Carol Platt Liebau: Democrats, Reid It and Weep!

Friday, April 29, 2005

Democrats, Reid It and Weep!

Harry Reid is no Bill Clinton. Neither have much substance -- but Reid doesn't even have good political form. Take this -- he states flatly that it would take a "miracle" for Democrats to win back the U.S. Senate. Riddle me this, Batman: Why would any political leader want to dishearten his base?

But Reid's newest blunder is in keeping with his recent declaration that Bill Frist's offer to compromise on the filibuster is just a "big wet kiss" to the religious right. Regular readers know that I'm not a big fan of the usual Republican compromise, which too often involves giving the Dems 99% and declaring victory over the 1% left.

But Frist's newest offer, summarily dismissed by Reid, has a number of advantages. First, it reveals the Democratic intransigence on the filibuster issue. They won't even negotiate. Second, by offering 100 hours of debate on the filibuster, it smokes Democrats out. They don't want to protect minority rights to have their say -- they want to exercise an unprecedented minority veto over judicial appointments. Third, it reveals that the problem isn't -- as Ralph Neas and Nan Aron would argue, with the competence or temperament of some judges . . . it's all about ideology. How do we know? Becaues Frist offered to keep the filibuster for district court judges, who generally don't have the power to shape law in the fashion that appeals courts can.

No go, said political genius Reid.


Blogger wile e coyote said...

When (shudder) President Hillary Clinton nominates Lawrence Tribe as Chief Justice and Kathleen Sullivan as Associate Justice, are Republicans going to be happy that they removed the filibuster if the Senate is controlled by Democrats?

The fact is the federal government has inserted itself into our lives to an extent the founders never dreamed. The political process has to recognize the increased importance and political ramifications of judicial appointments.

Senate filibuster rules have a moderating influence. Much as I would like to see more Robert Borks on the federal bench, I will give it up to keep off the Tribes and Sullivans.

By the way, where are the old-style, small government Republicans, who should like to see terms limits for federal judges, who can get a little senile or a little dictatorial after 15+ years on the bench?

5:34 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home