Update 11:44am Eastern. The vote: 17-4. LOST moves to the Senate floor. Stay tuned.
And dial your Senators: 202-224-3121.
Update 11:25am Eastern. Joe Biden rejects Sen. David Vitter’s request for an additional hearing on LOST. Biden attacks Frank Gaffney and Fred Smith for their opposition to the treaty. Biden moves to hold a vote on Vitter’s motion; interrupted by a few objections. Sens. Coleman and Isakson object to Vitter’s motion despite their questions about LOST. Vitter withdraws his motion. Sen. Murkowski speaks up to support LOST.
Sen. Coleman voices concern about LOST on security grounds. “Are we in a war today? Is it a war on terror? Does that have implication here? Dispute settlement mechanisms would allow international agencies to take action against US Navy…cites Jeremy Rabkin’s analysis. Coleman opposes moving LOST to the Senate floor.
Biden is waiting for Sen. Cardin. Remainder of agenda voted on, passes. Calls roll for LOST vote…
Update 11:07am Eastern. No quorum yet. Joe Biden makes an opening statement about LOST.
Blogger Rob Bluey writes: “Keep an eye on Senators John Sununu (N.H.), George Voinovich (Ohio), Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) and Johnny Isakson (Ga.).” He’s put together a YouTube playlist of LOST commentary. Heritage Foundation resources here.
National Review lambastes the Bush administration for supporting the push America to submit to supra-national agencies under U.N. control. It’s part of an alarming pattern:
Why do this?
Well, it seems to be part of a pattern. That pattern includes also the astonishing decision of the Bush White House to seek the overriding of Texas law on the death penalty in deference to the World Court. What we are seeing is an outbreak of Tranzi-ism in the administration. Cowed by accusations of earlier “unilateralism,” the administration now bends over backwards to placate the “international community.” The permanent bureaucracy at the U.S. State Department has long been in the grip of this tendency. Since the departure of John Bolton, our diplomatic officialdom seems to have kept a pliant administration, including both president and secretary of state, under its sway. As a result we may soon be relying on a U.N. bureaucracy to maintain the freedom of the seas essential to our trade, commerce, and military alliances.
No doubt this policy is cheaper than a larger Navy — but it is no substitute for one.
The U.S. Senate is scheduled to vote today on the ratification of the United Nations’ Law of the Sea Treaty, a wide-ranging measure critics say will grant the U.N. control of the 70 percent of the planet under its oceans.
With Democrats in nearly unanimous agreement with the treaty and the Bush administration behind it, it will be up to a handful of determined Republican senators to derail it.
Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell has indicated he will oppose the plan, and other senators have indicated they have heard from constituents who are afraid of the proposal.
“In the same way that the people prevailed in the Senate in the matter of defeating the illegal alien amnesty bill, it is entirely possible that the U.N. power grab known officially as the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) could be rejected,” one commentator noted.
“If you want a U.N. on steroids, you want the Law of the Sea Treaty,” Sen. Trent Lott, R-Miss., has said.
A two-thirds vote is required for approval, meaning only 34 “no” votes can kill it.
Stand by for the vote…