Clowntime on the Horizon?
Senator Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) has been appointed to Arlen Defector's slot as the top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, a position that could allow him to impede confirmation of Obama's nominee to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice Souter. Of course, nobody knows what Sessions intends to do, but when Democrats attempted (and failed) to filibuster the nomination of Justice Alito, Sessions was very vocal in his belief that all judicial nominees deserved an up-or-down vote.
"Since the founding of the Republic, we have understood that there was a two-thirds supermajority for ratification and advice and consent on treaties and a majority vote for judges. That is what we have done. That is what we have always done. But there was a conscious decision on behalf of the leadership, unfortunately, of the Democratic Party in the last Congress to systematically filibuster some of the best nominees ever submitted to the Senate. It has been very painful." **Senate Floor Speech, May 23. 2005
It should be interesting to see if Sessions still believes in the up-or-down vote.
Regarding the fight over the Alito nomination, Arizona Republican Sen. Jon Kyl said the party-line vote was bad not just for the Alito nomination, but for the future. "I fear a very bad precedent is being set today, a precedent that a unanimous minority will oppose a nominee on political grounds, not because the nominee is in any way unqualified," Kyl said. Stay tuned to see if Kyl changes his tune!
Uh, I'm just gonna go find a cash machine.