but would email Washington D.C. I am not going to hold my breathe waiting for that answer.
Is there some Clintonian wiggle room where Senator Murray can send a letter as part of the Democratic leadership criticizing someone and still say she will not vote for a resolution singling out a person or group? I guess, that depends on your definition of Senate. I guess it depends if your stance is criticizing a specific person is beneath the Senate but not the Democratic leadership. Is there an explanation for telling someone there will be an explanation on the web and two weeks later there still is not and then when you call asking about it you are told there is one on the web but there still is not and then when you tell them what the Washington D.C. office said and they say that is not the real explanation but then they look up the real explanation and read from it and it is exactly what you just told them. I guess that depends on your definition of incompetent.