Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Leahy to support Roberts

I can’t help but see this as the opening move in the battle over the next nomination, something that becomes even clearer when you consider Leahy’s speech, which lays down a number of markers regarding this and future nominations.

Interestingly, the Times headline writers can’t bring themselves to announce the news, nor can the editors bring themselves to run the whole AP story.

Ken Masugi links to the NYT piece that gets matters right.

Update #2 This NYT piece examines the political maneuvering in the Democratic Party. This WaPo article brings us up to date on what the Bush Administration seems to be thinking, which makes it hard to imagine Leahy supporting the next nominee.

Discussions - 5 Comments

I just wish these lefty Senators would read, and understand, Federalist #76. It’s quite obvious Leahy’s support does not come due to his understanding of his proper role in the SCOTUS confirmation process, but rather as an act of political posturing to set up his attack on the next nominee.

How far we have fallen from leaders like Hamilton and Madison to lobbyist-ruled hacks like Harry Reid.

"The nominee took a narrow judicial ethics rule correctly limiting what a judge or judicial nominee should say about a particular case and turned it into a broad excuse from comments on any issue that might ever arise in a case."

So says Leahy on Roberts. Of course, other judges have taken narrow legal rules and turned them into broad excuses for things. In other times and places, they’re called "penumbras."

It comes down to this: The Democrats deny the right of any Republican president to alter the makeup of the Court in any significant way. Republicans, of course, stood still for this when Clinton appointed Justice White’s replacement, moving the Court to the left.

Bush needs to stand and fight on this one, daily, before he even makes his nomination, and daily, until that person, or the eventual O’Connor replacement, is confirmed.

If it’s true that white males are effectively excluded from consideration for this, it’s unfortunate, because it suggests that the president to some extent is playing the liberals’ game.

Leahy’s support for Roberts simply indicates that the Democrats want to be able to say that some of them found Roberts acceptable, when they say that
virtually all of them find O’Connor’s replacement unacceptable.

The Dems need enough votes against Roberts to condition the public to expect something bad from Bush the next time, and to the legitimacy of opposing a SCOTUS nominee on ideological grounds. They also need enough votes for Roberts to be able to
mislead the credulous into thinking that they’re fundamentally reasonable folks.

This suggests 20-35 votes against Roberts, accomplishing both goals.

I agree, that is what they are doing. That’s why I think it is probably important for Bush to nominate a female...even in the Democrats’ state of depravity, they will find it harder to smear and belittle a woman (although they will certainly try).

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