I’ve got a call into John Ensign’s Communications Director for confirmation now, but it sounds like John Ensign is the one Senator referenced in Harry Reid’s statement last night and Dodd’s statement a few minutes ago on the Senate floor. That is, because John Ensign has refused to a unanimous consent agreement on the housing bill, he is holding up everything the Senate is doing right now.

That means Ensign is preventing the thousands of Nevadans facing foreclosure–Nevada’s foreclosure rate rivals even Michigan’s–from the relief that the housing bill in the Senate will give them.

But because Reid has said the Senate has to get housing done before it gets anything else done, it means Ensign is also standing between a bunch of veterans and the expanded GI bill included in the supplemental bill. And a bunch of people who’ve been looking for jobs hoping to get an extension on their unemployment benefits. And doctors hoping to be compensated fairly, in a new Medicare bill, for treating our nation’s seniors.

Of course, it’s not all bad. We FISA bloggers owe Ensign a debt of gratitude, it looks like. Because he’s blocking unanimous consent on housing, we may be able to push out FISA beyond the July 4 break. So thank you, John Ensign, for standing in the way of the shredding of the Constitution.

If you’re a Nevada resident, you might want to call Ensign at (202) 224-6244 and ask him why he’s preventing Nevada homeowners from getting some alternatives to losing their house.

But if you’re not a Nevada resident, you might want to call Ensign and thank him for standing up to the evil telecoms who illegally spied on American citizens.

Update: Corrected Medicare language per cboldt.



Marcy Wheeler aka Emptywheel is an American journalist whose reporting specializes in security and civil liberties.