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October 24, 2005

Up Or Down?

From Schumer on MTP:

George Bush, say whatever else you want about him, does not back away from a fight. I will say this, if he were to withdraw the nomination, it would be a stunning defeat for George Bush, and here's what I think it would show. I think it would show that a small group way over at the extreme had power over the White House. After all, not a single Republican senator has at this point called for Harriet Miers' resignation. And so if President Bush is going to march to the drum of a group that I think most Americans would consider out of the mainstream, it's going to be a real revelation to the American people and that's why I think he can't do it.

In the coming weeks, it's exceedingly likely that Miers' nomination will either fail in the Senate or be withdrawn by the White House. That is not only a show of weakness, but the President caving to extreme elements of his base. As Schumer says, most politicians are withholding judgment on her. In polls, 11% more Americans want Bush to continue supporting his nominee than want him to withdraw. Now, I, a partisan Democrat, want Miers to fail, but I know that mainstream Republicans believe all judicial nominees deserve an up-or-down vote, and would hate to see their deepest wishes and dream destroyed by a couple of conservative extremists.

October 24, 2005 in The Supreme Court | Permalink

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» Senator: Miers Lacks Votes To Win from Unpartisan.com Political News and Blog Aggregator
A Democrat on the Senate committee that will consider Harriet Miers' nomination said that she lacks [Read More]

Tracked on Oct 24, 2005 2:21:51 PM

» Senator: Miers Lacks Votes To Win from Unpartisan.com Political News and Blog Aggregator
A Democrat on the Senate committee that will consider Harriet Miers' nomination said that she lacks [Read More]

Tracked on Oct 24, 2005 2:23:44 PM

Comments

That's all very nice, but it totally begs the question of the most compelling reason this nomination needs to fail: she is grossly, utterly unqualified. Confirming her would set an appalling precedent.

Posted by: Rebecca Allen, RN, PhD | Oct 24, 2005 2:17:23 PM

Actually, I think Schumer is being very smart there. He's goading Bush into a fight with Bush's base. Nice.

Posted by: paperwight | Oct 24, 2005 3:56:08 PM

I think the interesting thing in Schumer's comments is the setup of expectations. If Miers nomination is withdrawn it's not that it shows how mindful Bush is of listening to his base, it's a spectacular failure. That's good. How many times will we see "spectacular failure" attached to Miers name once she's out?

And by the way, yes, I think she's toast, as it should be.

Posted by: weboy | Oct 24, 2005 3:56:15 PM

Since when did expecting Supreme Court Justices to have some grounding in Constitutional law become "extremism"?

Schumer is trying to prepare the battlefield. You may think it to your advantage to play along, but just wait until you have to argue cases before a Justice Miers.

Remember exactly who voted in favor of Kelo v. New London. Our greatest fear is that Ms. Miers is from the same mould.

Posted by: Mastiff | Oct 24, 2005 5:02:38 PM

Suddenly the Republicans are concerned about subject matter expertise, the judicious study of discernable reality, and so forth. That's new.

Also you've got to love the retraction of the chant "Up or Down Vote! Up or Down Vote!" and the abandonment of the imperial "the President can do no wrong because he's a good man" model. Does anyone else remember the graphic with the W casting a cross-shaped shadow?

Endlessly amusing.

Posted by: paperwight | Oct 24, 2005 8:47:41 PM

Up or down vote...as it should be. Let her be confirmed or rejected on her own merits by the Senate. The process is more important than the success or failure of this particular nomination unless, of course, short-tem agenda drives your political decisions.

Posted by: Fred Jones | Oct 25, 2005 11:10:41 AM

The process is more important than the success or failure of this particular nomination unless, of course, short-tem agenda drives your political decisions.

Or unless Orrin Hatch can bury a Democratic President's nominees in committee by simply refusing to schedule hearings on them, or can quietly change the blue-slipping rules in order to prevent Democratic senators from vetoing Bush's nominees as Republican senators did Clinton nominees. In that case, the process is far less important than the success or failure of a particular nomination.

I wonder if the Republicans will still chant "Up or Down Vote! Up or Down Vote!" the next time there's a Democratic President and a Republican Senate. I think not. I certainly don't remember hearing it during Clinton's presidency.

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