Video: Dem Senate candidate in IA blames filibusters for budget failure

posted at 11:21 am on March 5, 2013 by Ed Morrissey

Michael Warren at the Weekly Standard provides this nice catch of some serious ignorance on the part of a major candidate for Iowa’s open Senate seat.  Apparently, Bruce Braley doesn’t know much about the job he’s seeking in attempting to fill the seat Tom Harkin’s retirement leaves open in the 2014 election.  When asked by a local TV news reporter why the Democratic-controlled Senate hasn’t passed a budget in almost four years, Braley insisted that the filibuster prevented Democrats like Harkin from producing one:

“How is that possible? One word,” Braley replied. “The filibuster.”

Braley blamed Senate Republicans for holding up business by imposing a 60-vote supermajority on moving forward on the debate. “[It's] incredibly frustrating to everyone in the House, Democrat and Republican,” he said. “And I know it’s incredibly frustrating to Senator Harkin.”

Braley then goes on to lecture at length about the need for filibuster reform, but he’s ignorant of one important fact: filibusters don’t apply to budgetary bills.  Budgets don’t need anything more than a simple majority to pass.  In fact, that fact got intense national attention during the final stage of the ObamaCare debate, when the Senate used the budget mechanism to pass a House bill that bypassed the opportunity for Republicans to filibuster, in a process known as ironically known as “reconciliation.”

Actually, the one word that applies here is “obstructionism,” only by the majority.  The Senate hasn’t had its budgets filibustered — it hasn’t even proposed a budget in nearly four years.  The Senate Budget Committee hasn’t voted one onto the Senate calendar, a strategy led by the Democrat in charge of the chamber, Majority Leader Harry Reid, in order to keep spending at the inflated baseline of the FY2010 budget through an endless series of continuing resolutions.  It’s a cynical and dangerous strategy that has led to a series of fiscal “cliffs” that has damaged the US credit rating and its standing among investors, suppressing job creation and economic growth.

Maybe Braley should study how the Senate works before lecturing the rest of us on the need for “reform,” especially when it’s his own party that has obstructed the normal-order budget process for the last four years.  Iowans who want a change for reform should not cast a vote for a candidate that rewards Reid for his refusal to budget normally.  And kudos to the reporter who actually challenged Braley on the Senate’s failure to follow the law in this interview.

Update: I had Braley’s first name incorrect in my initial post; I’ve corrected it now.  My apologies to Rep. Braley.


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Pelosi said the same thing when Jon Stewart asked her why the dems haven’t done a budget.

Wigglesworth on March 5, 2013 at 11:27 AM

Of course the person asking the question didn’t know enough about it either to put him on the spot. So the average ignorant TV viewer hears this and agrees, not knowing Braley is 100% wrong, and an idiot liar.

portlandon on March 5, 2013 at 11:27 AM

Lying doosh

UltimateBob on March 5, 2013 at 11:27 AM

what.. a… tool…

Khun Joe on March 5, 2013 at 11:28 AM

With the retirement of Harkin, Braley knows he has some mighty big Depends to fill. Clearly, he has the stuff.

M240H on March 5, 2013 at 11:29 AM

Same sh!t, different speaker.

totherightofthem on March 5, 2013 at 11:30 AM

This is senate leadership material.

If he loses he should be a great journalist.

acyl72 on March 5, 2013 at 11:30 AM

Liar.

Fibber.

Prevaricator

“Truth challenged.”

Any more related adjectives ?

listens2glenn on March 5, 2013 at 11:31 AM

Of course the person asking the question didn’t know enough about it either to put him on the spot. So the average ignorant TV viewer hears this and agrees, not knowing Braley is 100% wrong, and an idiot liar.

portlandon on March 5, 2013 at 11:27 AM

Yep. Doesn’t matter if he spouts nonsense if the reporter doesn’t know any better, either.

changer1701 on March 5, 2013 at 11:31 AM

Apparently, Bill Braley doesn’t know much about the job he’s seeking in attempting to fill the seat Tom Harkin’s retirement leaves open in the 2014 election.

Not really a job requirement for Dems. He just has to be able to follow the orders handed to him by Harry Reid.

Bitter Clinger on March 5, 2013 at 11:33 AM

Go to any website/blog with a majority of libtards commenting there…they’ll ALL spew the same response. Idiots one and all.

