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12/20/09

ThinkProgress Falsely Blames McCain For Not Yielding Time In Debate

Senator Al Franken made an unprecedented motion of contempt for Joe Lieberman as he interrupted his debate and objected to giving him another minute. video

The liberal site ThinkProgress objects when McCain points out this uncivility and claims McCain himself did this, in an unrelated case years ago.

Thinkprogress takes just a snippet of quotes so that it looks like McCain flat out objected to another 30 seconds of debate by Dayton. But that's not the case. McCain wasn't the presiding officer in that case, as Franken was. And he actually did allow time to be yielded. Byrd wasn't asking for more time, as ThinkProgress falsely reports, he was asking that his extra time used not be counted against him, so in effect it would count against McCain:

Mr. DAYTON. Will the Senator yield for a question?

Mr. McCAIN. Not on our time. If the Senator from West Virginia would like to yield the Senator time, I would be more than happy...

The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator's time has expired.

Mr. DAYTON. I ask for unanimous consent that I have 30 seconds more to finish my remarks.

Mr. McCAIN. I object.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Objection is heard.

Mr. BYRD. I yield the Senator 2 minutes or whatever he needs....

Mr. BYRD. I thank the Chair. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that my time on this amendment not count against my hour under cloture.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Is there objection?

Mr. McCAIN. I object.

The PRESIDING OFFICER. Objection is heard.

Mr. BYRD. This shows the patience of a Senator. This clearly demonstrates that the train is coming down on us like a Mack truck, and we are not even going to consider a few extra minutes for this Senator....

Mr. McCAIN. On my time. In deference to the Senator from West Virginia, on this one occasion, given all the circumstances, I will not object to it not counting against the Senator's hour.

Mr. BYRD. Mr. President, I thank my friend.

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