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Melancon con game continues with scripted votes

Last week we got another example of why his job title might be “Member of the House of Representatives,” but a better description going by what Rep. Charlie Melancon actually does is “con man.” (Con Man Melancon, has nice ring to it, huh?)

Melancon has built his congressional career on trying to appear as one thing to his constituents, but actually behaving as another. The greatest disconnect between his desired image and actions is his self-appointed status as a “Blue Dog,” supposedly fiscally conservative Democrats. Yet to date he has been a total Lap Dog when it comes to approving of trillions in budget-busting, deficit-escalating spending at the behest of liberals, his boss Speaker Nancy Pelosi and overlord Pres. Barack Obama.

Yet another chapter got added to his continuing deception when dealing with H.R. 3200, Obama’s attempt to nationalize health care by creating a subsidized public option that would drive the private sector out of the business. Part of that at this point includes an option to publicly fund elective abortions, an idea resisted by a healthy majority of Melancon’s constituents. (It leaves the option for the plan to do so, which no doubt under Obama would occur, and would require the same for federally subsidized private plans to do so.) And Melancon greased the skids for it to happen.

This happened because, at first, an amendment was offered and succeeded in Melancon’s House Energy and Commerce Committee that would have amended the bill to ban, as is current practice, federal dollars to going to fund abortions directly or indirectly. Apparently, committee Chairman Rep. Henry Waxman realized at that time he lacked the numbers to stop it. While Democrats have a solid majority on the committee, several term themselves as “Blue Dogs” and were skeptical about public funding of abortion and of the high cost of the bill as a whole.

Forced to have a vote, Waxman voted for the amendment which, while passing it, allowed him to bring it up for reconsideration later. Melancon voted for this, also. As the committee moved on, a Democrat against it who had been absent showed up and another claimed he had “accidentally” voted the wrong way and wanted reconsideration. Waxman asked for it and got a majority, including Melancon, to vote for that. This time, with three new votes, two, flipping, against the bill, what had been a four-vote victory for it turned into a one vote defeat, with Melancon again voting for it. Later, the entire bill passed, again with Melancon and several other Democrats voting against it but with more than enough others to pass the entire thing.

Translation: Waxman gave orders to all committee Democrats that an exact few, including Melancon, could vote for the amendment and against the bill, just few enough so the bill would pass. Regardless whether the first vote was for show or because of miscalculation, had everybody who on that vote kept their next vote the same, reconsideration never would have occurred successfully. But Waxman ordered Melancon to support reconsideration, and like the lap dog that he is, he did along with others.

The flim-flam from Melancon comes from his trumpeting to the world about how he voted against the bill not only because of its cost, but because of the abortion provision. But if he was being honest and meant what he said, he would not have voted for reconsideration – he knew what would happen. Either that, or he is a stupid man (not that big of a stretch to consider given some of his past statements) after having been in the House for over four years to not to know what he was doing. Stupid, disingenuous, or both are not traits we want to see in our Congressmen, yet Melancon certainly fit the bill on one or both with these antics.

So this is how Melancon tries to have his cake and eat it, too – do something symbolic to spin enough to please his constituents and to salve his conscience (if he is actually telling the truth about his beliefs, which, again unless he’s stupid, don’t square with his actions) yet allow his masters that he slavishly serves to succeed with their agenda with his help. This does wrong by his constituents, the real objects that he should be serving.

This incident leaves Melancon wide open to charges of hypocrisy and incompetence. Hopefully, future electoral opponents of his will take note of this, explain the situation to potential voters, and not allow him to create a false picture of himself to the public. Thus the Melancon con game continues.

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