Thursday, April 06, 2006

Make Way for a Real Maverick

Move over Senator McCain, there is a real maverick in town. And in today’s political climate filled with robotic, programmed yes-men, scared to do anything that might negatively affect their poll numbers, this is really good news. His name is Senator Russ Feingold and he is the real deal. He is a man who follows his conscience regardless of where it might take him. His decisions are based on what he feels is best for the country and not what’s best for his political career. (Can you feel the fresh air?) He uses the constitution as his bible and not the other way around. He does not pander to the Dobson, Falwell, Robertson crowd. He makes decisions that other Republicans and Democrats consider political suicide because he cares more about this country than his popularity. He is an American first and a politician second. He is so true to himself that often times he finds himself standing alone, even fellow Democrats who might be in agreement desert him. He is a true hero. He is a man of integrity. He is a man whose priorities are in the right place. He is a real maverick.

He saw through the Bush Administration’s smoke and mirrors campaign for war with Iraq and voted against it. He was the only one willing to vote against the Patriot Act even though others shared the same fears he had that it went too far, sacrificing precious rights and freedoms for vague assertions of making the country safer. And when President Bush authorized a no-warrant domestic surveillance program, Senator Feingold dared to accuse Bush of breaking the law and misleading Congress about it and proceeded to seek censure of the President, again with no support from Republicans, and most Democrats cowering in the shadows. But what sealed my admiration for this man is when he came out this week and said

he not only opposes a constitutional amendment in Wisconsin to ban gay marriage and civil unions, but in fact, favors full marriage rights for gay and lesbian couples.

Calling such a ban a "mean-spirited attempt to divide Wisconsin," Feingold urged constituents at a Paddock Lake "listening session" not to support it.

He went on to argue not just for civil unions, but gay marriage.

"Gay and lesbian couples should be able to marry and have access to the same rights, privileges and benefits that straight couples currently enjoy." Feingold went on to add, "[This] kind of discrimination ... has no place in our laws, especially in a progressive state like Wisconsin. The time has come to end this discrimination and the politics of divisiveness that has become part of this issue."

The Senator went on to argue that religious groups do not have to recognize any civil marriage.

Thank you Senator Feingold for giving me some hope that there are still people out there that care more about this country than their own political aspirations.

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