Our View: The nine — how could they?

Posted: December 19, 2013

As expected, the bipartisan budget “deal” passed the Senate on Wednesday — with room to spare. Nine Republicans joined all 55 Democrats in voting “Aye.”

Given details about the budgetary blueprint that largely escaped notice until the Senate started deliberations — namely a reduction in veterans benefits, even to disabled combat vets — we’re surprised any Republicans voted to support the measure. But nine did so — Johnny Isakson, Saxby Chambliss, Susan Collins, John Hoeven, Orrin Hatch, Ron Johnson, Rob Portman, Lisa Murkowski, and, most shockingly, John McCain.

We understand — nay, we applaud — any desire for economy, but veterans benefits? Certainly, there had to be other avenues to achieve savings.

Alabama Republican Jeff Sessions thought so, and he offered an appropriate amendment, only to see it rebuffed. He earns our praise; his nine GOP colleagues, our pique.