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    Monday, January 30, 2006

    Senators Biden and Obama on the Filibuster

    From the Chicago Tribune:

    Sen. Barack Obama said he would vote Monday to filibuster Judge Samuel Alito's confirmation to the Supreme Court, but he conceded the effort would be futile and criticized Democrats for failing to persuade Americans to take notice of the court's changing ideological face.

    "The Democrats have to do a much better job in making their case on these issues," Obama (D-Ill.) said Sunday on ABC News' "This Week." "These last-minute efforts--using procedural maneuvers inside the Beltway--I think has been the wrong way of going about it."

    I'm a little confused because I thought Sen. Obama was himself one of these Democrats of which he is so critical. Here's to third party Senators!

    Obama criticized the merits of a filibuster. The senator has worked to avoid being portrayed as walking in lock step with Democratic partisans, but at the same time he is seeking to be responsive to a core constituency.

    "We need to recognize, because Judge Alito will be confirmed, that, if we're going to oppose a nominee that we've got to persuade the American people that, in fact, their values are at stake," Obama said. "And frankly, I'm not sure that we've successfully done that."

    Kerry, who worked through the weekend to get other Democratic senators to join the filibuster effort, welcomed Obama aboard and praised him for "taking a stand on principle."

    "It's not easy, but it's important for our country," Kerry said in a statement. ...

    Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has argued against a filibuster. Other Democrats said the effort could allow Republicans to portray Democrats as obstructionist.

    A filibuster, a procedural move to keep debate alive, could delay a final vote on Alito. If the filibuster attempt fails Monday, a vote on Alito's confirmation is scheduled for Tuesday, hours before President Bush delivers his State of the Union address. At least three Democrats and virtually all Republicans have pledged to support Alito, making his confirmation all but certain.

    Sen. Joseph Biden (D-Del.) said he also would vote to keep debate open Monday, but he questioned the wisdom of a filibuster, predicting it would fail.

    "I think a filibuster makes sense when you have a prospect of actually succeeding," Biden said Sunday on CNN's "Late Edition."

    Biden, Obama, and others seem afraid to be wrong. They want to have it both ways: if the filibuster ends up being the winning-tortoise, they don't want to look like cowards who wouldn't take the political risk and take a "stand on principle", but they also don't want anyone to say, "Did you really think this would work?" It's asinine and selfish and makes me furious. If you're in the camp, you should be fighting for it all the way and, if you're concerned that the American people aren't convinced that Alito's bad news, go about convincing them rather than spending your time on the Sunday morning shows sneering at your own so-called allies. How pathetic and opportunist. That's what makes Democrats look weak.

    I agree with Sen. Obama. The Democrats should have ridden that Concerned Alumni thing into the "race-card" ground. The DNC should have spent a ton of cash (though some are saying that, thanks to good old Dean, they don't have much) showing ads with quotes from the Concerned Alumni's meetings, statements, and mission, and every Democrat should have been reminding us that saying you were proud of belonging to a racist organization is as bad as belonging to one. We should have been doing that before Alito hit the floor to listen to Biden et. al. blah-blah-blah him into safety. That whole, "We're going to be so objective and hear his answers to our questions and then judge," thing was idiotic as hell. When the conservatives didn't want Miers, she didn't make to her hearings- which is what we should have done here.

    Ahem. But we didn't. So Democratic senators: please shut the hell up about what everyone else didn't do (though you critics were oh-so-perfect) and support the filibuster!!!!!!!


    Blogger Constant said...


    THanks for the comments on the filibuster -- I agree! Here's a copy of the proposed agenda for the filibuster. There are many things we can accomplish with a filibuster.

    The RNC is also yanking down the agenda from the web LOL -- there are many questions they cannot answer -- just like with the Patriot Act and WMD.

    Please pass this to your friends and let them know that there is a filibuster plan and an extended debate is the right thing to do.

    Well, good luck -- Monday isn't over! Take care. We'll keep up the fight -- BTW, I'm the author of this quote -- and I have returned!

    3:13 PM  

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