Ladies and Gentlemen, first to appear on our stage tonight is Dancing Joe. Where he comes from, no one knows. He flips, he flops and he rolls on his belly like a reptile. I can guarantee that at the end of his act, you will question his judgement and his sanity. You won't have to guess his motives for playing the clown. They will be perfectly clear or I'll give you your money back.
First, Joe swings to the left, then he marches down the center - rat-ta-rat-rat, rat-ta-rat-rat - and now he's swinging to the right - rat-ta-rat-rat. You'd never know this by looking at him but Joe the Clown used to be a Democrat. I know it's hard to believe but he was indeed. He was even a strong advocate of universal health care. When he campaigned for vice-president back in 2000, he proposed allowing the uninsured to buy into Medicare and Medicaid. And as recently as this past September - that's 2009 - he once again endorsed the plan.
But wait, Joe changed his mind. Quite a shocker, eh? When his plan was added to Senate health care legislation, Little Joe squirmed out the back door and said he wouldn't support it. Swinging more to the right, he said he would invoke some kind of thing called the power of a one-man filibuster. Guess that means he can screw you, American people, by keeping the measure from even getting to the senate floor.
This little man is after blood, or money, or blood money. He seems pretty ticked off at his former buddies in the Democratic party. The ones in his home state of Connecticut knocked him off the primary ticket in 2006 but he was able to wiggle and slither his way back to the Senate as an Independent.
But wait, his anger growing by leaps and bounds, the little clown not only endorses Republican John McCain for president, he rides the circuit for him and puts on an act at the Republican National Convention. But, petty little ego-maniacs are like Pit Bulls. They can't let go. And boy Joe, being beyond vindictive, decides to stick it to the Democrats - where it'll really hurt. He'll do everything in his power to knock the president's health care agenda right off the tracks.
"Screw you President Obama. Screw you Democrats," he yells as he flies through the air. "And while I'm screwing everyone, screw you 47 million Americans. So what you won't have health insurance? Why should I care? I've gotten over a million buckaroos from the insurance industry over the last 21 years, so just eat your cake and shut up."
Bill Press, who provided the facts but not the melodrama, says:
(The Democrats) should have thrown him out of the Senate Democratic Caucus last year. They didn't. So now's the time. Toss Lieberman out of the caucus. Strip him of his chairmanship of the Homeland Security Committee. Then tell Lieberman that all legislation bearing his name has been put on permanent hold, and all funds earmarked for Connecticut have been re-assigned to Mississippi. He and his constituents must know there's a price to pay for disloyalty.
Next priority: Kill the filibuster! Or at least modify it so it can't be used as a one-man assassination squad.
Press reviews the changes in the filibuster laws over the years - actually quite interesting - and he ends with this zinger.
Ironically, the last attempt to fix the filibuster was made in 1995 by Sen. Tom Harkin. Harkin's measure would, over time, have gradually reduced the number of votes necessary to end a filibuster. It was a sensible proposal. Here's the kicker: His co-sponsor was Joe Lieberman.