Panhandle (W.Va.) Grassroots for Democracy

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Tuesday, July 05, 2005

SCOTUS & ideology

The Republicans were all for consultation when President Clinton was looking for judges to appoint to the Supreme Court. Jesselee of The Stakeholder calls them on it:
Orrin Hatch was on Face the Nation this Sunday and went into full clown show mode. Some excerpts from the transcript...

ROBERTS: One of the big issues that people are considering is this idea of consultation. Back in 1993, President Clinton came to you, Senator Hatch, and he said here's who I'm thinking about, Bruce Babbitt, as a member of the Supreme Court and you said, 'Well, no, why don't you consider Stephen Breyer or Ruth Ginsburg.' One of them he had considered. Ginsburg he hadn't. Not only did he consider them, but he ended up nominating both of them. What degree of consultation do you think President Bush should engage in with the opposition?
Sen. HATCH: Well, I think he'll do at least that. I mean, basically I didn't tell the president what to do and he basically said I'm interested in these people and Bruce Babbitt was at the head. And I just said, 'Well, you know, he may very well make it,' and, you know, I even indicated I would support him because he is president, and then I mentioned these other two at the time and he knew a little bit about Breyer but he didn't know anything about Ruth Bader Ginsburg. But I would think the president is going to do consultation, but let's understand something. The Constitution does not require consultation. It's a courtesy that has only in recent presidencies been extended to any real extent, but the courtesy comes both ways. In other words, senators have to understand that it's the president's right to pick whoever the nominee is and it's our right to advise and consent which means a vote up and down.

I wanted to excerpt the full answer just for the laugh of seeing Hatch's "because he is president" line, but the key quote is "The Constitution does not require consultation." Next:

But let's just be honest about it. We were able to put Thomas out of the committee with a--without recommendation, because we recognized that the president and his nominee deserve a vote up and down. That's what advice and consent means.
Got that? "Advice and consent" means "up or down vote" but it does not mean "consult."

Definition of "Advise":

To take counsel; consult [emphasis added.]

We would like to provide a suitable definition for "consent," but we have yet to find a definition of "consent" that includes the term "up or down vote" - in any dictionary, or even any Constitution for that matter. Perhaps the internets are broken.

Strict Constructionism, anybody?


At Wednesday, July 06, 2005 11:37:00 PM, Blogger ROMA said...

You can not believe for 1 minute that this has anything to do with fairness or an up or down vote.

If the Democrats in the Senate do not fight for at least a moderate conservative nominee then they might as well hand the constitution over to the Republicans and let them tell us what it says, because this country will no longer have a 2 party system or any checks and balances.

The Democrats totally screwed themselves when they gave Bush the blank check to invade Iraq. If half of the Democrats would have opposed us going into Iraq from the get go then we would not be facing a 55 to 45 margin in the Senate or such a large margin in the House and maybe not a Republican White House. Maybe just maybe we would have gotten a better candidate than Kerry to run against Bush.

I still think the entire election hinged on this debate.

During the second debate Kerry was critisizing Bush for going into Iraq and Bush countered with "he looked at the same evidence I did and voted for going into Iraq"

If Kerry would have come back with -Yes Mr. President I looked at your manufactured evidence and assumed it was real, and have regretted that vote ever since we would be talking about President Kerry choosing a nominee right now. But it all boils down to not being ready for the tough questions and being ready to take on the Republicans.

At Thursday, July 07, 2005 11:37:00 AM, Blogger John C. said...

So true Roma, your perception is impecible as always...still haven't written those l.T.E's...summer is so busy lately.


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