HumpBot Salvation on March 5, 2013 at 11:34 AM

Of course the person asking the question didn’t know enough about it either to put him on the spot. So the average ignorant TV viewer hears this and agrees, not knowing Braley is 100% wrong, and an idiot liar.

portlandon on March 5, 2013 at 11:27 AM

Unfortunately, it looks like a substantial number of today’s voters are either idiots, too, or just don’t care. There’s a chance that this guy (Braley) is really a True Believer enough to think that there is a gang of malignant Republicans conducting a non-stop filibuster in the Senate.

Scriptor on March 5, 2013 at 11:37 AM

One word,” Braley replied. “The filibuster.”

Uh…. That’s two words.

unclesmrgol on March 5, 2013 at 11:37 AM

Pelosi said the same thing when Jon Stewart asked her why the dems haven’t done a budget.

Wigglesworth on March 5, 2013 at 11:27 AM

Gene Sperling also said the same thing to David Gregory on MTP just last Sunday.

Bald. Face. Lie.

Of course, the ignorant media doesn’t challenge the ignorant politician because they’re both democrats, and since that means they have good intentions, it’s just a little white lie between friends.

Deafdog on March 5, 2013 at 11:37 AM

These jokers love tossing out two-bit words to try sounding smart or informed, yet they know nothing about Federal law, the Constitution, or Congressional procedures. I’m sure the reporters do, but when it comes to Dems they play softball.

Maybe this clown should read news now and again, like the fact the Senate under Reid hasn’t passed a budget like it’s required to for more than 1400 days. And that Obama sent three budgets, none of which got a single vote in favor of passage.

I’m a regular guy and I know this stuff. You’d think a person who aspires to national office would at least be up on current events. Unless, of course, he’s lying. With a Dem, it seems a toss-up most days.

Liam on March 5, 2013 at 11:37 AM

I’d be optimistic about Rep. Steve King’s chances after seeing Bill Braley make a fool of himself, but the Iowa GOP seems to have only one skill: torpedoing conservative candidates.

pookysgirl on March 5, 2013 at 11:37 AM

“Braley then goes on to lecture at length about the need for filibuster reform, but he’s ignorant of one important fact: filibusters don’t apply to budgetary bills.”

Can a sitting Representative in the House really be that ignorant? He works just across the hall from Senators and must work with them once in a while. Has no one ever mentioned this to him? Has he never overheard a conversation that might have included this fact?

Has this this aspect of the concept of filibuster never ever come up in any of the venues in which he works every day?

I’m thinking ignorance is not Braley’s problem.

Dusty on March 5, 2013 at 11:38 AM

Slightly O/T:

But why do Dems need a budget when……..

(CNSNews.com) – During the month of February–as President Barack Obama was warning Americans they would see dramatic effects in their lives if “sequestration” of some planned federal spending kicked in–the federal government’s debt climbed by $253.5 billion.

That one-month increase in the debt was nearly six times as much as the $44 billion in spending cuts the Congressional Budget Office estimates will take place in all of fiscal 2013 as a result of sequestration.

Bottomline: In February alone, the government borrowed nearly 6 times as much as it intends to save with the sequester over the rest of the fiscal year.

Budget? We don’t need no stinkin’ budget!

Rovin on March 5, 2013 at 11:41 AM

Makes for a nice GOP ad for his opponent…nothing but echo chambers, the entire DEM party and their sheeple…

hillsoftx on March 5, 2013 at 11:43 AM

One word,” Braley replied. “The filibuster.”

Uh…. That’s two words.

No, to one raised, eduindoctrinated in public skools, and his self esteem stroked by parents and indoctrinators, if he feels good about defining it as “one” word, then it’s perfectly fine.

hawkeye54 on March 5, 2013 at 11:43 AM

Budget? We don’t need no stinkin’ budget!

If we have a stinkin’ budget, then we have real and defined constraints on what we can spend. Can’t have that.

hawkeye54 on March 5, 2013 at 11:43 AM

Braley blamed Senate Republicans for holding up business by switching from zone defense to man-to-man. “[It's] incredibly frustrating to everyone in the House, Democrat and Republican,” he said.

I’m pretty sure I could convince him of the truth of this.

Dexter_Alarius on March 5, 2013 at 11:44 AM

Just parroting Lew’s response to this question. They believe if they say it enough times, it will become true.

