Even though some progressives and tea party members both rebelled against the debt ceiling compromise in the end it passed the House, but the surprise was an appearance by Rep. Gabby Giffords on the House floor.
Here’s the C-SPAN video of Giffords on the House floor from Mediaite:
Before the vote Nancy Pelosi took to the House floor before the vote to try to rally Democrats to support the bill, and even though her lukewarm support for the bill shined through she urged her colleagues to think about senior citizens, the full faith and credit of America, the 18 month extension of the debt ceiling, and the 50/50 cut split in the trigger mechanism. Pelosi argued that we can’t allow seniors, veterans, and the middle class to be caught in the destruction caused by this Congress if the US defaults
Pelosi admitted that even though she supports the president she is on the fence about this bill, and she urged her colleagues to think about what would happen if we defaulted and to think about the collateral damage that a default would cause to seniors and veterans. She said she respected and understood why her Democratic colleagues would not vote for the bill, but she repeatedly emphasized the consequences of default, and urged them to vote for it.
All of that got put aside as Gabrielle Giffords returned to the House floor to rally support for the bipartisan debt bill. The chamber broke into unanimous applause, as Giffords’ office tweeted, “Gabrielle has returned to Washington to support a bipartisan bill to prevent economic crisis. Turn on C-SPAN now.”
The debt ceiling compromise that nobody likes passed the House, 269-161, but the big uplifting news after a somber ugly week was the return of Rep. Gabreille Giffords to the House floor. Democrats and Republicans both got welcome and much needed burst of good feeling at the sight of Gabby Giffords back on the House floor.
The picture of Giffords returning to the House should remind us all that as bitter as our nation’s political battles can be, there are more important things in this world than politics. Giffords’ appearance should provide hope to us all that she will be able to put that horrible day in Tucson behind her and someday return to work.
If Gabby Giffords can push on and triumph no matter what political obstacles are place in front of us, we can too.