Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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December 15, 2010

KYL'S CONCERN FOR HIS CHRISTMAS VACATION.... Given all the work the Senate still has to do before wrapping up for the year, it's a given that members will be on the job next week. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), to his credit, has said it's possible the chamber will be voting the following week, too.

Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) seems chiefly concerned with the holidays. (via Rachel Slajda)

Mr. Kyl said that Mr. Reid's effort to do too much was inconsiderate of the Senate as an institution and also of senators, staff and their families hoping to celebrate Christmas. [...]

Mr. Kyl added, " It is impossible to do all of the things that the majority leader laid out without doing -- frankly, without disrespecting the institution and without disrespecting one of the two holiest of holidays for Christians and the families of all of the Senate, not just the senators themselves but all of the staff."

There are a few angles to consider here.

First, no one is talking about having senators or their aides work on Christmas, "one of the two holiest of holidays for Christians." I'm not a theologian, but I'm comfortable with the observation that modern Christianity places no spiritual significance on Dec. 27 through Dec. 31. The "respect" Kyl demands for his religious holiday appears to be intact.

Second, Kyl might want to take a peek outside his DC bubble -- the vast majority of American workers will be on the job the week after Christmas, and places of business nationwide will be open. (Does Kyl think all of these employers are "disrespecting" Christianity?) Asking senators to work when most of their constituents are working hardly seems unreasonable.

And third, the Senate is perfectly capable of getting its work done before Christmas, but that appears unlikely because Kyl's Republican colleagues are deliberately bringing the legislative process to a crawl. It's not Reid's fault the GOP is forcing needless, petty delays.

As it turns out, Kyl just happens to be the Minority Whip, which in theory puts him in a position of some influence. Instead of complaining about Reid, maybe he should have a chat with some of his obstructionist colleagues.

Steve Benen 8:00 AM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (35)

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Comments

I hope Kyl's sock is filled with coal this Christmas. Nauseating...

Posted by: stevio on December 15, 2010 at 8:03 AM | PERMALINK

If he wants the days around Christmas off, I suggest he do it without any pay, like those of us unemployed will have to do unless he and the rest of the RepbuliConfederates deign to allow a few crumbs of cash to flow our way.
Not enough bad shit can happen to these people. And I mean REALLY BAD SHIT!!!

Posted by: c u n d gulag on December 15, 2010 at 8:06 AM | PERMALINK
There are a few angles to consider here.

Thank goodness one of them isn't named Sharron.

Posted by: navamske on December 15, 2010 at 8:08 AM | PERMALINK

How tragic that the War on Christmas has claimed yet another victim: Beezelbub.

Posted by: walt on December 15, 2010 at 8:11 AM | PERMALINK

Gosh these macho GOP daddies sure can be big crybabies! Waaaaaaah! Look out, Harry! Little Johnny's gonna tell Santa and/or Jesus on you!

Posted by: ManOutOfTime on December 15, 2010 at 8:11 AM | PERMALINK

We won't even get into the fact here that Jesus, according to most biblical scholars, was born somewhere around the beginning of October, 6 months after John the Baptist, not December 25. Seems like celebrating someone's birthday 3 months after the fact is more disrespectful.

Posted by: Steve on December 15, 2010 at 8:12 AM | PERMALINK

Hey Kyl, one of the big items is the START treaty that YOU have been delaying for months!

Posted by: MW on December 15, 2010 at 8:18 AM | PERMALINK

The Christians stole 25 Dec from Mithras who was born, according to the Mithrians, on that day. If indeed Jesus existed he was probably born in the spring ... Lambs and other baby animals being born then and those self same babies being mentioned as in the fields about the same time as his birth. But then again, there is no real evidence he ever existed, the only ancient source Tacitus which mentions him was written far after the fact, everything else was written by the Christians who were notorious liars, inventing "facts" to fit their opinion of the way things should be rather than are.

Posted by: KurtRex1453 on December 15, 2010 at 8:23 AM | PERMALINK

Merry effin' Purloined Winter Solstice Commercial Celebration.
Kyl is just pissed off he might miss the after Xmas sales and an opportunity to pick up a 3-D TEE VEE cheap.

Posted by: John R on December 15, 2010 at 8:29 AM | PERMALINK

To be fair, the song 12 Days of Xmas comes from the period between Christmas Day and Epiphany or Twelfth Night. I hear Kyl loves his lords a'leaping...

