Thursday, November 04, 2004

Arlen Specter, Jackassertarian

Sen. Arlen Specter has come out with words of warning for the President.
He also bemoans the lack of "giants" on the current Supreme Court.

A Democrat friend of mine says this arrogance and intransigence by Senators like Specter, Chafee and Jeffords marks them as neither Republicans or Democrats, but "Jackassertarians".

If the new head of the Senate Judiciary Committee continues to let Ted Kennedy pick our judges, there's a good case that Bill Frist is a bigger failure than Tom Daschle.

This is the big flaw in Hugh Hewitt's sunny partisanship. The party is not a professional organization for career politicians. It is a collection of like-minded citizens for the pursuit of certain policy decisions.

The fact that Bush's nominees were successfully filibustered is entirely the fault of Senate Republicans. They could have overturned the practice in a single afternoon, by asking the clerk of the Senate to rule on the constitutionality of the practice, and using their simple majority to either affirm his negative opinion or overturn his positive opinion.

The fact that this simple, direct and wholly licit practice is called the "nuclear option" by Republican Senators indicates they don't belong in federal politics.

I'm not a partisan. I'm an ideologue. I don't care how many seats Republicans win, if policy doesn't change, we've failed. And consistent failure in politics is basically a personnel problem.

If the filibusters continue--or worse, if Specter refuses to hold hearings and the rules aren't rewritten to reassign him to a Joint Committee of Metric Conversion--then we need to consider LOSING the Senate, giving Kennedy direct control of what he already controls through the cruise-director mentality ("We're here to have a good time!") of the GOP Senate leadership, and purging the party of Jackassertarians for another generation.

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