In the US they like to describe the US Senate as “the world’s greatest deliberative body”.
Supreme Court Chief Justice, John Roberts, repeated the claim when he presided over the Senate Trump impeachment trial.
So what sort of people do the deliberating? Well , the latest is the newly-elected Senator from Alabama, Tommy Tuberville.
Senator-elect Tuberville appeared on election night to celebrate his victory. He started by talking about the fact that Republicans looked liked having Senate control and said: “You know our government wasn’t set up for one group to have all three branches of government. It wasn’t set up that way, our three branches, the House, the Senate and the executive.”
He then proceeded to pay tribute to his and his family’s life-long fight against socialism.
“You know as I tell people, my dad fought 76 years ago in Europe to free Europe of socialism.
“My dad quit school at 16 to join the Army and landed at Normandy at 18 and drove a tank across Europe and never forgot the look on people’s faces when we liberated Paris from socialism and communism.”
Now it doesn’t need mentioning that the three branches of the US government are the executive, the legislature and the judiciary.
But liberating Paris from communism was a new one for most people – except perhaps the people of Alabama who elected him.
Alabama – just the name conjures up images of the Civil War and the Civil Rights era – and nowadays 69.1% of the population is white with many of the African Americans who once lived there having taken the opportunity to migrate north.
It’s no shakes in the educational achievement field with 22% of the population having a college degree compared with a nationwide figure of 25%. The figure was a bit higher a couple of years ago but presumably some of the recent graduates moved to greener pastures.
At the other end of the educational scale 15.2% of the population don’t have even a high school diploma although the percentage of Alabamans with a high school diploma is a touch higher than the national average.
The likelihood of running into anyone from France is low with only 800 foreign born people living in the State although 0.3% of the population speak French or French creole – possibly refugees from New Orleans whose homes have still not been rebuilt 15 years after Katrina.
Like much of the South it has lots of veterans – 335,000 plus – but as Alabaman life expectancy average of 75.4 years is 48th in the nation it is unlikely that many of them are World War II veterans.
So all in all one can imagine a lot of Senator-elect Turberville’s voters believe him.
He can also probably discuss history with the outgoing President who has similar problems with WWII both in terms of who were allies and what ended it.