Friday, May 05, 2006

Judicial Nominees Rise as an Issue Again

It's entertaining to read David Limbaugh's latest article, in which he argues that the Conservative Base is no longer satisfied with the number of justices President Bush has had confirmed (which is the vast majority). Instead Republicans in Congress need to get busy and confirm two more controversial nominees or else they will abandon the party.

I suspect the point is that the Republicans are happiest when they are sticking it to the Democrats. Confirming more controversial nominees will, in fact, stick it to the Dems. So let's confirm us some more controversial nominees. The fact that one of these judges has been accused of ethical laspses (see this Salon story, for example), and the other was involved in our decisions to torture detainees doesn't matter.

Frankly in Limbaugh's worldview those qualities are positive attributes, because the point isn't to get good men on the bench. The point is to stick it to the Democrats, and those negative qualities are what make sticking it to the Democrats possible. And if Congressional leaders don't stick it to the Democrats (and soon), the base will not be happy about it.
The Republicans' acquiescence to the Democrats' demand for a delay on the hearings on these nominations is just another straw. When will the elephant's back be broken? How long will Republicans continue to allow themselves to be walked on?

. . . Grassroots frustration is growing with a vengeance, and someone in charge better wake up and show some leadership.
Of course this might be a case where what the pundits and the grassroots want is actually bad for the party as a whole. Slamming down the Democrats might make the Republicans look tough, but only if they can convince the American people that they are in the right. And I don't think the Republican Party can count on that just now.

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