Specter Will Vote For Alito

Senate Judiciary Chair Arlen Specter has announced he will vote to confirm Judge Sam Alito to the Supreme Court. The vote could come as early as Tuesday.

Democrats sound increasingly pessimistic about stopping Bush's drive to pack the court with conservative ideologues.

"To stop a president on judicial nominations, you either need a Democratic president, a Democratic Senate or moderate Republicans who will break ranks when it's a conservative nominee," Mr. Schumer said. "We don't have any of those three. The only tool we have is the filibuster, which is a very difficult tool to use, and with only 45 Democrats, it's harder than it was last term."

He's right. That's why we must begin focusing now on the 2006 elections and 2008.

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    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#1)
    by ras on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 11:13:37 AM EST
    If the Dems truly believe their own rhetoric about Alito, it is their moral imperative to do whatever they can, as much as they can, to prevent his confirmation. Ditto for their base. The R base had no trouble getting what they wanted - replacing Miers with Alito - and so, too, the D base can force a fb if they really want it. But again, they have to truly believe their own rhetoric, first. If they don't, then they never believed. All the attacks and trumped-up soundbites were never more than political jealousy and oppo for its own sake, and they really are just empty posers. If they do, then their concerns and commitment were, and are, real. We'll soon know which.

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#2)
    by Dadler on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 11:41:40 AM EST
    ras, or they have forced themselves into making a strategic decision to retreat. or they don't have the votes in the first place. or they, like the party in power, have zero political imagination. all three and more.

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#3)
    by ras on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 11:56:08 AM EST
    Dadler, A fb takes 40 votes. D's start with 45 and have never had a previous judicial fb defeated. Never. That's no guarantee the R's won't nuke the rules, as is their right, but it'd be a first if they did. If the D's truly believed Alito to be the devil that they say he is, they'd do all they could to prevent his confirmation, rather than just yelp from a safe distance. It's pretty clear that if they can't even be bothered to try, then they never really believed their own args in ths first place, nor did their base. I can respect a differing opinion when it is accompanied by sincerity and commitment, but I can't stand phoney posing. We'll see which is at work here soon enough. Excuses are for weaklings.

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#4)
    by glanton on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 12:03:15 PM EST
    ras: You're like a dog with a bone on this, aren't you? And you really think you have a point, don't you? What you consistently overlook, though, is that the Dmeocrats know that if they fillibuster any given Bush nominee, they're just going to get another Bush nominee. Yes, Alito is terrible; he will add yet another anti-liberty presence in an already stacked court. But were he defeated another clone would be put in there. They simply can't fillibuster everyone and Bush isn't going to relent on his radical social agenda. SO there you have it. But still, ras, your recent behavior on this site illustrates an important aesthetic point about politics today, in general: it's kinda cute, really, to see this constant spewage of recycled Talking Points passed off by the spewers as analytic thought. Don't think for a second that at least tne of the regulars on this site couldn't link to Righty sites at will, right underneath your posts, to show the lemming-like nature of what you're doing. Stop embarrassing yourself. Think instead.

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#5)
    by ras on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 12:11:19 PM EST
    Glanton, Run away from the conclusions if they bother you. If Dems believe their own words, they'll fight with tooth and claw cuz of what's at stake. If they don't, they won't. Why are you so upset, anyway? We don't know yet what they're gonna do, and you do believe that the Dem base believes, right? Why are you instinctively assuming the worst about Dems?

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#6)
    by Dadler on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 12:36:44 PM EST
    ras, luckily for them they don't have to worry about getting your vote. the dems made some noise, that looks to be about all it amounted to. dissapointing, but by no means surprising or unique to either party. like i said, ultimately the same lack of imagination plaguing both sides. one-timer! how 'bout those l.a. kings?

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#7)
    by glanton on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 12:39:02 PM EST
    ras, Not quite sure what you're asking me. But what I am trying to suggest to you (if you would only stop for a second and give something other than regularly scheduled programming a chance), is the idea that the Dems are doing everything that they can realistically do. They have made Alito's hostility to civil rights a very public issue, and by extension, they have drawn as much publicity as possible to Bush's hostility to civil rights as well. Now, if the public wants to ignore it and focus instead on a woman crying or another Missing Whtie Female or the war on Valentine's Day, then there's nothing really that any politican can do about that but say, such id the nature of the American media, such is the nature of the American soul. Again. A fillibuster would accomplish nothing. Even if it bounced Alito, another Alito would spring magically into his place. And on and on it would go, by necessity. Now, realistically, there's no way the Dems could sustain such a thing for three years. Therefore the way they are going about things is about the best they can do. Now, if you have a response that isn't thoroughly canned, I'd love to hear it.

