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UPDATED SUNDAY, 28 JANUARY 2006. Updates at bottom of article. From p.13,434 of the Liberal Leftist Standard Operating Procedures and Dogma Manual: "The proper place for your foot is squarely in the center of your mouth." Well, well well... John Kerry, the erstwhile war criminal from Massachusetts, the acclaimed most liberal humanoid in the Senate, has followed the principle. He has just called for the Senate to filibuster Sam Alitoís nomination. Never mind that several Democrats, even Robert "Grand Kleagle of the Ku Klux Klan" Byrd, have decided to vote in favor of Alitoís nomination. Others who have not announced outright for Alito have loudly decried the notion of a filibuster, starting with Sen. Landrieu of Louisana. On second thought, do mind that! It is likely that a filibuster was unthinkable when there were not enough cloture votes to silence it rapidly, now there are more than 60 votes for cloture.
Sen. Kerry apparently thinks that this tactic will work well to gel the liberal base and drive up the leftist vote. I think that he is playing with fire -- or should I say, Nuclear fallout. Kerry is out of the blast zone in Switzerland, and he has Teddy Kennedy running the filibuster game for him in DC. Big mistake. Kennedy is just influential enough to get the filibuster together.
"So, do you see Sen. Frist and the GOP caucus in their offices, cowering in terror over this filibuster? I hope not. Personally, I envision Frist, Tom Coburn, Liddy Dole and many other GOP senators lining up in the halls to do the limbo dance!"
So, do you see Sen. Frist and the GOP caucus in their offices, cowering in terror over this filibuster? I hope not. Personally, I envision Frist, Tom Coburn, Liddy Dole and many other GOP senators lining up in the halls to do the limbo dance! For every watt of energy that this filibuster will put into the Left, it will put a megawatt into the right! There are three scenarios that could arise: (1) Filibuster happens, filibuster whacked by cloture, Alito confirmed; (2) Filibuster happens, First invokes Nuclear Option and Alito confirmed; and (3) Filibuster falls apart, Alito confirmed. What wonít happen: Filibuster succeeds.
The likelihood is option (1). The "gang of 14" has its principal Democrat member openly supporting Alito, and in his support speech, stomping on his own caucus for their shameful conduct in those hearings. The gang of 14 may stick together to force the result into cloture instead of the Nuclear option. Personally, I would love to see the option detonated now. It would thrill and motivate and supercharge the conservative base in the outset of an election year. At the same time, the nuclear option, as opposed to merely losing a filibuster, portends to deflate the Left. As of now, the Left has descended into the death throes of a losing political movement: infighting and extremism. Imagine their despair at the thought of unblockable conservative nominees when the Supreme Courtís two most liberal members are elderly and/or infirm.
The likelihood is high that Justices Ginsburg and Stevens will both retire, or -- God forbid -- die, before President Bush finishes his term of office on January 20, 2009. The Nuclear option will leave the Left with nothing to do but whine as our President picks people who regard the Constitution as more than a blob of clay to be molded to their whim; he will choose people who love and revere our supreme law. This spectre will likely terrify the Democrats in the Senate to either allow the symbolic filibuster and then cloture it, or to thwart the filibuster altogether.
"The wild cards are Teddy Kennedy and the Democratic base. Kennedy is one of the most senior members of the Senate. He has enough chips to call in to make a filibuster happen. He also has a streak of ego that could lead him into the typical liberal trap of overconfidence."
The wild cards are Teddy Kennedy and the Democratic base. Kennedy is one of the most senior members of the Senate. He has enough chips to call in to make a filibuster happen. He also has a streak of ego that could lead him into the typical liberal trap of overconfidence. If he pushes this filibuster as more than a symbolic action, he could succeed. And the faction that would help him to do so is the Democratic base. They grow more and more extreme by the millisecond. When they start a sponsor boycott of Chris "I hate America and George Bush more than words can express" Matthews and say that Katie "Mao Tse-Tung is my dreamy hunky super fantasy date" Couric has a right wing bias, the base is more out of touch with reality than we could have imagined.
So the Democrats are likely to use p.13,434 of the Liberal Leftist Standard Operating Procedures and Dogma Manual. As soon as someone stands for a filibuster, weíll know whatíll happen. If the filibuster is to be quashed, there will be a cloture vote almost instantly and at least 60 Senators will vote yes. If 59 or fewer senators will vote for cloture, Vice President Cheney will take the Senate podeum, and the Nuclear option will be fired off.
I want that Nuclear option to be fired off. The filibuster is a means to impose minority rule, not to protect minority rights. However, I believe that the filibuster will either fizzle before it can be started or it will be clotured away. Itís one thing to stick your foot in your mouth. Itís another thing to stick your head into the barrel of a battleship cannon and yell "Fire!" The Robert Byrds and Mary Landrieus of the Senate will likely work to stop John Kerryís destructive pander to the leftist base.
Oh. and by the way, this announcement is the beginning of John Kerryís 2008 presidential
UPDATES and thoughts as of 10:33AM CST on Jan. 27:
Harry Reid is saying that the votes to uphold a filibuster arenít there, but he will vote to uphold it for symbolic reasons.
The Cloture vote is set for Monday at 4:30PM Eastern Time. I like it when Frist moves fast!
You know that this is going to make Rushís day!
MORE UPDATES as of 10:45PM on January 28:
Hillary Clinton has decided to try to shore up her left flank by supporting the filibuster. I am now wondering if this will be a symbolic protest that is whacked by cloture, or if this will be the proverbial finger on Senator Fristís Nuclear Option Red Button. Pat Buchanan, someone who I find too acerbic for my personal tastes, gave a hearty "bring it on" for a filibuster. He rightly reasoned that a filibuster would lead to the Nuclear Option. The New York Times followed with its whiny editorial, and here we sit, our dreams about to be fulfilled by the Democrats knowingly overplaying their hand!
What could the Left be thinking. Did John Kerry think that this filibuster might actually get 41 or more votes, leaving Frist ready and willing to play his Nuclear hand? Do they think that Frist would be the weakest Republican in the 2008 presidential campaign and decide to help him get to the front of the pack? I said above that Kennedy had the mojo to help John Kerry make the filibuster happen. What he doesnít have is the mojo to flip six Republicans against the Nuclear option.
This "symbolic effort" may just turn Nuclear after all. Ever think of this scenario? Filibuster. Frist calls for cloture. Enough Republicans vote NO to cloture to get it to 41! Cheney strolls in, Nuclear option fired off for all Presidential appointments. Alito confirmed, followed by a long string of tied-up appellate judges, one after the other. In the end the filibuster backfires horribly, deflating the Democrat/Socialist/Ultraleft base and simultaneously energizing ours to an unimagined zenith. Nothing would be more wonderful to me!
More Updates as of 8:10PM on January 29:
Joe Biden will symbolically support the filibuster. Dianne Feinstein has done a 180 and is now on the filibuster faction.
Barack Obama strongly critices Alito and also the filibuster. He says that the Left needs to convince people that their values are at stake. What the good senator fails to realize is that they know this and that is why his party is in the minority, and shrinking. Obama broke with Illinoisí senior senator, and the Senateís #2 Demoleftist, Dickie "our soldiers are like Nazis and Pol Potís thugs" Durbin., who is a principal organizer of the filibuster.
Prediction: Filibuster fails 66-34. All GOP plus eleven Dems vote cloture, led by Byrd, Ben Nelson, Mary Landrieu and Joe Lieberman.