And after a while it will be. There are plenty of people that believe them. Just go to any liberal blog that talks about this particular subject and you will see ample evidence of people believing the Senate needs 60 votes to pass a budget resolution.

ButterflyDragon on March 5, 2013 at 11:45 AM

This should be an easy win for the Republicans.
The ads just write themselves-
“Would you hire a man to do a job he knows nothing about?”
“Meet the politician who doesn’t let facts get in the way.”
“What do Bradley and Piers Morgan have in common? They don’t know the US Constitution.”
On and On

LincolntheHun on March 5, 2013 at 11:46 AM

This is clearly a brilliant play by the Democrats.

You can’t underestimate the stupidity and laziness of the American electorate. Dems know this and have figured out that all they have to do is keep saying it and the drooling morons will blame the opposition and hand them the win.

Plus, if they do somehow get called on it they will point to this blog and say “See the hyper-partisan right wing conspiracy is all abuzz”. The fact that Hot Air covers something is enough for a great many to reflexively disbelieve the facts.

Sinner on March 5, 2013 at 11:47 AM

Makes for a nice GOP ad for his opponent…nothing but echo chambers, the entire DEM party and their sheeple…

Trouble is, there are too many voting sheeple who believe what he, and other dems, say if not challenged by the media, and the comments become facts.

Oh, and Republicans lie all the time. I know, because I read that on the internet and if its on the internet it has to be true.

hawkeye54 on March 5, 2013 at 11:47 AM

I’d be optimistic about Rep. Steve King’s chances after seeing Bill Braley make a fool of himself, but the Iowa GOP seems to have only one skill: torpedoing conservative candidates.

pookysgirl on March 5, 2013 at 11:37 AM

Steve King’s a good guy but he’d get very little votes in Eastern Iowa. And you can’t win Iowa just by banking on the 4th District.

Hostile Gospel on March 5, 2013 at 11:54 AM

Spent last week with my ultra liberal sister that lives in Virginia (Springfield/DC). She came to Texas for the occasion of our mom’s 90th. She believes everything Rachel Maddow tells her and is an intentionally low information voter. When the moment was right I sprung political and she went into her shell, hands on ears, lalalala…the whole bit. Mom got to see it. Let’s just say bringing up federally funded abortions caused her heartburn at the table.

Always challenge liberals. Make them own their precedent.

DanMan on March 5, 2013 at 12:03 PM

He’ll be a perfect little stooge for the similarly ignorant and/or prevaricating Democrats.

Midas on March 5, 2013 at 12:04 PM

We’re all making fun of this guy now, but in a couple of years we’ll probably be calling him Senator Braley.

Curtiss on March 5, 2013 at 12:05 PM

Sarah Palin is SO stupid!

CycloneCDB on March 5, 2013 at 12:11 PM

It doesn’t matter what they say. They could say “We haven’t passed a budget because Republicans killed Tinker Bell.” All the media or low info voters would hear is “We haven’t passed a budget because Republicans.”

jdp629 on March 5, 2013 at 12:13 PM

Yep. Doesn’t matter if he spouts nonsense if the reporter doesn’t know any better, either.

changer1701 on March 5, 2013 at 11:31 AM

Yeah, but I’m awarding at least partial credit for having a) known that there’s not been a budget in 4 years, and b) even asking the question in the first place.

Suprised the hell outta me, frankly.

Midas on March 5, 2013 at 12:16 PM

Everyone here knows that Braley is Mr. Cash for Clunkers, right?

beatcanvas on March 5, 2013 at 12:17 PM

This should be an easy win for the Republicans.
The ads just write themselves-
“Would you hire a man to do a job he knows nothing about?”
“Meet the politician who doesn’t let facts get in the way.”
“What do Bradley and Piers Morgan have in common? They don’t know the US Constitution.”

LincolntheHun on March 5, 2013 at 11:46 AM

The filibuster and its inapplicability to budget resolutions are part of the Senate Rules, not the Constitution.

J.S.K. on March 5, 2013 at 12:29 PM

It’s a Dem talking point.
Therefore, whether it is right or wrong does not matter.
They think we are stupid. But it is really only their base.

Jabberwock on March 5, 2013 at 12:29 PM

Ask Braley if he thinks there is any danger of Guam tipping over.

dissent555 on March 5, 2013 at 12:34 PM

And kudos to the reporter who actually challenged Braley on the Senate’s failure to follow the law in this interview.

