Joe Manchin Just Innocent Frog Who Gave Scorpions Kavanaugh And Gorsuch A Lift
You know, the one thing one can say about Joe Manchin over Kyrsten Sinema is that at least he's honest about certain things. Sinema plays dress-up, pretends to care about abortion rights, LGBTQ rights, gun control and all kinds of other things — but just not to the extent that she would actually do anything to secure them, on account of how that might upset her good buddies in the GOP. Manchin, at least, is usually honest about not caring very much about those things, and is also relatively honest about how much he loves fucking up the environment, as well as about the fact that he is a super rich guy who lives on a yacht, drives a Maserati, and does not give a flying fuck about poor people — except to the extent that he can pretend their interests are one and the same, because of how they love working in coal mines and he enjoys raking in half a million dollars a year from coal stocks.
But today, he is absolutely full of shit.
“I am deeply disappointed that the Supreme Court has voted to overturn Roe v. Wade. It has been the law of the land for nearly 50 years and was understood to be settled precedent. I trusted Justice Gorsuch and Justice Kavanaugh when they testified under oath that they also believed Roe v. Wade was settled legal precedent and I am alarmed they chose to reject the stability the ruling has provided for two generations of Americans,” Manchin said in a statement today.
The fuck he did.
There are a lot of things I am more than willing to believe that Joe Manchin believes. No one could possibly accuse me of not being generous in that regard. This? No. No, I do not believe he believed that. I also do not believe Susan Collins believed that. Not for one second. And if either of them did believe that, for one second, not only are they too stupid to be in the Senate, they are quite possibly too stupid to live.
"As a Catholic, I was raised pro-life and will always consider myself pro-life," Manchin (who is on record as supporting the death penalty, a thing strictly opposed by the Catholic Church, even for people who are not murderers) continued, "But I have come to accept that my definition of pro-life may not always be someone else’s definition of pro-life. I believe exceptions should be made in instances of rape, incest and when the life of the mother is in jeopardy."
"But let me be clear," he said. "I support legislation that would codify the rights Roe v. Wade previously protected. I am hopeful Democrats and Republicans will come together to put forward a piece of legislation that would do just that."
Let's just say that Manchin really did believe Kavanaugh and Gorsuch when they said they respected Roe as settled precedent — his very own statement here provides a fantastic lesson in "How To Know When People Are Lying To Your Face." Perhaps he should take note.
You see, just last month, Joe Manchin voted against codifying Roe. He was the lone Democratic senator to do so. So that's a lie. He also knows full well that there are only three Republican senators — Susan Collins, Lisa Murkowski, and maybe Shelley Moore Capito — who might possibly vote for such legislation. Though they did not vote for the last bill codifying Roe either.
Which Republicans does Joe Manchin imagine might vote for such legislation? Where is he finding seven other Republicans who would vote for that? Without getting rid of the filibuster, there is literally no chance to codify Roe. So that's a lie. See how easy it is, sometimes, to tell when people are lying to your face?
There was absolutely no reason to believe that Kavanaugh or Gorsuch were not going to overturn Roe. Donald Trump was very clear in saying that his plan was to nominate judges to the bench who would overturn Roe. He said it before he was elected. The Republican Party and the Federalist Society would not have supported any nominees who could not be trusted to do so. There was absolutely no reason to believe them.
We all know the story about the frog and the scorpion. The scorpion wants to get across the river and asks a frog for a ride. The frog says no, but then the scorpion promises not to sting him, pointing out that if he did sting the frog, the frog would drown and he would die as well. Halfway across, the scorpion stings the frog, and as they're both dying — the frog from the sting, the scorpion from drowning — the frog asks the scorpion why he stung him anyway and the scorpion says, "I couldn't help it, it's my nature."
Well, it's in the nature of conservative justices to rule in favor of horrific things, like overturning Roe and every other grotesque decision handed down this week. That's what they do. That's their nature, that's their character. There is no excuse for Joe Manchin, an adult man who has been in politics this long, to not know that and to not have known they were lying when everyone else around him did. He specifically chose to at least pretend to trust these men over those in his own party who told him that they were lying —either because he didn't care or because he wanted the other scorpions to save him a seat at lunch.
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Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse