Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Delay Sotomayor's Hearings?

Senate Republican "leaders" threw a fit over Sen Leahy's plan to start hearings in mid-July, it isn't enough time. It may shorten the interval for fundraising and name calling but the consensus is that Sotomayor will be approved, regardless of Republican opposition. Given that no startlingly bad thing is hidden away somewhere accessible the Republicans face the public with no meaningful ammunition and are jumping up and down screaming "NO" for no identifiable reason.

In the absence of identifiable reasons the public will fill in the blanks starting with the most obvious - she's a Democratic nominee - and move on to the really risky ones - like she's a woman and she's a Latino - in other words she's not an old white man. Her record doesn't back their claims of racism and making up laws - judicial activism is exactly what they do regardless of the negative connotations implied. They're going to come up dry and she's going to a Supreme Court Justice, the question is how to win from there.

If I were a Republican Senate leader I'd push for as quick hearings as would pass muster of due diligence. My reasoning is simple, don't be seen losing and don't be seen losing ugly. The ugly face Republicans have been presenting may play to those who will vote for them anyhow but it is really off-putting to those who make choices. Looking forward is a much better policy than digging your hole deeper. If the Republicans were to go along with this nomination with good grace it becomes less of a loss, less of an example of ineffectualism in the name of partisanship. There are elections in 2010, all House seats and 1/3 of the Senate seats, that ought to have meaning in political calculations. If the goal is to hang onto the now immaterial House seats they have and lose some more Senate seats playing to the base alone is good politics. I predicted awhile back that the course of elections was that the loon faction would be most of what was left in the House - it is. The Senate is narrowing into that same equation and 2010 may well result in an immaterial loon fringe remaining in the Senate - more than a couple of the Senate seats were won on the basis of old and now disreputable politics, things have changed.

There are a lot more voices and ideas in this country than are represented by a base Republican Congress and Democrats. This crap is not good for the country, it is not good for the only opposition to be the voices of crazy. It is, further, bad for the Democratic Party to contain Republicans with a (D) as their sole qualification for their membership - that confuses the snot out of voters and holds the seeds of discord and junk in the Party. I won't play purity police for the Democratic Party, but I'm happy to smack heck out of stupidity. These folks need someplace to go, but it needn't be to the loons.

1 comment:

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