Sorry, Ed, but the reporter should have called Braley out on the fact that 50+1 is needed to pass a budget and that a “filibuster” can’t stop such a measure. That would deserve kudos. A softball question about who deserves blame does not deserve such credit as Braley can claim that he would be the adult in the room who would bring both sides together.

blammm on March 5, 2013 at 12:38 PM

Actually, to correct myself above, the fact that you can’t filibuster a budget resolution may be statutory, as opposed to being part of the Senate rules — I can’t find exactly where it comes from.

J.S.K. on March 5, 2013 at 12:40 PM

And who has been filibustering?

Why, the dems and their Harry Reid.

TexAz on March 5, 2013 at 12:44 PM

He seems like a normal guy and the Dems will ensure Mr. Vander Plaats is the “Conservative Choice” and his campaign slogan will be “Jesus is our Savior Jesus is our Savior” and his #1 concern will be gay marriage and this Dem will glide right in.

Worked in Missouri.

Marcus on March 5, 2013 at 12:46 PM

Progressives never let facts stand in the way of Teh Narrative.

Another Drew on March 5, 2013 at 12:50 PM

J.S.K. on March 5, 2013 at 12:29 PM

.
You are absolutely correct.
But I never said the filibuster was a part of the Constitution, just that neither Bradley nor Morgan have knowledge of the document.
A bit of guilt by association, and allowing incorrect inference.

LincolntheHun on March 5, 2013 at 12:51 PM

J.S.K. on March 5, 2013 at 12:40 PM

I would suggest you look at the Budget Act of 1974.

Another Drew on March 5, 2013 at 12:51 PM

I guess the real question is, where is his Republican opponent? His opponent should be pointing out, first how wrong he is, and secondly how this is a scam on the American people and the process.

I’m still waiting on people to put this all together.

bflat879 on March 5, 2013 at 12:59 PM

Is it possible that these Democrats are in fact as stupid as they appear?

rplat on March 5, 2013 at 1:00 PM

I’m a regular guy and I know this stuff. You’d think a person who aspires to national office would at least be up on current events. Unless, of course, he’s lying. With a Dem, it seems a toss-up most days.

Liam on March 5, 2013 at 11:37 AM

You’d think that somebody who holds a national office wouldn’t be seriously concerned about Guam tipping over if too many Marines were stationed there.

You’d think that an Ivy-League educated President would know that a Navy medic isn’t called a corpse-man, Hawaii is not in Asia, Argentina is not aspiring to take over the Maldives, or what year it is when he signs the guest book at Westminster Abbey.

You’d think that a Congressman wouldn’t be sending pictures of his private parts over facebook, go whoring with donors in the Dominican Republic, or ignore the fact their boyfriend is operating a brothel out of their home.

Bottom line, if the idiots in DC are supposedly the best and brightest, I think it is time we elect more “regular guys.”

Happy Nomad on March 5, 2013 at 1:05 PM

Is it possible that these Democrats are in fact as stupid as they appear?

rplat on March 5, 2013 at 1:00 PM

Nobody can be as stupid as Maxine Waters appears without being consigned to a state institution.

Happy Nomad on March 5, 2013 at 1:07 PM

Nobody can be as stupid as Maxine Waters appears without being consigned to a state institution.

If you are a dem, minority and woman as well, your astounding stupidity may be just the ticket to high political office and/or a lifetime job managing a federal bureaucracy. Maxine Waters and her ilk are highly coveted and protected by her political party.

hawkeye54 on March 5, 2013 at 1:11 PM

if the idiots in DC are supposedly the best and brightest,

I don’t know if anyone ever claimed that. Typically the best and brightest don’t often succeed in political office. They usually are behind the scenes manipulating the idiots in DC.

hawkeye54 on March 5, 2013 at 1:13 PM

Dem Senate candidate in IA blames filibusters for budget failure

…MAD COW disease!

KOOLAID2 on March 5, 2013 at 1:27 PM

…MAD COW disease!

KOOLAID2 on March 5, 2013 at 1:27 PM

Oh, I don’t know about that. If Dems in Iowa aren’t blaming the GOP they usually go with the standby that we aren’t spending enough on ethanol subsidies to corn farmers.

