March 29, 2017

Cowardly Bill Nelson Bows To Liberal Pressure

Yesterday Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) announced that he will join the attempted filibuster of Judge Neil Gorsuch’s Supreme Court nomination. In doing so Senator Nelson removed all doubt that his number one priority is his own political survival. After all, Nelson voted to confirm Gorsuch back in 2006. What’s changed now is that Nelson is facing a serious primary threat.

Nelson’s potential primary opponents have noticed his change in behavior. One possible challenger, state Senator Randolph Bracy, remarked to Politico that Nelson was likely “influenced” by the potential primary challenge:

“’Bill Nelson is usually a centrist on issues like this, but he may be influenced by talk of him having a primary opponent,’ said state Sen. Randolph Bracy, who’s considering challenging the senator in a primary.”

Another politician who has been floated as a primary challenger, Pam Keith, implied that establishment Democrats like Nelson are running scared of the grassroots anger on the Democratic side:

“Pam Keith, a 2016 U.S. Senate candidate also mulling a bid against Nelson, said in a text message exchange that ‘Nelson VERY much is feeling the pressure, as are many Dems in DC.’ ‘Bottom-line is that the base is far more strident than they are,’ Keith continued, adding that rank-and-file Democrats have much to lose if their elected officials help Trump. ‘The grassroots could give a damn about ‘collegiality” or decorum in the halls of Congress. I think the leaders are learning that the appetite for outright obstruction is as high on our side as it ever was for the Tea Party.’”

According to Politico, people close to Nelson weren’t surprised by his Gorsuch announcement because “the party is shifting left and so is he.” This weather vane style of politics is about as weak as you can get. Nelson’s lack of a spine will not serve him well for the tough 2018 that is coming his way.