Saturday, April 16, 2005

Juggling Swords.

The Senate Republican Leadership is considering the so-called "nuclear option", namely changing the operating rules by which judicial nominees are confirmed (requiring a simple majority confirmation rather than a supermajority).

It's bad idea, for a lot of reasons based on good conservative principles. George Will recently detailed its dangers, and suggested alternate strategies. I've got another strategy the GOP should employ. One thing a Senator covets more than a principle is ...patronage. I wonder how many Democrat Senators would stand their ground on stopping these supposed "retrograde" judges if they had to sacrifice their state's new water projects, post offices, and the like. Take away Robert Byrd's bottomless pit of govenment-supplied asphalt for West Virginia roads...he'll be hands up in favor of these nominees by the end of the day. Let's Play Real Hardball.


Trotsky said...

Are you suggesting that the Dems are the only ones concerned about patronage. The republicans are just as concerned about their special interests as the Dems.

Take for example Alaskan Senator Frank Murkowski. He is know, and continues to be elected, for his ability to "bring home the bacon". Why is it that this sparsely populated state brings home a large amount of the money it sends to Washington. How about Mr. Delay and his special interests. Please don't run the patronage issue in a light that somehow suggests this is purly a Democratic ill. I think that patronage is an ill of far too much of Capitol Hill on both sides of the aisle.

Why is it that the republican party in congress is allowed to freely call the judiciary "revisionist" because they are "taking a stand for ethics and law" (but they are many of them pandering to their base); but if the Dems take a position they are being purly obstructionists? Could it be that the Dems feel that these Judges are reactionary? Could it be that they feel strongly about the ethics of these judges, particularly when many of these proposed judges are unwilling to release their papers for scrutiny? The senate and the people of the US have the right to know the opinions of those who will sit in these positions. Any prospective justice who is unwilling to be forthright in their confirmation process should be told to go beat a path home. If you aren't guilty, you don't have much fear of scrutiny.

It amazes me sometimes how blith the conservatives are in the belief of their righteousness. Apparently at least 59 million people didn't agree with the conservative agenda. When reviewing the numbers that is 59 to 62 million, that works out to 48% to 51%. I think Americans did tell the conservatives that many of us don't believe in their version of the world. And

RollCast said...


I never said patronage was a purely Democratic affliction. It is the political crack of far too many Republicans, too. I just said to see what the value of the Dems' principles are by taking the "bacon" from the table. You may be correct - that this is a matter of principle for the the Dems. Then again...

Look, this logjam on the judges has gone on for two years. It has a very serious effect on serving justice. The Senate knows the record on these nominees, there is nothing else to be learned. Just do the people's business, please, and vote on their appointments.