Like with the other ‘big guy,’ Democrats bent the rules for Senate’s Fetterman

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By Bill Juneau, September 30, 2023

The towering senator from Pennsylvania, John Fetterman, is going to have to abandon his hooded sweatshirt, golf shorties and sneakers if he intends to participate in legislative rhetoric on the senate floor in the capitol building in Washington, D.C. But he says he will do it to “save democracy.”

The order for a formal dress code for the 100 members of the U.S. Senate, the upper house of Congress, was put into place a few days ago by Majority leader Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat. It wiped out Schumer’s “Fetterman Dress Code” of 10 days earlier in which he okayed a “come as you are” code of attire, which was grounded on the desire to accommodate the troubled Fetterman and allow him to wear his hoodies and short pants to sessions on the floor and at committee hearings. [Similar accommodations have been made for the man former Hunter Biden associate Tony Bobulinski famously cited as the “big guy.”]

Shortly after Fetterman won the Democratic primary for Pennsylvania senator in May of 2022, he suffered a debilitating stroke, but opted to remain as a candidate. … Fetterman’s wife, Gisele, described the stroke as just a “a little hiccup,” and predicted that he would grow in strength.

The Fetterman-sweet dress code was done to assist the recovering big guy, who at six-feet, eight inches tall is the giant of the Senate. He has been troubled with cognitive issues and speaking problems due to a stroke last year followed in 2023 with severe depression.

Schumer’s rewriting of a dress code so as to allow Fetterman, who some say is a ringer for “Lurch” who became famous in TV’s The Addams Family, to wear his hoodies and lounging clothes, and flip-flops if preferred, triggered complaints from other senators. To demonstrate his annoyance with the new “Fetterman Rules,” Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky showed up barefoot and wearing a red bathrobe for a session on the floor of the senate.

Sen. Joe Manchin, Democrat of West Virginia who often challenges the laws set down by Majority leader Schumer and the Party of the Jackass, let it be known that he planned to introduce a resolution calling for a dress code of suit and tie for men and appropriate attire for the woman members of the senate which is regarded by many as the most elite and exclusive club in the USA.

Faced with the dissent, Schumer rolled back his redo order and put forth a formal dress code in writing which will mandate suit and ties, sports coats and slacks for men, and appropriate business-like attire for the distaff members.

Caught in the halls of the capitol still wearing a dark-hooded sweatshirt, Fetterman told a reporter, “don’t you think that we have many more important issues to deal with than a dress code”? What is important is what is going on inside a person, not what he is wearing, the somewhat peeved Fetterman told a newsman. But yes, he said he would wear a suit so as “to save democracy–but there are conditions.”

Another newsman reported that Fetterman said that Republicans must pass a government funding bill and support Ukraine in order for him to suit up.

“If those jagoffs in the House (meaning Republicans) stop trying to shut our government down, he asserted, and fully support Ukraine, then I will save democracy by wearing a suit on the Senate floor….”

A mayor for 16 years at Braddock, Pennsylvania, a community with 1,721 residents; and Lt. Governor of the state for three years, Fetterman was elected in 2022 as a Democratic senator and was sworn into office on Jan. 3, 2023. The election was close and controversial with arguments and comments concerning Fetterman’s acuity, and his ability to speak sensibly or respond to questions asked him. Fetterman’s style is similar in many respects to the stammering, gaffe-filled rhetoric of President Biden who campaigned hard for Fetterman’s election.

Fetterman was elected with 51 per cent of the votes cast, defeating TV’s medical doctor, Mehmet Oz, a Republican, who had gained popularity as a frequent guest and weight adviser to pudgy Oprah Winfrey on her TV show.

Shortly after Fetterman won the Democratic primary for Pennsylvania senator in May of 2022, he suffered a debilitating stroke, but opted to remain as a candidate. His supporters and Democratic leaders downplayed the seriousness of the malady, and kept him out of the spotlight as much as possible. Fetterman’s wife, Gisele, described the stroke as just a “a little hiccup,” and predicted that he would grow in strength.

So, as of now, Fetterman is going to be suited and promises to vote the Democratic menu; and his rhetoric and legislative activity is said to be improving. The chamber’s Sergeant at Arms office installed a permanent live-captioning display at Fetterman’s desk that can be raised or lowered, depending on whether the towering pol is standing or sitting.

The senator has said that he endorses abortion as a woman’s right to choose right up to those seconds before the baby draws its first breath. Also, he supports a $15 per hour minimum wage. He advocates legalizing cannabis, abolishing capital punishment and making health care a right for all Americans.

As a U.S. senator, Fetterman is paid $174,000 annually with perks. According to reports he has a net worth of $2 million. He and his wife Gisele have three children and they have two dogs, Levi and Artie, and both have twitter accounts with 25,000 followers. The Fettermans have lived in Braddock since 2006 in a remodeled chevrolet dealership building.

Bill Juneau worked for 25 years as a reporter and night city editor at the Chicago Tribune. Subsequently he became a partner in a law firm and also served as a village prosecutor and as a consultant to the Cook County Circuit Court and to the Cook County Medical Examiner. He is currently writing columns and the ‘Florida Bill‘ blog.