Monday, May 23, 2005

Screw Em

Not that any tears will be shed over this, but running this blog isn't worth it any more. If 55 seats don't constitute a majority, nothing does. Senators Graham and DeWine in particular stabbed conservatives in the back. The WH and Majority Leader showed no backbone. In addition, every senator who helped Arlen Specter show that someone with an "R" next to his name can get away with anything shares the blame for this. With the WH, a 10 seat Senate "majority", and a House majority, Republicans have failed to govern. There is no difference between the two parties. "Extraordinary circumstances" roughly translates to "Supreme Court nomination".

Make no mistake: This was capitulation, not compromise. Republicans deserve to lose every election from now to kingdom come.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Lindsey Graham: Traitor?

Sen. Lindsey Graham is now at the center of negotiations to avoid a confrontation on the constitutional option. Once again, any compromise that would maintain the filibusters in any way, shape or form for judicial confirmation is unacceptable. Graham is from the deep red state of South Carolina and has no excuse whatsoever for even posturing. He should be leading the charge to do away with this unconstitutional tool of anti-religious bigotry.

The stakes of this battle could not be higher with a Supreme Court nomination likely just weeks away. Any nominee that is acceptable to conservatives must be able to get through the Senate with 51 votes. Democrats will hold nominees to the Carhart test, making the case that any judge who isn't a left wing extremist is not acceptable. If the Constitution means anything to the high Court in the future, we must restore the Constitutional standard of majority approval.

In addition to the obvious implications for the Supreme Court, make no mistake that this vote will determine who is really in the majority. Any Republican who votes against the Constitutional option should be considered a traitor, and defeating them in primaries should become the number one priority of conservatives. Lindsey Graham, should he defect, will be at the top of that list.

Contact Senator Graham over the weekend and tell him that the Constitution, the Supreme Court, our Senate majority, AND HIS CAREER are at stake here.

Wondering how much his vote matters? Here's the outlook:
55 Republicans
- McCain
- Chafee
- Snowe
- Collins (expected)
- Warner (expected)
50 = zero margin for error.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Avoid the Trap

Sean Rushton is reporting that Sen. Ken Salazar (D-CO) has proposed a "compromise" that would seem at first glance to be a full surrender by the DemocRATS. In fine Clintonesque fashion the alleged deal would allow votes on all of the President's current nominees but maintain the filibuster for "extreme circumstances". This phrase essentially means Supreme Court nominations.

Remember back in November when Sen. Specter issued a statement in which he acknowledged that there was precedent for changing the rules with a majority vote? Well now he rightly claims that he did not endorse the constitutional option. This "deal" is the same thing.

Republicans must not agree to any deal that maintains the filibuster as an option for stopping judicial nominations. Doing so would in fact be a capitulation of mammoth proportions and simply delay a vote on the constitutional option until a SCOTUS nomination. At that point, turncoat Republicans, the same people involved in the current negotiations, would be even less likely to support the constitutional option.

Republicans need to learn that there is one word to remember above all others in governing. Liberty? Constitutionalism? Restraint? No, five. You need five votes to win. Taking Salazar up on his proposal would not help us get to five. In fact, it would be a sure sign that we'd drop to two instead of maintaining three conservatives on the high Court by ensuring that any opponent of Stenburg, anyone who doesn't find a right to gay marriage, and anyone who actually thinks that the Constitution restrains any branch of government will not become a Supreme Court Justice.


It's time to bust the busters and pave the way for a 51 vote threshold for all future SCOTUS nominees, just like the Constitution requires.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Let's Get It On

Tomorrow, Senate Majority "Leader" (TBD) Bill Frist will bring to the floor Judge Priscilla Owen, the first of those who were filibustered during the last Congress. Others have stated on various websites the importance of this issue. (My favorite:

To Recap:
For the first time in history during President George W. Bush's first term, the Democrats used the filibuster to obstruct a President's judicial nominee.

They did this with not one judge, but ten.

These filibusters are unconstitutional, as they prevent the Senate from giving their advice and consent on the nominees.

Republicans have a solution available in the constitutional option, a change in the rules that would conform Senate rules to the Constitution.

Democrats have complained that Republicans are abusing power while engaging in an unconstitutional tactic because they're upset that they've lost five straight elections.

Republicans have wavered on changing the interpretation of the rules, but most have come home and will support the change.

Democrats are universally against a rule change.

Some Senators, notably McCain, Nelson (NE) and Pryor, are attempting to have it both ways without restoring the Constitution.

Where things stand:
51 votes, including the President of the Senate, are needed to conform Senate rules to the Constitution.

44 Democrats plus Jeffords, McCain, Snowe, and Chafee oppose the change.

At least 47 Republicans support the change.

Sen. Collins is thought to have made up her mind and to have decided against the change, but this is not certain.

Senators Murkowski, Warner, Hagel, and Specter are expected to decide the vote.

What to do:
If you have not already done so, contact your Senators and demand an up or down vote on ALL of the President's judicial nominees. Make it clear that any compromise that does not guarantee an up or down vote on every nominee or leaves open the possibility of filibustering judicial nominees in the future is not acceptable.