Wednesday, April 27, 2005

 

The FDA must ban ViagraTM immediately!

It's destroying men's minds!
By creating a new threshold for the confirmation of judicial nominees, the Democratic minority has abandoned the tradition of mutual self-restraint that has long allowed the Senate to function as an institution.

This tradition has a bipartisan pedigree. When I was the Senate Republican leader, President Bill Clinton nominated two judges to the federal bench - H. Lee Sarokin and Rosemary Barkett - whose records, especially in criminal law, were particularly troubling to me and my Republican colleagues. Despite my misgivings, both received an up-or-down vote on the Senate floor and were confirmed. In fact, joined by 32 other Republicans, I voted to end debate on the nomination of Judge Sarokin. Then, in the very next roll call, I exercised my constitutional duty to offer "advice and consent" by voting against his nomination.

When I was a leader in the Senate, a judicial filibuster was not part of my procedural playbook. Asking a senator to filibuster a judicial nomination was considered an abrogation of some 200 years of Senate tradition.
Or maybe Bob Dole is just a fucking liar.
In fact, while Democratic senators used the filibuster to block 10 of Bush's 229 first-term judicial nominees, the Republican-controlled Senate prevented approximately 60 Clinton nominees from even receiving a hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee, much less a vote on the Senate floor. And while Senate Republicans under Clinton strictly enforced a "blue slip" rule -- which allows one home-state senator to prevent a nomination from moving forward -- they greatly relaxed this rule under Bush to circumvent Democrats' objections to several nominees.
I suppose the difference is the Democrats are using the filibuster. Which is the only tool they happen to have.

But the Republicans don't really care that the Democrats are - gasp! - using a filibuster instead of a committee chairman's powers. And they don't care that they held up 60 of Clinton's nominees compared to the Democrats are holding up only 10 of Bush's. They want absolute uncontested power and they will stop at nothing to achieve that.

And obviously the press and public don't care either.

The fact is, the Republicans don't give a shit what anyone may happen to think (or not). It's good to see the Democrats acting that way, for a change.
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