Posted by: Todd for Vermont House on December 15, 2010 at 8:30 AM | PERMALINK

This is the mouth-breathing knuckle-dragger to whom, according to David Broder, Barack Obama had to prove his "sincerity" on the START treaty.

Posted by: Jim on December 15, 2010 at 8:30 AM | PERMALINK

Kyl is one of the Senate's leading obstructionists, and he will do the same thing in the next session. And he demands the Senate adourn early because he wants to go home. Keep that lying bastard in D.C. as long as possible.

Posted by: max on December 15, 2010 at 8:31 AM | PERMALINK

If the senate wasn't broken because of the obstruction of Republicans like Kyl maybe the senate could get its workd done early. The only lever the filibuster leaves Reid is working around and through holidays to put pressure on Kyl and his gang to do what they were elected to do.

Posted by: Ron Byers on December 15, 2010 at 8:33 AM | PERMALINK

This is what I have been saying all along. Threaten to work through 5pm Christmas Eve (ending a lot earlier than many in this country will on that date) and have them back in session Monday morning, bright and early. If this does not result in a loosening of the hold the Republicans have over the agenda then carry out the threat. Sure, it's a too-little-too-late display of gamesmanship, but what the heck? If you served with a whimper, at least go out with a bang. I feel fairly confident that if the senators' ski trips, and stays at Club Med are put at risk, something will get accomplished.

"You want to go home? Sit down, shut up, and let's get through this crap."

And if any of the departing and remaining "Blew Dawgs" have anything to say about it, whack them on their noses with a rolled up DADT repeal.

Posted by: Perspecticus on December 15, 2010 at 8:43 AM | PERMALINK

"...maybe he should have a chat with some of his obstructionist colleagues."

Kyl could start by having a little talk with himself. He's been the chief ofstructionist for two freakin' years. Now that the work still hasn't been finished, he has no one to thank but his own sorry ass.

Posted by: azportsider on December 15, 2010 at 8:43 AM | PERMALINK

Mithras aside, Christmas isn't anywhere near the holiest of Christian holidays. Easter/Pascha is hands down the the most important holy day on the liturgical calendar and Good Friday comes right after. I'm pretty sure that other days like Ascension and Transfiguration outrank Christmas too.

Posted by: tom on December 15, 2010 at 8:50 AM | PERMALINK

I never spent a Christmas with my family when I was in the Army. Christmas 1989 for me was spent patrolling Panama City during Operation Just Cause.

There are men and women in the military today who won't get to see their family this Christmas. And they've have had to sacrifice many of Christmas for too long.

Suck it up, Kyl, you pussy.

Posted by: 2Manchu on December 15, 2010 at 8:52 AM | PERMALINK

Kyl (what the hell kind of name is THAT?) and his ilk remind me of another senate. Toga wrapped graybeards, lounging in the baths, and serviced by nubile boys and girls. (Did the horse also wear a toga, or was he nekkid?)

Posted by: DAY on December 15, 2010 at 9:05 AM | PERMALINK

Don't they have air service between Texas and DC? He could always fly his family here for the holidays if he wants to be with them. I'm sure he's not hurting for money.

Posted by: peej on December 15, 2010 at 9:07 AM | PERMALINK

oops...make that Arizona and DC (not Texas).

Posted by: peej on December 15, 2010 at 9:08 AM | PERMALINK

The sad part is that we can not exchange Kyl and his buddies on Boxing Day.

Posted by: berttheclock on December 15, 2010 at 9:14 AM | PERMALINK

Remember, less than 60 years ago, before Christmas became such a big commercial holiday, Congress met on that day.

Posted by: Roy Crawford on December 15, 2010 at 9:18 AM | PERMALINK

let's face it people...he really wants to protect the celebration of Kwanzaa, which begins on 12-26..who knew?!?!

Posted by: ghostryder on December 15, 2010 at 9:20 AM | PERMALINK

As I have written in several posts in the past regarding 'breaking the filibuster'......THIS is what you do. Make them stay after school! Or better yet....break out the cots..... this is called the Filibuster "Old School"............ Hell, I'd have them filibuster on Christmas Eve.... maybe they can filibuster the 911 Responders Health Bill, now we have a twofer.... public attention on what the Reps are actually blocking.

Posted by: mike Reilly on December 15, 2010 at 9:20 AM | PERMALINK

Breaking News on Fox: The war on Christmas reaches all the way to the Senate, with the godless Democrats disrespecting the high holy holidays and all good Christians everywhere.

