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Time's list of the best and worst Senators

Old 04-19-06, 08:56 AM
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Time's list of the best and worst Senators

http://www.time.com/time/magazine/ar...0.html?cnn=yes

<b>The Best Senators</b>

Thad Cochran (R-AL)
Kent Conrad (D-ND)
Dick Durbin (D-IL)
Ted Kennedy (D-MA)
Jon Kyl (R-AZ)
Carl Levin (D-MI)
Richard Lugar (R-IN)
John McCain (R-AZ)
Olympia J. Snowe (R-ME)
Arlen Specter (R-PA)

<b>The Worst Senators</b>

Daniel Akaka (D-HI)
Wayne Allard (R-CO)
Jim Bunning (R-KY)
Conrad Burns (R-MT)
Mark Dayton (D-MN)

<b>America's 10 Best Senators</b>
Those who make a difference in the U.S. Senate — and five Senators who are falling short
By MASSIMO CALABRESI AND PERRY BACON JR.

By law, just about anyone can be a U.S. Senator. The Constitution requires only that you have reached your 30th birthday, reside in the state you represent and have held American citizenship for nine years. But if the framers made qualifying for the job easy, they made excelling at it difficult. James Madison called the Senate a "fence" against the "fickleness and passion" of public opinion, and the rules of the place ensure that it is as cumbersome and restrictive as that sounds. Any of the 100 members can try to change, or completely hijack, another member's bill as it comes up for a vote. And any one of them can bring the place to a halt with a filibuster. Mastering a powerful institution that relies on comity but requires confrontation takes a special kind of talent.

Or talents. There is no fixed journey to greatness in the Senate. Instead there is a whole variety of skills that America's Senators have developed over 218 years to help them raise and spend tax dollars, oversee the operation of government and, in the case of the best among them, pass laws that benefit their constituents, their country and the world. <b>Time spoke to dozens of academics, political scientists and current and former Senators to pick the 10 best of the 109th Congress.</b> One made it because he puts unsexy but important issues on the national agenda, another because his backroom negotiating turns conflict into consensus. A third got on the list for his diligent bird-dogging of Enron, Homeland Security and the Pentagon. Then there's the prodigious across-the-aisle dealer, the fierce defender of her constituents and the expert who sees around corners. As with any all-star team, we sought a broad range of gifts rather than settling on 10 great pitchers or middle linebackers.

They say the Senate is the world's most exclusive club. But the real elite is made up not of those who break in but of those who make a difference once they get there. Here are 10 who do.
My comments: I think Senator Kennedy was an obvious choice, given his considerable legislative skiils, although he's no longer as effective as he used to be. Senator Specter seems to be a remarkably effective committee chair. I think Orrin Hatch should have been on the list.

I certainly agree with the assessments of Bunning and Dayton.

As far as the numbers of the 10 best, six were Republicans, and of the five worst, three were from the GOP.

Last edited by wendersfan; 04-19-06 at 01:33 PM.
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Old 04-19-06, 08:57 AM
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Do you have a link to the article? By what standard/measure were they determining who was "best"?
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Old 04-19-06, 08:58 AM
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Originally Posted by nemein
Do you have a link to the article? By what standard/measure were they determining who was "best"?
Sorry, I got distracted and clicked 'Submit' too soon. I'll go back and edit the original post.
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Old 04-19-06, 08:58 AM
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I'm amazed Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) wasn't on the list. I don't know anyone who thinks she is doing a good job representing our state.
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Old 04-19-06, 09:04 AM
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Oh, and in before <b>classicman</b>'s inevitable Ken Salazar comment.

