Posts Tagged ‘Hatch’
In 2010, one of the first casualties among moderate Republicans was Utah Senator Bob Bennett, who could not muster enough support among GOP State Convention delegates to even give him an opportunity to be on the primary ballot. It was a stunning blow to the establishment and there was immediate speculation that Utah’s other Senator – Orrin Hatch – was next.
However, Hatch saw the hand writing on the wall and has been, as they say, “workin’ it hard” for the last 18 months to ensure he doesn’t suffer the same fate as Bennett.
It worked. In Saturday’s Utah State GOP Convention, Hatch not only received enough votes to get into the primary, but came within a hairs-breadth of winning the nomination outright (60% of the vote is needed to win outright, Hatch reportedly received just over 59%).
Here’s the headline of the AP story: Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch forced into primary fight
And here is the lede of the story:
U.S. Sen. Sen. Orrin Hatch has been forced into a primary fight for his seventh term.
Hatch failed to get the needed 60 percent of delegate votes during Saturday’s Utah Republican convention that would have made him the outright GOP nominee.
A more accurate headline might have been: Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch Happily Gets into primary fight
Say what you will about Sen. Hatch – he recognized what he was facing and has done a pretty remarkable job of turning his fortunes around in a pretty short amount of time.
The bad news for those who opposed Hatch in the convention is that if they couldn’t beat him there, they aren’t going to beat him anywhere.
The WSJ has a great editorial today about the Senate moving to add two seats to the U.S. House. The bill to give D.C. a Member of Congress and to give Utah a Member of Congress passed a cloture vote yesterday. The five Republicans who joined bill sponsor Orrin Hatch (R-UT) were Sens. Cochran (MS), Collins (ME), Lugar (IN), Murkowski (AK), Snowe (ME), Specter (PA), Voinovich (OH).
For me, the surprises were Murkowski and Cochran and Lugar. I’ve given up on the ladies from Maine and Specter from PA. I do believe that this will become known as Hatch’s Folly.
Here is the conclusion of the editorial:
More important, the legislation runs afoul of the plain language of the Constitution, which provides that House members shall be chosen “by the People of the several States” and stipulates that the District of Columbia is not a state.
In 1960, Congress proposed a Constitutional amendment giving residents of the capital the right to vote for President. The 23rd Amendment was ratified the following year. The District already sends a nonvoting delegate to the House, but if Congress wishes to grant it full representation, it should do so by amending, not ignoring, the Constitution.
For years there has been an effort to give the District of Columbia actual voting representation in the U.S. Congress. They don’t, because the Constitution is clear in Article 1 Section 2:
The House of Representatives shall be composed of members chosen every second year by the people of the several states, and the electors in each state shall have the qualifications requisite for electors of the most numerous branch of the state legislature.
The problem for supporters of D.C. getting a seat in Congress is that D.C. is not a state.
However, Republican Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah and Democrat Senator Joe Lieberman of Connecticut have a bill that is slated to go to the Senate floor this week.
“I think the votes are there. I think it’s going to pass the Senate,” said Sen. Orrin G. Hatch (R-Utah), who is sponsoring the bill with Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman (I-Conn.).
The trade-off for Republicans in giving the Democrats what will be a sure seat in Congress is that Utah receives an additional seat in Congress as well. So Hatch and Lieberman are asking Members of the House and Senate to ignore the Constitution to add two seats to the U.S. House.
It’s clearly unconstitutional, and every Member of t he House and Senate should think back to the oath that they made “to uphold the Constitution.” This is legislation that deserves to be defeated.