Senate rebuffs Bob Dole's appeal for passage disability treaty

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    Senate rebuffs Dole's appeal for passage of UN disability treaty
    The Kansas City Star

    Former U.S. Sen. Bob Dole, his 89-year old body now weakened by age, illness and war injuries, sat quietly in a wheelchair on the Senate floor Tuesday, watching the debate over a United Nations treaty on the rights of the disabled.
    He may have recalled an earlier time.

    More than 43 years ago, Dole delivered his first speech on the very same floor - on disability rights. Later, as one of the most powerful members of the Senate, he pushed through the Americans with Disabilities Act, a measure designed to protect citizens grappling with accidents and disease.

    Now he had come the Senate floor, perhaps for the last time, to persuade lawmakers to adopt a treaty supporters said would extend disability protections around the world.

    "Don't let Sen. Bob Dole down," Democratic Sen. John Kerry of Massachusetts said, raising his voice, pointing at his former colleague. "Most importantly, don't let the Senate and the country down. Approve this treaty."
    It wasn't enough.

    Only 61 senators voted for the treaty, officially known as the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Sixty-six votes were needed for passage. ...

    ... Among the 38 members voting against the measure: The two senators from Kansas, Republicans Jerry Moran and Pat Roberts. Both have known Dole for years. ...

    ... But other Republicans - including Sen. John McCain of Arizona, who like Dole suffers from a war-related disability - pushed for approval, reading a statement from Dole into the record.
    "That's what this is all about," McCain said. "American leadership."
    Dole was accompanied to the floor by his wife Elizabeth, herself a former senator. Senate rules allow former members access to the floor, although it is rarely used. ...
    lindarn, nrsang97, and aknottedyarn like this.

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  3. 20 Comments...

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    So sad that one important piece of legislation Sen. Dole got accomplished and has been adopted by the UN does not get US support. This subject crossed all kinds of barriers and has allowed those with physical challenges to get a fair deal. All that was wanted was to support the treaty to have that kind of access and response more world wide.

    Shame on those who do not recognize the importance of this treaty.
    cherryames1949, nrsang97, somenurse, and 1 other like this.
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    I think Sen Dole was a republican back in an era when they were worth a damn.
    Esme12, aknottedyarn, Elvish, and 1 other like this.
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    Quote from StNeotser
    I think Sen Dole was a republican back in an era when they were worth a damn.
    Some of them are now.
    Those who voted, "No." seem mean.
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    In fairness, we should look at the reasons why those who voted no looked so darn mean. Nothing in what you copied here told the other side of the story. So from your link:
    "I do not support the cumbersome regulations and potentially overzealous international organizations with anti-American biases that infringe upon American society," said Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla.

    Roberts and Missouri Sen. Roy Blunt, who also voted no, had earlier written Senate leadership, asking it to withdraw the treaty until next year. Treaties, they argued, should not be decided in a lame duck session.

    But by Tuesday he had changed his mind. "Genuine concerns raised by the language of this treaty ... have made it clear that foreign officials should not be put in a position to interfere with U.S. policymaking," his statement said.

    And another side of the story:

    U.N. Treaty on the Rights of the Disabled - Betsy Woodruff - National Review Online

    Brace yourselves, everyone, because here’s something that might be surprising: Elected officials who vote against the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities don’t necessarily hate disabled people. Strange but true! In fact, a number of leaders in Washington vehemently oppose the treaty, and for good reason: Senate ratification wouldn’t accomplish anything substantial for Americans. It wouldn’t significantly improve the living conditions of disabled people overseas, and it could potentially undermine American sovereignty.........
    If you read the entire article, there seem to be many reasoned arguments against this treaty and it has absolutely nothing to do with hating disabled people or being mean.

    You can disagree - but it is only fair to let the other side tell it's story. I had not been following this story at all but the comment about being mean made me think I should actually do some research on WHY folks voted no. Instead of having a knee-jerk reaction. No offense intended here because I used to be guilty of this myself before coming on allnurses. Then I learned to look deeper because some smart person on here would come and tell me the real story.

    This isn't about being mean. It is a difference of opinion on whether this is smart for our country. As stated in the article, we have very strong support for folks with disabilities.

    (Sometimes that can be taken to extremes but that's another thread )

    Medic2RN and VickyRN like this.
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    The vote was for the United States to approve the United Nations support for disabled people having rights.
    Of course it won't improve the lives of people in America. It lets the disabled people know we support them having the same rights disabled people have in the United States.

    Those who voted "no" distrust or disapprove of the United Nations.
    It was not an anti disabled vote. It was an anti UN vote.
    tewdles, kabfighter, nrsang97, and 2 others like this.
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    The vast majority of republicans voting against this, had zero to do with the USA. The USA ALREADY HAS these standards in place, since the first disability act of the 60s was passed. Nothing in the USA would have changed. This idea was COPYING what the USA already does, for decades now. This would have been asking the REST of the nations to follow our lead, in allowing access to busses, trains, airports, etc,
    which would be great for disabled americans (especially our veterans) who travel overseas to avoid the indignities of not being allowed into this building or that train, to have a wheelchair access toilet in the building, etc.

    I did kinda chuckle at the comments above, about having other nations follow the USA's example of how to allow access to buildings for disabled people, would, in any way, "threaten US sovereignty"??? what? If France or Romania decides they will ensure ramps, toilets, buses etc, are wheelchair access, how in the world would THAT make USA less of sovereign nation??? seems a bit far-fetched, doncha think?

    This is just the "Party of No" at it again. Lol, they even vote against their own ideas, if presented by democrat. Same exact idea they wrote up, even just months before, but, slammed down if presented by "other side"..
    some of their obstructionism is just baffling, like their voting against the "Jobs for Veterans" bill, of Setp 2012, just hard to understand their voting against it.
    tewdles, cherryames1949, herring_RN, and 1 other like this.
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    Harry Reid Questions GOP's Rationality On Fiscal Cliff After Disability Treaty Fails
    Republicans opposed ratification of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons With Disabilities Tuesday, based on the debunked grounds that it threatens United States sovereignty and the rights of homeschoolers.
    "Consider yesterday's failure, the disabilities convention, at the hands of the Tea Party," Reid said on the Senate floor. "This shouldn't have been a battle, but extreme elements of the Republican Party picked a fight where there was nothing to fight about."
    tewdles, somenurse, cherryames1949, and 1 other like this.
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    John Kerry - United States Senator for Massachusetts : Press Room - Floor Statements
    John Kerry - United States Senator for Massachusetts : Press Room
    This is one of the saddest days I’ve seen in almost 28 years in the Senate and it needs to be a wakeup call about a broken institution that's letting down the American people,” said Sen. Kerry. “We need to fix this place because what happens and doesn’t happen here affects millions of lives. Today the dysfunction hurt veterans and the disabled and that’s unacceptable. This treaty was supported by every veterans group in America and Bob Dole made an inspiring and courageous personal journey back to the Senate to fight for it. It had bipartisan support, and it had the facts on its side, and yet for one ugly vote, none of that seemed to matter. We won’t give up on this and the Disabilities Treaty will pass because it’s the right thing to do, but today I understand better than ever before why Americans have such disdain for Congress and just how much must happen to fix the Senate so we can act on the real interests of our country.”
    tewdles, somenurse, cherryames1949, and 1 other like this.
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    tewdles, cherryames1949, and herring_RN like this.

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