Wanna know who was happiest when it was decided to attach an authorization for military action and assistance in Syria to a short-term continuing appropriations resolution? Officials and supporters of the Export-Import Bank. Until then this underlying measure was a big fat target for conservative groups wanting to kill Exim, since it included a renewal of the bank’s charter for another year.

As Dave Weigel explains at Slate today, the IS language changed everything, leading the Club for Growth to withdraw its earlier decision to demand a “no” vote as a “scored” measure. To put it more simply, the vote became “about” IS rather than Exim or even “government spending.” So it passed with relatively ease.

Lord knows how many sponsors of other controversial legislative actions wish they had thought to huddle under the shelter of this suddenly very different appropriations bill. I guess that’s why some lobbyists make the big bucks, but others make the monstrously big bucks.

Our ideas can save democracy... But we need your help! Donate Now!

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.