Happy Nomad on March 5, 2013 at 1:30 PM

Wait, Harkin has been in the Senate 30 years? That is a problem.

birdwatcher on March 5, 2013 at 1:58 PM

if the GOP candidate can’t beat this guy, then Iowans deserve to be represented by ignorance

burserker on March 5, 2013 at 2:09 PM

Step 1: Send this video to every Voter you know in Iowa with an explanation of why Rep. Braley’s answer is so wrong.

Step 2: Every time we find a Democrat being stupid, we should use the opportunity to let voters know who the Republican candidate is who is running against the Democrat.

In Iowa, it looks like Republican Rep. Steve King is the most likely candidate to run against Rep. Braley for the Senate seat that is being vacated by Senator Harkin.

The decision by Latham, who was elected to his 10th term in November, means conservative Rep. Steve King would have a clear shot at the Republican nomination if he decides to jump into the 2014 race.

The Iowa Senate race will be one of the closely watched contests next year, with both parties vying aggressively for the open seat. Democrats have 21 seats to defend, while Republicans will try to protect 14 seats.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/onpolitics/2013/02/27/latham-senate-iowa-harkin/1951941/

This is a Senate seat that Republicans should win in 2014. The campaign needs to start NOW.

wren on March 5, 2013 at 2:38 PM

Ann Coulter once compared liberals to cats: “They have a pre-programmed set of strictly limited behaviors. They all have the same twitches, the same tropes, the same paranoias.” One can say that cats aren’t terribly smart, but I’d argue that they’re as smart as they need to be: they know how to get what they want from their humans, which is all they really need to know.

A liberal like Braley is also as smart as he needs to be. He knows how to blame Republicans. He knows not to talk to reporters from FOX News. He knows how to vote in lock-step with whatever his party leaders say. He knows that liberal voters are even more ignorant than he is.

Really, what more does he need to know?

Spurius Ligustinus on March 5, 2013 at 2:47 PM

I guess it’s true, “In my country not only do you elect idiots, the idiots elect you”, we are converging on idiocracy

jake49 on March 5, 2013 at 2:48 PM

These jokers love tossing out two-bit words to try sounding smart or informed, yet they know nothing about Federal law, the Constitution, or Congressional procedures. I’m sure the reporters do, but when it comes to Dems they play softball.

Liam on March 5, 2013 at 11:37 AM

Are you sure? I have my doubts.

But there’s no doubt that they think they know.

tom on March 5, 2013 at 3:03 PM

Yeah, It would seem that Bruce Braley is stupid…. he is not stupid, he is intentionally telling an untruth and he knows that low information voters will believe him.

Braley is my Rep. A pure class warrior, he is a founding member of the Populist Caucus in the House. Basically he is John Edwards without the pretty hair.

He will probably win Harkin’s seat.

sonof1073rd on March 5, 2013 at 3:20 PM

Braley then goes on to lecture at length about the need for filibuster reform, but he’s ignorant of one important fact: filibusters don’t apply to budgetary bills. Budgets don’t need anything more than a simple majority to pass.

You know what disturbs me, is that today’s journalists are so stupid, and obviously don’t do their homework, that they always let incorrect information fly by as if it were reasonable.

OK.

Harry Reid has not brought up a budget for a vote in a dog’s age. Nor does he feel like working on a bill. Nor does he want to do anything he feels is insignificant…he is almost as lazy as Obama.

Fleuries on March 5, 2013 at 3:32 PM

Help me — how is this onion head any less ridiculous than Todd Akin?

He doesn’t understand why his own party and the Senator he wants to praise and replace haven’t passed a budget in four years, despite a billion words having been published during that time telling him exactly why.

Jaibones on March 5, 2013 at 4:50 PM

Braley is widely regarded by those in his district as a dummy. So this does not come as a surprise to us.

He represents the triumph of labor union influence and money in a small state, which is why he will be the hand picked choice of Dems to replace Harkin.

The Iowa GOP has not found anyone with any chops to run yet, so the collective IQ of the Senate is likely to decline in November 2014. Which is saying a lot.

Caustic Conservative on March 6, 2013 at 7:26 AM

Apparently, Bruce Braley doesn’t know much about the job he’s seeking in attempting to fill the seat Tom Harkin’s retirement leaves open in the 2014 election.

Elect him, he is qualified. He is too stupid to earn a living doing anything else except working in the elective bodies of the U.S. Government.

georgeofthedesert on March 6, 2013 at 10:55 AM