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DeepModem Mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu May-19-05 11:38 PM
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WP: The Chamber Meets the Force (Lautenberg displays Palpatine poster)
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The Chamber Meets the Force
By Dana Milbank
Friday, May 20, 2005; Page A05

Senators love to talk about their chamber as the "world's greatest deliberative body."

Yesterday morning, Senate Minority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) used the phrase. Yesterday afternoon, Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.) used it. But it took Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) to show why the Senate is the world's greatest deliberative body.

The octogenarian legislator, rising in defense of the filibuster, displayed a larger-than-life poster of Ian McDiarmid playing the evil Supreme Chancellor Palpatine in the just-released film "Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith."

"In a far-off universe, in this film, the leader of the Senate breaks the rules to give himself and his supporters more power," Lautenberg inveighed. "I sincerely hope that it doesn't mirror actions being contemplated in the Senate of the United States."

Lautenberg juxtaposed the evil chancellor with another poster, of Jimmy Stewart playing Sen. Jefferson Smith in Frank Capra's "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington." That film, Lautenberg said, "is a celebration of this Senate, the world's greatest deliberative body. But if the majority leader is successful in ending the filibuster . . . we will move from the world's greatest deliberative body to a rubber-stamp factory."...
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