Sadly, I think the Dems are about to make a huge mistake, either killing the amendment to please defense contractors, or proving that the Democrats have their fair share of misogyny by letting the Stupak Amendment be in the final language of the Senate bill.
The charge stems from a Franken-sponsored amendment that would prohibit the Department of Defense from contracting with companies that require employees to resolve workplace complaints — including complaints of sexual assault — through private arbitration rather than the courts.
Thirty Senate Republicans voted against the amendment, and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, liberal commentators and state Democratic Party chairs have been merciless.
Angry letters denouncing Republican senators have appeared in newspapers from Tennessee to Idaho. Unflattering videos of senators trying to explain their votes have gone viral on the Internet, including one of Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) swatting away a hand-held video camera held by a liberal blogger questioning his vote against the amendment.
And Democratic strategists are salivating at the prospects of using the vote against the eight GOP senators who voted against the amendment and are up for reelection in 2010.
Depressing the vote of women so they don't turn out for either side in 2010 will seriously damage the Dems in 2010. There's still time to correct the situation, but a lot depends on the next few months.