Most analysis of the shameful US Congressional vote on the Goldstone report have stressed the continuing power of the Israel lobby and noted that this was essentially a vote to make Israel exempt from international law – which has been more-or-less the case in practice for many years. Looking carefully into the details of the vote and comparing it to the vote to endorse Israel's assault on Gaza in December 2008-January 2009, Philip Weiss notes that the Israel lobby has actually lost 46 votes in Congress in less than a year. While the Palestinian people have paid a high price for this – and will likely continue to pay more for such "accomplishments" – in the context of US politics, even this small change is very notable. – Joel Beinin
After Gaza, the lobby lost 46 votes in Congress
by Philip Weiss on November 5, 2009 • 6 comments
Here is the evidence that between the House voting overwhelmingly in January to support Israel's Gaza slaughter (H Res 34), and the vote to condemn the Goldstone report the other day (H Res 867), the lobby lost some power. I'd say that the kryptonite was Gaza itself, which has resonated in countless ways. Though J Street may also deserve credit for giving pols political cover.
What follows is a friend's analysis of the vote. Note that a couple of the congresspeople who lost religion on Gaza had visited the place (Holt, Ellison, Edwards).
H.RES.34 (JAN 09): 390 yeas, 5 nays, 22 presents, and 16 no votes.
H.RES.867 (NOV 09): 344 yeas, 36 nays, 22 presents, and 30 no votes.
Similarities and difference between January and November votes:
Compared to January, three fewer Republicans yesterday voted yea; 43 fewer Dems voted yea yesterday; the numbers of those voting present were identical; there were 14 more non-votes, which this means that 14 people could have been on the fence about speaking their minds…
Abercrombie; Blumenauer; Dingell; Edwards (MD); Ellison; Grijalva; Hinchey; Kilpatrick (MI); Lee (CA); McCollum; McDermott; George Miller; Moran (VA); Olver; Stark; and Woolsey went from present in Jan to No vote yesterday
Baird and Snyder went from not voting to nay.
Regarding those who voted yea in January, Becerra, Cooper, Dahlkemper, Duncan, Eshoo, Heinrich, Hirono, Honda, Kaptur, Loebsack, Lofgren, Lujn, Obey, Speier, Tierney, Welch, and Wu went from yea to present. Ackerman, Bachmann, Barret (SC), Brady (PA), Capuano, Conyers, Davis (AL), David (TN), Deal (GA), Gordon (TN), Gutierrez, Hall (NY), Holt, Meeks (NY), Patrick Murphy, Nunes, Pallone, Pascrell, Pingree (ME), Price (GA), Linda T. Sanchez, Sires, Souder, Stupak, Towns, Velazquez, and Wamp went from yea to no vote.
All information concerning H.Res.34 comes from House clerk. All information concerning H.Res.867 comes from House clerk.
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