Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Blah Blah Blah, Says Joe Manchin

Dear Sen. Joe:

Having trouble meeting up with family?  Well, I am sadly going to have to call bull-hockey on your excuses.

There's this newfangled thing I like to call a train.  It's run by some nice folks at Amtrak (you should familiarize yourself with them, since as a Senator now you'll have to vote -- or not show up for a vote, as the case may be -- on their budget at some point.
They have a train (or two, depending on the day) from Pittsburgh, PA to Washington, D.C.  And, conveniently, there is a nice parking garage/bus station just across the street from the station where you or your family could park a car for a lengthy period of time during whatever family visit you want to make.

Do ask Vice President Biden about this nifty train service.  He used it for years after his first wife passed away to go back and forth to DC from his home in Delaware so that he could do his job and actually cast votes, do real and in-depth work on policy issues and take his job seriously in the Senate.

Or, in the alternative, you can do things like drive or have your family drive to you.  Or take a plane.  You know -- plan for your travel so that you aren't missing your tax-payer-funded job which requires you to vote.  Yes, even on the issues that are hard, or people notice.

Working for a living.  It's awesome, isn't it?

Here's the thing, Sen. Joe:  when a vote or other work-related matter is actually important to you?  You make time for it.  What does it say when you don't show up?  Nothing good about you, I'm sorry to say.

Step your game up to the next level or more, Sen. Joe -- you are in the big time now, and you and your staff let us all down in the Mountain State with this snafu.  It isn't amateur hour any longer, so at least try to raise both your speech-making and your policy-wonkery to the next level.  Or get better staffers who know how to help you juggle train schedules and travel time along with the intricacies of your actual job.

It's not that tough, truly, but you do have to want to, you know, work at it a little bit.  Which we expect you to do, since you work for all of us.  (And, moreover, we expect you to do the job well, because if you continue to flub like this, we'll get stuck with John Raese or his ilk and, frankly, I will never forgive you for it if that happens on your watch.)

Thanks and merry Christmas from your cheery constituent who also knows how to read the Congressional Record, and sees that you put your non-appearance vote explanations about both missed votes into the record after the fact,


(YouTube -- Joe Cocker, from his Mad Dogs & Englishmenalbum, singing "Cry Me A River."  Excuse the WV politics break, but Sen. Manchin's whining about his personal, family reasons for being a slacker just ticked me off.  You think other working people don't have to juggle actually doing their jobs and their families, too, during the holidays every single year of their lives?)

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