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Thursday, November 16, 2006

The (Slow) People's Court

NotButtmissile harrumphs volubly:

While Dick Durbin, one of the nastiest partisans in the Senate, calls for bipartisanship (see John's post below), his partner in obstruction, Chuck Schumer, pretends to be offended that President Bush has re-submitted six judicial nominees who were returned to the President at the beginning of the pre-election recess. A "slap-in-the-face," Schumer calls it.

But Ed Whelan reminds us of the real story here:

Senate Democrats took the extraordinary step, before the summer recess and again before the pre-election recess, of returning these nominations to the White House. Not once, I am informed, did Senate Republicans ever deny President Clinton the courtesy of holding nominations over during an intrasession recess (or even an intersession recess within a Congress). President Bush’s action merely restores, as much as possible, the status quo that should be in effect. (In fact, some nominees who were already on the Senate floor now will have to go through committee referral again.)

As Ed concludes, "If Democrats were really serious about being cooperative, they would stop playing these silly games—and stop falsely accusing the President of the very sort of conduct they’re engaged in."


Boo hoo. Twist in the wind, chumps. After six years of this "Pow! How do you like me now?" bullshit from them, suddenly payback doesn't feel so good.

Here's the actual story:

White House officials said Wednesday that President Bush would renominate six of his earlier choices to sit on the federal appeals court, leaving Democratic senators and other analysts to ponder what message he is sending.

At least four of the nominations have been declared dead on arrival in the Senate by Democrats who have consistently opposed them as unacceptable. All six nominations will remain before the Senate through the lame-duck session of Congress and then will expire.

When the 110th Congress is seated in January, Mr. Bush can deliver another list of judicial nominees to the Senate, which will by then have a Democratic majority.

....

The four nominees whose chances of confirmation are viewed as nearly impossible are: William J. Haynes II, the Pentagon’s general counsel who was involved in setting many of the interrogation policies for detainees; William G. Myers III, a longtime lobbyist for the mining and ranching industries and a critic of environmental regulations; Terrence W. Boyle, a district court judge in North Carolina; and Michael B. Wallace of Mississippi, a lawyer rated unqualified for the court by the American Bar Association.


It's the Gitmo Judiciary Committee vetting process -- the White House, now realizing its earlier fuck-you choices are no longer tenable, want another crack at the game, and the Democrats are sensibly force-feeding them their earlier choices, and making them look like the douchebags that they are in the process. Again, this is what six years of confrontational theatrics and hysterical kabuki get you when the pendulum heads the other way, as it inevitably does.

Strapped to the table, tubes jammed up their noses, steeling themselves for what's to come. Hey, I thought you guys were down with the torture -- or was that just for everyone else?

In the meantime, spare us all the whinging hypocrisy -- if Bush wanted to put Judge Judy on the Ninth Circuit, these assholes would surely find a way to trump such a decision from the highest virtual towers as proof positive of Bush's vaunted gut wisdom.

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