Monday, October 31, 2005

It's Alito


The Washington Post reports.

In nominating Alito, Bush balanced two different goals: making his conservative base happy and not angering moderate Republicans too much, thus keeping his 55 votes in the Senate together and making it more difficult for Democrats to make a credible threat to filibuster.

No doubt many Democrats will oppose this nomination, because Alito appears to be a critic of Roe v. Wade. At the same time, Alito has excellent credentials. And, unlike Harriet Miers he is also not a crony of Bush. Unless the hearings uncover a significant scandal, or demonstrate Alito's positions are far more extreme than the available information indicates, the record of past Senate votes suggest that he has a good chance of being confirmed.

Unlike Miers, Alito is not a stealth nominee. He has been on the bench for many years. He is a known commodity with good credentials and considerable experience. He has not been as high profile or controversial as someone like Michael Luttig (who would more likely have produced a filibuster) but he is generally thought to be solid and reliably conservative.

Such a pick, if successful, will do much to reconcile movement conservatives to President Bush. That, of course, is precisely what Bush had in mind. He wanted a nominee who would get movement conservatives back on his side and who he could get through the Senate. No doubt Alito will produce a fight over ideology and constitutional interpretation, but it is a fight that Bush calculates he can win. Having such a fight, and winning it, gives him the best of both worlds: a successful nomination of a conservative to the Supreme Court and an opportunity for movement conservatives to make their case about what the Constitution should mean.


Toon of the day:Scalito & Spectral Evidence

While it's clear this choice will curry favor among hard-right conservatives, what about the other 60%+ of the country?

"and an opportunity for movement conservatives to make their case about what the Constitution should mean."

Strictly speaking, to make the case that the courts should be enforcing what it DOES mean, whether anybody thinks it should mean it or not.

You're not arguing about what the Constitution should mean, unless you're discussing amending it.

let alone a gaggle of hunch-backed neo-Nazis from the Federalist society

Come on, Pooka. Give me some more of that highly educated, refined, sophisticated left liberal discourse. Gosh, my federalist society neo-nazi hunchback just gets all tingly when you talk that way.

Scratch a leftist, find a Stalinist.

Cause I feel like I'm the worst,
so I always act like I'm the best.
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