---

PS: Heck, even Jesus disrespected the Sabbath in order to get his work done:

Mark 3: 1 Another time Jesus went into the synagogue, and a man with a shriveled hand was there. 2 Some of them were looking for a reason to accuse Jesus, so they watched him closely to see if he would heal him on the Sabbath. 3 Jesus said to the man with the shriveled hand, “Stand up in front of everyone.”

4 Then Jesus asked them, “Which is lawful on the Sabbath: to do good or to do evil, to save life or to kill?” But they remained silent.

5 He looked around at them in anger and, deeply distressed at their stubborn hearts, said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was completely restored. 6 Then the Pharisees went out and began to plot with the Herodians how they might kill Jesus.

Posted by: delNorte on December 15, 2010 at 9:22 AM | PERMALINK

Has anyone ever determined the cost to the taxpayers of the Repub go slow. perhaps Kyl should be put on leave without pay, and any others who hold up the peoples work.
How are they coming along with the roster of republicans who are giving up their government health insurance?

Posted by: js on December 15, 2010 at 9:35 AM | PERMALINK

Yes Senator Kyl, you can stick the holiest of holy days up your holy hole..

For all the bark, who knew Jesus day (1) would be such a touchstone?

Posted by: Trollop on December 15, 2010 at 9:42 AM | PERMALINK

Mithras aside, Christmas isn't anywhere near the holiest of Christian holidays. Easter/Pascha is hands down the the most important holy day on the liturgical calendar and Good Friday comes right after. I'm pretty sure that other days like Ascension and Transfiguration outrank Christmas too.

Just so. And that's not counting those sects that denounce Christmas (with some justice) as unbiblical and pagan.

Posted by: Chet on December 15, 2010 at 10:41 AM | PERMALINK

I'm with Kyl.

We need to return to 12 days of drunken revelry starting Christmas Eve.

Landlord fill the flowing bowl...

Posted by: jamie_2002 on December 15, 2010 at 10:55 AM | PERMALINK

Day,
That nekkid horse would be chairing some RepubliConfederate committe in today's world.

Posted by: c u n d gulag on December 15, 2010 at 11:04 AM | PERMALINK

Jon Kyl is an infant.

Posted by: MysteriousTraveller on December 15, 2010 at 11:28 AM | PERMALINK

Doesn't anyone have something kind to say about this obstructionist shithead. He believes the Republican Party is more important than the
Republic, which could be said for all the Republican Caucus. Why should these clowns be taken serious? Kyl could disappear into a hole and we would be the better for his leaving, he and his head the size of a beer keg.

Posted by: Ted76 on December 15, 2010 at 12:10 PM | PERMALINK
First, no one is talking about having senators or their aides work on Christmas, "one of the two holiest of holidays for Christians." I'm not a theologian, but I'm comfortable with the observation that modern Christianity places no spiritual significance on Dec. 27 through Dec. 31.

I am not a theologian, but I have enough of a grasp of the subject to be aware that in most modern Christian churches the season of Christmas (or Christmastide), to which special spiritual significance is attached, starts extends from Christmas Eve through at least early January.

If you wanted to say that most modern Christians don't consider the period from Dec. 27 through Dec. 31 part of a period in which secular work is inappropriate, then you'd be on solid ground. But when you say that its not part of a period with special spiritual significance in modern Christianity that just shows you have no idea what you are talking about.

Posted by: cmdicely on December 15, 2010 at 1:36 PM | PERMALINK

What? Republicans work?!?! OMG?!?!

As for the Holiday season and cmdicely: traditionally they are considered the twelve days of Christmas, finishing on Jan 5th, with "Dreikönige" (Epiphany) on the 6th, but no civilized nation on the earth gives it's population 13 days in a row off for a holiday, so what is good for the goose is good for the gander.

So, yes, those days have spiritual significance, but this does not keep well over 99% of working americans from going to work over this time. The next time your garbageman comes in the freezing cold between the 27th and the 31st to pick up the trash you have placed on the curb, think about this. If a christian trashman can do this and still have the "christmas spirit", then so can a senator, with his cushy paycheck and perks without end.

So, I find your argument to be absolute crap.

Posted by: bonncaruso on December 16, 2010 at 5:04 AM | PERMALINK

We’ve come too far to renege to the demands of the lunatic fringe!

Posted by: Alia Krieg on March 10, 2011 at 9:12 PM | PERMALINK




 

 

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