Harry Reid Slams Republicans for Using Fake Rule Named After Child Molester to Block Zika Funding

I wouldn’t call myself a huge “fan” of Sen. Harry Reid, but I don’t think he gets the credit he deserves sometimes. Maybe it’s because he’s been in the Senate for so long, but he hasn’t exactly been shy when it comes to calling out Republicans. In fact, he really does deserve a great deal of credit for being the majority leader of the Senate during a time where Republicans were more obstructive than at any time in our nation’s history.

Well, even though he’s no longer the majority leader, Reid continues to battle Republicans who put partisan politics over the American people.

For instance, the comments he made today where he slammed Republicans for using a “rule” named after admitted child molester, former House Speaker Dennis Hastert, to block a bill that would fund measures to combat a possible Zika outbreak here in the United States.

Reid started out by bringing up the fact that House Republicans could have passed a bill for funding to combat Zika — if it wasn’t for the fake “rule” that says unless the majority of the party that controls the House of Representatives supports a bill, leadership doesn’t have to bring that bill up for a vote. Basically it’s a way to block the minority party from having any power. This “rule” was used a few years ago after the Senate passed bipartisan immigration reform, only to have then-Speaker of the House John Boehner refuse to let the House vote on that bill knowing it would pass.

Essentially, it’s an informal “rule” that more or less negates the actual purpose of the House of Representatives.

“They have what is called the Hastert rule, named after a congressman from Illinois who was the Speaker of the House for a number of years,” Reid said. “They didn’t want Democrats to be involved and they’re still that way. Even though Hastert’s in prison, they still follow the Hastert rule.”

The senator then took aim at Republicans for trying to use the bill meant to fund Zika to attack Planned Parenthood.

“This Zika, young women are concerned about birth control and for the majority of young women, this is the only place they have to go,” Reid added. “But what did they do? They said, ‘We’re going to restrict funding for birth control provided by Planned Parenthood.’”

Of course, being that Zika can impact fetuses, birth control is a pretty big deal — especially for poor women.

Throughout his speech Reid referenced the “crazies” in the Republican party being the reason why the rule named after an admitted child molester was being used to block Zika funding. He took a jab at his conservative counterparts by bringing up the fact that “crazies” wasn’t his term — but rather former House Speaker John Boehner’s.

This was a great speech by Sen. Reid. Not only did he make excellent points about how it’s ridiculous Republicans are trying to use Zika to go after Planned Parenthood, but I love how he brought up the rule named after a child molester that they’re using to block a non-Planned Parenthood related Zika bill.

The truth is, this “rule” should not even be allowed at all. If a bill comes to the House for a vote, it should get voted on. The point of the House of Representatives is to represent the people by letting their elected representatives vote on all bills. However, that can’t happen when the majority party, fearing a bill that party doesn’t want to pass — will pass, blocks legislation by simply not allowing it to be voted on.

And I don’t care what “side” you’re on, Democrat or Republican, I think both “sides” should agree that’s not how the House of Representatives was meant to operate.

Watch Reid’s comments below via Raw Story:

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


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