No difference between the parties?

We like to complain and mock and make fun of Democrats for their timidity, careful language and the general right-shift of the past decade or more, but the truth is, as Bob Geiger points out, there is a distinct difference between the parties if you take a closer look. That's what Bob's good at:

"After over six months of wrangling... the Senate yesterday narrowly passed more funding for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP). The measure, which passed by a vote of 51-49, provides $3.3 billion in funding for fiscal year 2007 for this vital program that helps the elderly and disabled heat their homes in the winter."

The Democrats, all of whom voted for the funding were forced to find 5 Republicans to get it passed. Cynically, it was only cold-weather Republicans who signed on...

As for last year's 4 failed attempts to fund the program, Geiger believes this should help bring party distinctions into sharp relief: "A 60-vote majority was needed and each time the bills failed by 10 votes or less. The important thing to remember when you think both major parties are the same, is that in all four of those instances, almost every Democrat voted for heating assistance for the elderly and disabled and nearly every Republican voted against it, even with winter looming." (

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