All the 'best' Democrats were on the left of the party's Senate delegation.
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Old 04-19-06, 10:19 AM
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Seeing Ted Kennedy on the Best side just invalidates the entire list. 4 of the best rep sens they picked are RINOs. Figures from the leftoid press.
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Old 04-19-06, 10:23 AM
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Kennedy is a very effective senator in moving legislation. You may not like him or his views, but he has always done his job extremely well.
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Old 04-19-06, 10:35 AM
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Originally Posted by bhk
Seeing Ted Kennedy on the Best side just invalidates the entire list. 4 of the best rep sens they picked are RINOs. Figures from the leftoid press.
This is exactly the sort of biased, uninformed reaction I expected in this thread.
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Old 04-19-06, 10:41 AM
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Originally Posted by bhk
Seeing Ted Kennedy on the Best side just invalidates the entire list. 4 of the best rep sens they picked are RINOs. Figures from the leftoid press.
I can see him being on it. While I think he is a buffoon who is full of it, he is very effective at trying to spread buffoonery, which means he gets stuff done. I don't think they defined "best" the same way you would have.
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Old 04-19-06, 10:45 AM
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Originally Posted by kvrdave
I can see him being on it. While I think he is a buffoon who is full of it, he is very effective at trying to spread buffoonery, which means he gets stuff done. I don't think they defined "best" the same way you would have.
Senator Kennedy is the individual most responsible for what is probably the most significant domestic program of the Bush administration. He isn't just one of the best current Senators, he's also one of the best Senators in history. His personal life and his ideology have no bearing on this at all.
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Old 04-19-06, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by General Zod
I'm amazed Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) wasn't on the list. I don't know anyone who thinks she is doing a good job representing our state.
If anyone from CA is on that list, I vote for Boxer.
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Old 04-19-06, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by wendersfan
Senator Kennedy is the individual most responsible for what is probably the most significant domestic program of the Bush administration. He isn't just one of the best current Senators, he's also one of the best Senators in history. His personal life and his ideology have no bearing on this at all.
So we're saying the same thing.
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Old 04-19-06, 11:22 AM
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Originally Posted by kvrdave
So we're saying the same thing.
Well, duh. Great minds and all that...
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Old 04-19-06, 11:57 AM
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Where is Ted Stevens on the "worst" list?
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Old 04-19-06, 12:45 PM
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So where's Barack?
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Old 04-19-06, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by joeydaninja
So where's Barack?
Maybe he's one of the 85 Senators that fall in the middle?
Or, maybe he's not been in the Senate long enough for any kind of evaluation?
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Old 04-19-06, 01:04 PM
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he was on their list of up and comers
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Old 04-19-06, 01:06 PM
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btw, Levin should lose points for the horrible comb over
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Old 04-19-06, 01:08 PM
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I wonder how high he and Hillary would rank if they listed them all? Though I guess listing them all would've made them all too competitive with one another. Kind of like the Premiere Power List, an opinion by a third party publication that the interested parties' PR machines would try to influence. Though I'm sure those already right now not in the top 10 are yelling at their staffers, wouldn't want to know what the bottom 5 are doing Those in the bottom will have a tough campaign for reelection and their opponents will have to thank Time magazine for their "gift".

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Old 04-19-06, 01:18 PM
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Silly...only 3 of those names should be in the top 10.

I can think of at least 2 or 3 Democratic senators that I think should be on instead, and a couple of Republicans as well.

I generally like the moderates on both sides of the aisle and believe that they are ultimately the most effective at finding common ground...as opposed to wheeling and dealing to get their legislation passed.
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Old 04-19-06, 01:29 PM
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Kent Conrad, unless he's moved in the last day or two, is from ND - not CO.

I do agree. I think he's one of the very best senators - centrist who understands the budget and budget matters better than anyone in the senate.
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Old 04-19-06, 01:32 PM
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Originally Posted by classicman2
Kent Conrad, unless he's moved in the last day or two, is from ND - not CO.

I do agree. I think he's one of the very best senators - centrist who understands the budget and budget matters better than anyone in the senate.
Sorry, I typed the states in myself. I hadn't had my coffee yet.
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Old 04-19-06, 01:44 PM
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Agreed that Kennedy should be on the "best" list.

Saddenned that they didn't issue a list of "bad" and "worst" Cabinet members.
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Old 04-19-06, 02:13 PM
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Any list of bad senators that doesn't include Ted Stevens and Rick Santorum is simply a joke.
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Old 04-19-06, 05:09 PM
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Ted Stevens, like Kennedy, is an extremely effective senator. He represents his state as good as anyone in the senate.
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