The slings and arrows came from both sides of the political spectrum. First up: Doug, a Democrat from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida who said, “Please, please get them to veto it! That would be just such a gift for us. You guys don’t know what you’re stepping into if you veto this or the Senate filibusters this.”
I refuted this point, and the points about this being “perceived as a scandal,” by rolling clips of Congressman Billy Tauzin. Tauzin is in the lead on investigating Enron, yet he has said again and again that there’s nothing linking Bush to wrongdoing.
Enron has nothing to do with Bush, and it has nothing to do with campaign finance reform. The proponents of this bill are just using the supposed outrage over Enron to cow spineless politicians into voting for this in Enron’s name. As for a veto, look: if Bush vetoes this he’s going to do so with a speech explaining the unconstitutionality. He’ll explain that it shreds the First Amendment right to your free speech.
Another call came from Jeff in San Francisco, a self-described EIB fan who feared Bush would listen to me and thus be tarred as caving to the “right wing.” This makes no sense. First of all, this is no “game,” as Jeff called it. This is serious business – and I would be honored to push the debate to a point where I help save the First Amendment. Second, the president has always been happy for my support, but I’m not bound to him. I’m independent, and when I think he’s wrong – as I do on this and did on the stimulus package – I say so.
This is a heated issue, and it’s getting hotter every minute. That’s one reason Senator Mitch McConnell is trying to slow down the debate on this. McConnell knows that most of his colleagues haven’t even read the bill! He’s one of the few Republicans with the testicular fortitude to stand up for free speech, to say, “Wait a minute! You’re being told this bill will prevent another Enron, but even the bill’s proponents say it wouldn’t have done that!”
This was a great day for calls, and I’ve commanded that specific calls go up on the web. I want those of you who disagree with me on this, or don’t understand it, to please listen to all of this audio. It’s your free speech that’s at stake here, after all. You simply do not have anything more important to do than this.