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May 03, 2006


Since this is an open thread, can somebody tell me (or point me to a guide) how to do indented quotes and links for comments on this blog?

it's HTML, so < blockquote > without the spaces for quote and < / blockquote > without the spaces for endquotes, and our friend

< a href=" url "> for a link, ending with < /a> also without any spaces. it will apear as an underlined "for a link, ending with".

In case it's not clear, the conservative base needs ginning up woith those poll numbers. So, let's create a fight over judges (and forget about senate traditions in favor of short term political gain).

Frist is such an ass.

Precisely because he is an incompetent ass, Frist can be counted on to botch the judges fight like he botched $100 gas rebates. He made it seem like Congress could do something, thus arousing expectations, but then proposed something so stupid people immediately saw through it. He will botch the judges too, with Lott chuckling friom the wings.

Kavanaugh nomination to the DC Circuit. Even the maveric centrists group of 14 steered clear of Kavanaugh in their deal to seat Priscilla Owen, Janice Rogers Brown. The DC circuit is at the center of the presidential-executive advocacy of greater authority, which is why the president's proponents want a politico to get the post

Kavanaugh may have pleaded as many as ten court cases, the bare minimum qualification for the interview for the job as judge; but he has not been a judge.
Kavanaugh seems not to have participated in the Brooks Brothers Rebellion in FL during the saga of hanging chads but was in the cadre of lawyers who descended on FL to shut down the FL2000 recount.
Kavanaugh led the charge to get Clinton workproduct documents, but manned the barricades for Bush to keep Congress out of the White House private files.
Leahy's contingent is asking whether Kavanaugh devised the domestic wiretap secrecy firewall.
Some links:
2004 Written by a judiciary watchdog organization.
2004 A newspaper editorial.
March 2006 Respected legal analyst publication online describes in lengthy detail credentials as a politico but not as a judge; traces roots back to TX.

That %$#*&% gang of 14 better not step in and screw this up again.

Did everyone read the quote a few weeks ago -- wish I could remember where I saw it -- from an unnamed Republican, saying they'd really saved Frist's bacon by coming up with the 14 "compromise"? The implication was, no way could Frist have got enough votes to overturn the entire history of the Senate for his judges' crusade; the GOPers among the 14 would have blinked. So, Lieberman and gang sold us out once again.

I can't see how Frist is in a stonger position now, with the president and party seeking new poll lows every week. The marginal Republican candidates will have a hellacious choice between pleasing their insane base and retaining any claim to mainstreamism. It seems the GOP is now so out of options, the only ideas it's getting are of the make-it-worse variety.

demtom, they've got to do something to gin up the base - anything. So they'll go to the GOP playbook and run the same play until it fails.

We in CT are wondering what Lamont's race will do for Joe... he knows we hate his iraq position, but does he want to open a second front over judges?

Excellent point, Dem. The polls may show Lieberman cruising, but the fact he's started advertising so early -- and confronting the sore point of Iraq head on -- tells me he thinks there's a simmering volcano of resentment out there of his whole "I'm the GOP's favorite Dem" persona. He can't afford to pick any unneeded fights between now and (August, is it?). It'll kill him, because he loves his beltway reputation, but he almost has to back the filibuster this time; to do otherwise would be kissing Bush again.

my thoughts exactly. So Lamont wins even if he loses.

From Charlie Cook's column yesterday in the Nat Journal:

Studies show that voters in Bush-friendly red states drive significantly more miles each month than those in blue states, and it's a pretty logical assumption that gasoline usage is much greater in the predominately suburban, rural and small town congressional districts most often represented by Republicans, than in more compact, urban districts usually held by Democrats. That means the longer gasoline prices remain high, the worse it will be for GOP candidates.

Will conservative judges put gas in the tank of the SUV?

Damn, let's go. I'm with John Lopresti in his analysis that the gang of 14 better not interfere this time.
Frist has been using the threat of "nuclear option" to lord it over any who dare to challenge the Repubs choices.
I say, Let 'er rip and get this threat on the table, deal with it, and then show Frist just how much power he really does/does not have. Either way, the Dems win imho.

Oops, should have agreed with demtom on the "Gang of 14." New to posting here so please forgive the screw-up.

While the fight over conservative judges does help shore up support among the "right-wing," judicial, conservative base that Republicans need to turn out in droves in November, this is not the most important reason for going forward with these nominations now. The most important reason is to get as many of the "right" judges in place before the November elections. After the November elections (Republicans anticipate losing the House while narrowly retaining the Senate), they know that it will be unlikely that they'll be able to get their more "extreme" judges through the Senate. Now is their best shot given the political landscape. Here's the reasoning from the Republican side of the aisle, the Democrat Leadership in the Senate will be loathe to let a filibuster fight interfere with Schumer's game plan for the November elections. So, now is the best possible time to get as many of the judges through as possible. The Democrat Leadership will blink so as to preserve their "anticipated" electoral success in the November elections. The last thing the Democrat Leadership wants is something that will take the focus off of "winning issues" for them. Only segments of the hard-core bases care about judges. The Democrats won't take a chance of messing up their November chances with a fight over judges. Anyway, that's the Republican reasoning. The by-product of this drive to fill the courts with the "right" judges for the future just happens to pay dividends for the Republicans in terms of their "judicial-right" base.

What will happen? Most likely just what Sen. Harry Reid suggested. A deal whereby some judges get through in exchange for others being left on the sidelines. The last thing Sen. Reid wants at this time is the pressure of the Democrat activist base to defeat the judges with a filibuster. It messes up the November election game plan.

If you all happen to glance here again, I visited Jeralyn, and she has some reasonable commentary about why Boyle is even less appetizing than Kavanaugh. Unlike Kavanaugh, Boyle is a southern judge; Reid had some criticisms concerning his candidacy; here are two helpful links courtesy of Jeralyn; People for the American Way is especially thorough in judiciary nomination research; their dossier published online at the time of the last Supreme Court nomination was a 100 page pdf.
The musings above about politics in CT evoke some interesting views of life in that suburb of NY. Ribicoff was an interesting senator, I thought he represented a trend which temperate liberals in CT might develop.

Regarding the Republican strategem of cowering Democrats to avoid filibuster: The argument presented in the thread, above, by our visitor, uses a sole argument to support opposing propositions. The first suggestion is Democrats better acquiesce because Republicans will brand Democrats as obstructionists.

The contributor proceeds to discuss the judiciary as irrelevant to average voters.

Let me offer the following countervailing links, some of which look a little critically at Democrats, as well.

Byrd opposes busing-based integration of schools, 1979. Note: Byrd is a Democrat from a state with a strong liberal current but Old Dominion-like politics, so in the Carter years he was still spouting Dixiecrat politics; that era concluded for him with most of Dixie migrating to become the heart of the new Republican party.

Byrd maverick supports Frist controversion of parliamentary procedure 51% revision of cloture rule in Senate chamber, vis a vis established self-rule regulation specifying 67%. Letter supporting Byrd.

Political science professor documents history of dozens of judgeship nominations which were blocked during Clinton 8 years.

Cloture history specifics discussed by former White House counsel J.Dean May 6, 2005; and by Senator E.Ted Kennedy May 19, 2005.

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