I don't know what you guys have in the water up there in Washington State... but it appears it works wonders for you. Perhaps it is the great abundance of that water that also helps. I am not sure.
But one thing I AM sure of... is how wonderfully CIVIL your Washington State Senate conducts the "People's Business."
Ok... so I don't have much of a life, here. As many of you know, I pretty much live in a cave. Don't come out much. But at least I have internet access. Whew !
But... for an hour and a half tonight... I watched the Final Debate and Roll Call of the Washington State Senate on the issue of Marriage Equality.
Above is a picture of the State Senate doing their Roll Call vote on the Issue. There are forty-nine State Senators... and before their final vote... each of them was given three minutes to comment as they saw fit concerning the State Senate Bill Number 6239... the Marriage Equality Bill.
What happened during that parade of "three minute comments" was something that has been severely lacking in the United States Senate, and also in the United States House of Representatives. Civility ! Professionalism ! Respect ! And not only respect for each other... but respect for the views of each of those "others."
Honestly and truly... I was very impressed.
Each State Senator spoke their views. Occasionally each mentioned that other Senators in their Senate were their very good friends... but recognized that those same "very good friends" had very different viewpoints on the issue of Marriage Equality.
Civility. No rocks being thrown. No threats. No invoking the promise of thunderbolts from Zeus, or excommunication by the Pope. Just genuine, civil, well-mannered disagreement... when that was the case.
Finally... after all Senators had the opportunity to make their comments, thank their allies in the Senate, and compliment those who disagreed with their viewpoints... for doing so with great decorum... a final vote was taken.
The bill... Senate Bill 6239... was approved by a margin of 28 Yays to 21 Nays. It was then approved by voice vote with none dissenting... to be sent straight to the other branch of the Washington State government... the House... for an immediate vote. And all in the Senate knew that it would be immediately approved by the House.
The Governor of Washington State... Governor Gregoire... has said that she would sign it immediately.
My faithful partner Ms Mollie T Cat wanted all of you to know that she was equally interested in the drama that enfolded before us in the Washington State Senate. She is shown here... concentrating on the wonders of the Democratic Process as it happened this evening in Washington.
What are my views on the subject of Marriage Equality ? Although what I believe is not the subject of this post... I do believe that same sex couples should have the opportunity to be as miserable in their marriage... and equally so... as heterosexual couples do in their marriage. And... if they end up happy... so much the better.
But again... that is not the point of this.
My point is... what in the world is wrong with all of those crazy people we see in the Congress in Washington, DC... mainly in the House of Representatives, but also in the Senate... who continue to be AT WAR ?
Obstructionists seem to rule. Nothing even gets brought up for a vote. The entire Congress is either set in quicksand or cement. Nothing... moves. We appear to be faced with another nine months of obstructionism... without the possibility of any sort of bipartisan compromise, or even civil communication.
Why can't the Congress of the United States... the Senate and the House of Representatives... be as professional as those lawmakers in the Washington State Senate ?
Thank You Washington State Senate. You should be held up as a model for all.
Update: Today is Wednesday, February 8, 2012.
The Washington State House has also just voted on the Marriage Equality bill, and has also approved it, this time by a vote of 55-43.
The bill now goes to the desk of Governor Christine Gregoire, who has promised to sign it.