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Old 12-04-2012, 07:51 AM  
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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Why are Republicans voting down a UN disabilities treaty?

http://thehill.com/blogs/global-affa...ail-in-senate-

UN disabilities treaty expected to fail in Senate amid GOP opposition
By Julian Pecquet
12/04/12 05:00 AM ET

Senate Republicans are expected on Tuesday to reject an international treaty affirming the rights of people with disabilities.

Democrats made a last-ditch effort to secure the two-thirds vote for ratification of the United Nations convention, but appeared to be well short of that mark ahead of Tuesday’s scheduled vote.

Conservative activists have come out in force against the treaty, warning it would pave the way for government interference in homeschooling. Supporters of the pact say it would merely extend the rights under the Americans With Disabilities Act to all nations.

“This is about Americans and raising the standard of how we treat Americans around the world,” said Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman John Kerry (D-Mass.).

Democrats would need only 66 senators to ratify the treaty, due to the absence of Sen. Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), but Republican votes have been hard to come by.

Thirty-six Republican senators signed a letter to Senate leaders in September promising to oppose any treaty brought to a vote during the lame-duck session of Congress.

Democrats had hoped some of those senators would have a change of heart after the election, and were able to peel off two GOP votes last week when Sens. Orrin Hatch (Utah) and Scott Brown (Mass.) voted to proceed to the disabilities treaty on the Senate floor.

The 61-36 vote to proceed would not have been enough for ratification, however, and three Republicans who abstained from the September letter — Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) and Sens. James Inhofe (Okla.) and Jerry Moran (Kan.) — voted no, further dimming Democratic hopes.

Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah), who spearheaded the September letter, is working alongside former presidential candidate Rick Santorum, the Heritage Foundation and the Home School Legal Defense Association to ensure the treaty’s defeat. They warn it would create a U.N. committee that could impinge on U.S. sovereignty.

“Our concerns with this convention have nothing to do with any lack of concern for the rights of persons with disabilities,” Lee said last week. “They have everything to do with protecting U.S. sovereignty, protecting the interests of parents in the United States and the interests of families.”

Opponents of the treaty have also criticized it for not excluding abortion rights.

Democrats say the treaty stays neutral on abortion by calling on governments to offer people with disabilities the full range of family-planning services provided under domestic law.

Conservative groups pressed for the addition of language that would specify that the treaty does not create any new abortion rights, arguing that abortion is often a form of discrimination against people with disabilities.

All nine Republicans on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted for language excluding abortion rights when the treaty came before the panel in July. The amendment failed, and only three Republicans — Sens. Dick Lugar (Ind.), John Barrasso (Wyo.) and Johnny Isakson (Ga.) — joined the 10 Democrats on the panel voting for passage.

Democrats were trying Monday to convince on-the-fence Republicans that a “no” vote on the Senate floor would be politically painful.

The treaty has the support of a handful of Republican senators — including former presidential candidate John McCain (Ariz.) and Republican Policy Committee Chairman Barrasso — as well as many advocates for people with disabilities and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Former Sen. Bob Dole (R-Kan.) is expected to champion the treaty in a return to the Senate floor Tuesday after denouncing the “scare tactics” used by its opponents in a letter distributed Monday.

Democrats have also roped in former Attorney General and Pennsylvania Gov. Richard Thornburgh, who was President George H. W. Bush’s point man on the Americans With Disabilities Act in 1990.

The treaty, Thornburgh said Monday, would cede “no authority to the U.N. over the U.S. or any of its citizens. None. Zero.” He said the U.N. committee’s recommendations would be purely advisory and could not require the United States to change its laws or pass new ones and would not create any legal rights in state or federal courts.

The treaty was negotiated under President George W. Bush and was signed by President Obama in July 2009. It has been signed by at least 153 countries in addition to the United States.

Lee in his letter said the lame-duck session would not be an “appropriate” time for passage of treaties that will become the “supreme law of the land.”

Kerry countered by saying the Senate has passed treaties 19 times during lame-duck sessions. He said the sitting senators, who “did all the work” sitting in on the committee’s markup of the treaty this summer, should be the ones to vote on it.

President Obama, in a statement marking the International Day of Persons with Disabilities on Monday, said U.S. leadership on a key human-rights issue is at stake.

“Ratifying the convention in the Senate would reaffirm America’s position as the global leader on disability rights,” Obama said, “and better position us to encourage progress toward inclusion, equal opportunity, full participation, independent living and economic self-sufficiency for persons with disabilities worldwide.”
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Old 12-04-2012, 09:54 AM   #16
La literatura La literatura is offline
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Originally Posted by KCWolfman View Post
Yup, like deficits, fiscal cliffs, entitlements, Healthcare issues, etc. - AMERICAN issues.

I have no qualms whether the stupid thing is ratified - you misread. I just don't see why it is a big issue or why we are wasting time with it. As I said, I wish this sort of effort were put forth to things that matter to my family.
This disability treaty was put together over 20 years ago. It's just now being ratified. On the other hand, every day negotiations take place relating to the fiscal cliff as a deal tries to get worked out.

You're making a silly populist argument that doesn't really match up to reality. This isn't really a big deal aside from how it shows the GOP thrives on obstructionism more than legitimate and principled governance.
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:02 AM   #17
KCWolfman KCWolfman is offline
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Originally Posted by Literature View Post
This disability treaty was put together over 20 years ago. It's just now being ratified. On the other hand, every day negotiations take place relating to the fiscal cliff as a deal tries to get worked out.

