Something historic happened Thursday. For the first time since 1877 a member of the House and a member of the Senate stood up together to object to a state's electoral college votes.
This is the first step on a necessary road toward making sure that everyone is allowed to vote and that every vote is counted (something we did not see in 2000 or 2004). The next time around all of us must be confident that when the election results come in, they reflect the will of the people, not the whim of mechanical error and human obstruction.
Unlike the 2000 election, when the black members of Congress were told to sit down and shut up, this time a senator had the courage to stand with them to force Congress to go back to their separate chambers to discuss and debate the issues surrounding the vote count. California Senator Barbara Boxer rose to the occasion and stood with Ohio Representative Stephanie Tubbs Jones and 30 other Representatives "to cast the light of truth on a flawed system which must be fixed now."
Representative Maxine Waters took to the floor and said, "Mr. Speaker and members, I dedicate my objection to Ohio's electoral votes to Mr. Michael Moore, the producer of the documentary 'Fahrenheit 9/11' and I thank him for educating the world on the threats to our democracy and the proceedings of this house on the acceptance of the electoral college votes for the 2000 presidential election."
Actually, it is Maxine Waters who deserves thanks for defending our most basic right.
Coming out of the gates like this in the very first week of session sent a strong message that we are not going to be pushed around. If the Republicans think the next four years are going to be a cakewalk, they’ve got another thing coming.
Of course the Republicans went ballistic. They blamed me, you, Hollywood and anything else that came to mind. To read some of their more humorous comments, click here.
Congratulations to the tens of thousands of you who called, faxed, and e-mailed Barbara Boxer and other senators. You have shown the world, with the strength of your convictions, that the movement toward a truly representative democracy will not be stopped. Thursday’s actions will be marked by history books as a turning point for the electoral process and for a Democratic Party that has for too long sat back and taken it on the chin.
Your voices have echoed all the way up to the hallowed halls of Congress and for that, you deserve the thanks more than anyone.
P.S. If you want to see portions of what took place, check out the video clips and transcripts on the website.
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