Some might denigrate what Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) did today as political theater, but they'd be wrong. He ripped up the Judiciary Committee rules during his statement. It was a visual representation, a literal rendering of what Republicans in Congress have done with long-standing rules, standards of law-making, and the Constitution itself.
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) decided his ego needed some Trump-stroking, so he broke multiple Judiciary Committee Rules to bring a bill to the floor that was destined to die in the House of Representatives anyhow. THAT is political theater, and of the absolute worst kind. Designed to inflict cruelty and trauma on the most vulnerable in our society, for the sole purpose of solidifying one's place as first in line to lick the Racist-In-Chief's boots.
Ben Oriebeke, a law clerk in the Senate, narrated the proceedings on Twitter, and the scene he described was truly stomach-turning. Here are some of those tweets.
A partial transcript of Sen. Leahy's statement is below.
Why? Why are we so eager to discard our norms and principals? Apparently the answer is for legislation that at its core, gives the president what he wants in his political war on immigration. It allows for the indefinite detention of immigration children, and ratchets up the cruelty against refugees seeking asylum, and it's as partisan and short-sighted as it gets.
This is supposed to be the Senate Judiciary Committee. Not the Donald Trump Committee.
After more Democratic senators made their statements against the bill, and the fact that the rules were being treated with such disregard, Graham cut off debate and called for a vote, breaking yet another rule. Democratic senators protested this additional, completely blatant foul from Graham. Apparently to no avail.
Republicans have absolutely ruined government. Destroyed it. Mission accomplished.
Update: (Karoli) And here is Lindsey Graham breaking the rules to allow concentration camps. Is anyone surprised he's been dubbed #LeningradLindsey?