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#8)
    by glanton on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 12:44:23 PM EST
    Oops. Meant to link this, above, for everyone's enjoyment: War on Valentine's Day

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#9)
    by ras on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 01:31:47 PM EST
    Glanton, the Dems are doing everything that they can realistically do FB's were, and are, a realistic tactic, which the Dems themselves previously proved by sustaining them for about three years against JRB & Pryor & Owen &c. Moreover, Bush has shown that when he fears a fb, he will nominate accordingly, as with Miers (who might have made it in spite of conservative oppo had Reid not refused to support his own recoomendation, but that's another story). A successful fb of Alito would indeed get Bush's attention. The real diff here, aot the JRB/Pryor/Owen fb's, is that the public is paying attention cuz it's SCOTUS. This is solidly in the Dems' favor if they have a case. If instead Alito were considered by the Dems as just another ho-hum candidate, one that they don't really prefer but who isn't really all that bad either, then a compliant y/n vote would be appropriate. OTOH, if the Dems really believe him to be as terrible as they say, then they gotta go for it and fb. Win or lose, the stakes are w-a-y too high to fight halfheartedly. A reluctance to fight so important a battle would indicate that they don't really consider it that important after all. Is there a risk they'd lose a fb battle? Sure. But is a mere risk sufficient to back down on an issue they tell us represents the very heart and soul of all they hold dear? Oh my, there be risks under the bed, we'd better not come out! If they don't fb, given their rhetoric, either the Dems and their supporters are world-class wimps, or - more likely, I think - they've never really thought Alito to be all that bad, and their rhetoric all along has just been meaningless scare-tactics and hyperbole. We'll see what they do. Me, I like Alito. I think Bush picked him as a candidate the Dems would actually like enough not to fb, speechifying notwithstanding. And that's the issue here; i.e. whether or not the Dems mean what they've been saying about him. Fighters fight; cowards and phonies run. Dems' subsequent actions will tell us much. Ironically, you seem to be assuming that they will run from the fight and you are rushing to pre-defend them accordingly, and I'm the one giving them the benefit of the doubt for now, till we see what they actually do. Interesting. In any event, we'll know soon enough.

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#10)
    by squeaky on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 01:42:00 PM EST
    Anita Hill on Harriet Meyers, Alito, and Bush. Sounds like she has got it right. link Was she set-up by Bush?

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#11)
    by glanton on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 01:45:26 PM EST
    Fighters fight; cowards and phonies run.
    (Turn ballcap, adjust crotch, spit into cup and make a really tough face, as if you have just proven something when really all you've done it utter a cliche) Well, now that we've shredded that little piece of false testosterone, let me clear something else up for you: I consider myself to be giving the Dems the benefit of the doubt because, as I have said many times on TL, I am against fillibustering Bush's judges, I see it as a rather stupid waste of energy, sort of akin to watching a Kansas City Chiefs game. I am against it because it is pointless, he just keeps coming back with more of the same. What I am for is as much publicity as possible. And the Dems have done what they can to get that. Under the Bush regime that's all you can really ask-- asking for a civil rights judge from Bush would be like asking the Chiefs for a little defense: NOT GONNA HAPPEN.

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#12)
    by chemoelectric on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 02:08:50 PM EST
    If Alito had said he would overturn Roe v. Wade, the Democrats would certainly have filibustered. Thus the Democrats are making crystal clear that they want Bushists to lie and so spare them the bother. They are co-dependents of the 'Republicans' (Bushists). The Democratic Party should have become the sort of party that leads protests and strikes, even as the Bushists did become that sort of party (witness Florida 2000). Looking forward to the 2006 election, I see a nuclear attack on Iran followed by or shortly preceded by questionable Bushist 'victories' in both houses. Iran isn't trying to make nuclear weapons just because it seems a cool idea, you know. It's a race against the clock. If we get anything better than the above, I'll count it as a blessing.

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#13)
    by Talkleft Visitor on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 02:15:37 PM EST
    I also blogged about that bastard Spector here: SteveAudio.blogspot.com. Nice to see another Repub standing on principles, like they always do.

    Re: Specter Will Vote For Alito (none / 0) (#14)
    by yudel on Sat Jan 14, 2006 at 05:55:21 PM EST
    Sorry, Chuck; if you don't want to do "hard" stuff, then you should find someone who does. Waiting unti '06 is a great plan... if you keep Alito fillibustered until then. What will it take the Democrats to understand that the unpopularity of Bush is a *present* asset, but that the Republicans have plenty of means -- control of the media, the government, the military, the voting machines and a blatant disdain for the law -- to tilt the playing field back again? The filibuster is the only power the Democrats have in Washington; it's time to use it or lose it.