Last week, 16 Republicans joined with Democrats to vote for cloture on the biggest gun grabbing bill since 1994. In doing so, they gave cover to Senators Pryor (AR) and Begich (AK), allowing them to vote no, while still granting Harry Reid the votes needed to break the filibuster. The names of the traitors are Sens. Lamar Alexander of Tennessee, Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, Richard M. Burr of North Carolina, Saxby Chambliss of Georgia, Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, Susan Collins of Maine, Bob Corker of Tennessee, Jeff Flake of Arizona, Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, Dean Heller of Nevada, John Hoeven of North Dakota, Johnny Isakson of Georgia, Mark S. Kirk of Illinois, John McCain of Arizona, Patrick J. Toomey of Pennsylvania and Roger Wicker of Mississippi.
They will contend that they are merely allowing debate to proceed and will not vote for a bad bill in the end. The problem is that once cloture is invoked, Reid will cut a deal to move some sort of compromise, such as the Toomey-Manchin expanded background check deal, which will undoubtedly garner enough support to win passage.
Although Mitch McConnell personally voted no, he failed to enforce party discipline by whipping up the vote. This is exactly why we must change the leadership and the members of the GOP Senate Conference.