Skip to comments.New York's Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand builds bridges with GOP, raises profile in Washington
Posted on 08/10/2013 8:21:12 PM PDT by EinNYC
The junior senator has the support of Republican colleagues Rand Paul and Sen. Ted Cruz on a measure to overhaul how the military handles sexual assault allegations. Her work has garnered praise from GOP members as a Democrat theyd like to work with and is helping her own set of issues in Washington.,/i>
WASHINGTON It was a head-turning sight on Capitol Hill. There was Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, a New York Democrat, standing with firebrand Republican Sens. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Rand Paul (R-Ky.) to showcase their support of her measure to overhaul how the military handles sexual assault allegations.
Her relentless campaign for the measure, which landed Gillibrand on The Daily Show on Thursday, has helped to transform perceptions of the junior New York senator. "She's being taken seriously," said Norm Ornstein, a scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. "She's clearly raised her profile and become a leader on this." Since 2009, when then Gov. David Paterson appointed her to the seat vacated when Hillary Clinton became secretary of state, Gillibrand has become known as a prodigious fund-raiser, and she has even generated some presidential buzz.
She played a role in enacting some high-profile legislation, most notably a repeal of the Dont Ask, Dont Tell law that prevented gays from openly serving in the military, and a bill to pay for medical care for first responders sickened by working at Ground Zero after the Sept. 11 attacks. Still, Gillibrand was privately seen by some as a legislative lightweight, with New Yorks senior senator, Democrat Chuck Schumer, coaching her politically and suggesting legislative issues to pursue. With her fight to combat military sexual assault, Gillibrand has established that, win or lose, she has legislative chops.
The Pentagon believes that 26,000 members of the military were sexually assaulted in 2012, but only 3,400 reported attacks.
Under Gillibrands measure, military commanders no longer would have the power to decide which sexual assault cases to try. That power would be given to military prosecutors a step Gillibrand says would increase the number of people who report assaults without fear of retaliation.
In arguing for the bill, Gillibrand has taken on several senior Democrats, including Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mich.). At a hearing, she even dressed down members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
On The Daily Show, Gillibrand announced she has 46 backers for her measure, close to the 51 needed for passage but short of the 60 required to overcome a filibuster. Still, closing in on 50 votes many from across the aisle is a legislative achievement. Gillibrand has sought to meet every senator on the issue and the Senates August break "gives us more time to make the case," she told the Daily News.
Republicans said her polite persistence, factual command and respectful approach established her as a Democrat they wanted to work with.
I was persuaded by Sen. Gillibrands exceptionally passionate and able advocacy, Cruz said at the news conference with Gillibrand last month.
Said Paul, Senator Gillibrand asked to talk to me ... I thought there were one or two things that maybe were included in this that we should exclude (and) she was very open to the discussion."
Support from conservatives like Paul and Cruz shows the bill does not fall into an easy partisan category. It divides lawmakers partly over their willingness to take on the Pentagon.
Gillibrand said she picked the issue because she was heartbroken by the stories of victims. Whatever the motive, the push benefits the senator, too.
Gillibrand, who already headed a political action committee to raise money for female candidates around the U.S., is further boosting her standing with womens groups, said political consultant Hank Sheinkopf.
She is raising her national profile, and she is raising a lot of money for people, he said. That makes her someone in the Senate that people want to talk to.
Why would Cruz et al tarnish their bright images by any association with this piece of execrable garbage?
Uh, you are aware that women vote in presidential elections too, right?
Cruz, Paul and Lee are probably the only three I would trust right now so, could it be that she is right on this? I have not seen the bill but it is possible. As Ronald Reagan once said, “it does not matter who gets credit” if it is the right thing to do.
Are you a concern troll? Or just a member of the circular firing squad?
No, they missed that whole 19th amendment thing.
Just a stab in the dark here..but could it be at their core Libertarians have much more in common with Liberals than Conservatives...
No, Cruz has shown that he’s not just a righteous grandstander. When someone from the opposition has something he can support, he’s a big enough man to work with her to do so.
This is a very good sign of his capacity for statesmanship, and this isn’t the usual GOPe giving away of the store.
Ooh a concern troll! We haven’t had one of those in awhile!
It’s not exactly important legislation, let’s be honest. Its all legal jargon to do with improving how the military deals with sexual assault claims. You’re overreacting.
Gillibrand may be a commie pig, but she’s not puppet master Schumer. She’s probably trying to get something bipartisan on her record because she intends to run for president in a decade or so.
Yes, this does seem like the concern trolls have been convened. You’d think they were both plotting to open a ‘Department of Trannies’ with salaries up to 900 k.
Cruz, Paul and Lee are probably the only three I would trust right now so, could it be that she is right on this? I have not seen the bill but it is possible. As Ronald Reagan once said, it does not matter who gets credit if it is the right thing to do.
First, as far as I am aware, none of the above (to include the odious Gillibrand) has served so much as a single day in the Armed Forces of this country, my first response to them is, butt the h*ll out of this issue.
Second, I do believe — and have already posted as much on another thread — that this is Cruz’s first tactical mistake.
I do believe he is trying to suck up to someone — be it Dems or Libs in general, or, perhaps, as one poster has suggested, women, but... he is not going to help himself much, unless he can serve as a DRAG on the liberal tendencies of Gillibrand.
The entire sexual assault isssue — other than the occasional outlyer - can be laid at the feet of two (easily reversible) causes: 1) Introduction of women to the the military academies, barracks, ships, planes, and tents of our fighting men; and 2) Normalization of sodomy in the military.
Reverse these trends, and problem solved. Women can have their own military academy, fly in all female crews, sail with all female complements, and deploy with all-female platoons, if they are so much needed.
For the sodomites, on the other hand, a reversion back to the UCMJ of 1955 or so will be all that is needed. Bye-bye to the openly light-in-the-loafers crowd, but still room for the homosexuals who are able to “keep it to themselves.”
Politics, especially national politics is not a simple-simon checkers game, it is instead more akin to chess.
I too would not want to get too close to any dems, particularly from Nuevo York, but this issue sounds like a de-fuser for dems War on Women horsehockey.
I just don’t like her getting any traction by associating her name with a guy with actual values like Cruz. With her and Schumer as my senators and Grace Meng, a pro-immigrant uber lib lawyer as my congresscritter, I don’t feel like I have any representation at all. They are all lousy, and I don’t want them climbing out of the abyss of lib garbage they created for themselves. Stay there and leave people with values, like Cruz and the younger Rand alone.
Of course it could be that he agrees with her in this particular case. Even the most evil can be right every now and again.
Ooh a concern troll! We havent had one of those in awhile!
I see it as more of an honest concern on her part as to why Cruz is doing this.. The poster makes clear in a later post that she has nothing but lib dems representing her.
I understand her angst over someone with Cruz’s creds associating himself with Gillibrand over such an issue.
To be clear, however: I voted for Cruz, and I do think a great deal of him.
Cruz is my senator and I’m very proud of him as well.
The American army used to tell us that one of our differences from our Soviet enemies and one of their military weaknesses, was them having political officers looking over the shoulders of the regular army personnel.
Cruz and Rand are smart men. This ditz wouldn’t get anything past them. If anything, being anywhere near the Cruz name will hurt Gillibrand with her base of communist professors and abortion-loving single women.
I feel sorry for you being in NY. That sucks. Schmuck Schumer and this skank for representation. Oh, and Maoist Meng is always a plus. Reminds me of the late Chairman’s stir crazy wife.
Could be worse. You could be represented by Bernie Sanders.
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