You're making a silly populist argument that doesn't really match up to reality. This isn't really a big deal aside from how it shows the GOP thrives on obstructionism more than legitimate and principled governance.
As I said, I don't oppose it. I don't know how much clearer I can make it. I just honestly don't care about it, at all.

If it was put together 20 years ago, the wonderful loving partisan Democrats have had ample opportunity to ratify it themselves through multiple congressional sessions, including the one two sessions ago where their leader was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize. After all, they just had to vote yay or nay, it is their job, right?
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:06 AM   #18
Garcia Bronco Garcia Bronco is offline
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International treaties should deal with how international politics are run, not how governments run themselves internally.
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:10 AM   #19
La literatura La literatura is offline
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Originally Posted by KCWolfman View Post
As I said, I don't oppose it. I don't know how much clearer I can make it. I just honestly don't care about it, at all.

If it was put together 20 years ago, the wonderful loving partisan Democrats have had ample opportunity to ratify it themselves through multiple congressional sessions, including the one two sessions ago where their leader was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize. After all, they just had to vote yay or nay, it is their job, right?
Oh brother /Charlie Brown. It would be nice if you knew the process before making judgment. The treaty first gets examined by the Senate Foreign Committee. They make recommendations for approval. The full senate approves it, (but doesn't ratify it), and then it gets sent back to the President to ratify.

So you don't oppose, you don't even care about it, you just want to bitch about signing it? That makes about as much sense as the GOP's opposition to it. Did you happen to vote straight-ticket GOP this year?
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:35 AM   #20
ForeverChiefs58 ForeverChiefs58 is offline
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Who is going to enforce it?

Does this mean other countries that drag people through the streets before stomping them, burning them and cutting their heads off will start to worry about how they treat people with a disabilitiy?
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:39 AM   #21
HonestChieffan HonestChieffan is offline
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If they passed it so long ago, has the impact been positive?
Have they neglected to take actions pending our Senate?
What is the objective of this treaty and what should we expect to see change as a result? Are we already funding the UN efforts to address this global issue?
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:42 AM   #22
La literatura La literatura is offline
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Originally Posted by ForeverChiefs58 View Post
Who is going to enforce it?

Does this mean other countries that drag people through the streets before stomping them, buning them and cutting their heads off will start to worry about how they treat people with a disabilitiy?
The individual countries enforce it. Since it's a UN treaty, ratifying members would accept the jurisdiction of the International Court of Justice if there are disputes or violations.
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:50 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by HonestChieffan View Post
If they passed it so long ago, has the impact been positive?
Have they neglected to take actions pending our Senate?
What is the objective of this treaty and what should we expect to see change as a result? Are we already funding the UN efforts to address this global issue?
It's only been in effect since 2008. You can read about activities, objectives, and expectations here: http://www.un.org/disabilities/defau...avid=8&pid=183.

I doubt they neglect to take action pending our approval, but we don't have much of say in taking action until we approve.

Yes, we're probably funding it, because we pretty much fund the entire UN.
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:55 AM   #24
HonestChieffan HonestChieffan is offline
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good news then. I was afraid disabilities were being promoted by someone until we declared a position
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Old 12-04-2012, 11:03 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Literature View Post
This disability treaty was put together over 20 years ago. It's just now being ratified. On the other hand, every day negotiations take place relating to the fiscal cliff as a deal tries to get worked out.

You're making a silly populist argument that doesn't really match up to reality. This isn't really a big deal aside from how it shows the GOP thrives on obstructionism more than legitimate and principled governance.
How would the world be different today if we had ratified this 20 years ago? What benefit would the US have derived?
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Old 12-04-2012, 11:04 AM   #26
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How would the world be different today if we had ratified this 20 years ago? What benefit would the US have derived?
I don't know.
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Old 12-04-2012, 11:11 AM   #27
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I don't know.
We've apparently missed an enormous opportunity.
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Old 12-04-2012, 11:20 AM   #28
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I think the interests of the Republican party would be better served if they would pick their battles, rather than opposing things without being able to articulate real and credible reasons for opposing them.

I don't see the harm in ratifying a treaty that was initiated by George H. W. Bush and signed by George Bush. Refusing to do so makes it look like the Republicans are indeed being obstructionist and petulant. It sends the message that they are refusing to support anything that the Obama administration supports. This could very well backfire two years from now in the mid-term elections.

I voted for Romney, and I was despondent when he lost. But it's time to get on with the business of running the country. Pick your battles. Oppose the things that are truly objectionable, and support the things that are benign.
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Old 12-04-2012, 11:40 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brainiac View Post
I think the interests of the Republican party would be better served if they would pick their battles, rather than opposing things without being able to articulate real and credible reasons for opposing them.

I don't see the harm in ratifying a treaty that was initiated by George H. W. Bush and signed by George Bush. Refusing to do so makes it look like the Republicans are indeed being obstructionist and petulant. It sends the message that they are refusing to support anything that the Obama administration supports. This could very well backfire two years from now in the mid-term elections.

I voted for Romney, and I was despondent when he lost. But it's time to get on with the business of running the country. Pick your battles. Oppose the things that are truly objectionable, and support the things that are benign.



Dammit, I though being against George Bush was what we were supposed to be. If Bush was behind it is got to be a bullshit deal.
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Old 12-04-2012, 11:45 AM   #30
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Lost interest at UN Treaty.
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