The Kagan Hearings

I didn’t say it here at the time, but the minute I read about how Obama’s Supreme Court nominee wrote that the hearings for Supreme Court nominees have a tendency to be completely vacuous, I predicted that she was not going to be any different. I was mostly right. But even though she has been less than informative, what she has revealed is rather shocking. For one thing, she actually said that she did not think that a law telling people what they would have to eat would be unconstitutional. For another, she actually said that her job would be to enforce the law-I wasn’t aware that she belonged to the Andrew Jackson school of thought about the role of the Supreme Court in government*, but I think anyone who knows anything knows that enforcement is the job of the executive branch.

But if history is anything to go by, she will probably still get on the court, and probably get a sizeable number of Republican votes. This is because, with the exception of Obama’s last nominee, Republicans just rubber stamp the President’s appointments to the Court. Moderate Anthony Kennedy, and the former Justices, liberals O’Connor and Stevens, while all nominated by Republicans, had zero votes against them. Ginsburg (Clinton) got a total of three votes against her appointment, Breyer (Clinton), and Souter (Bush 41) both got just nine votes against them, and all three are arch-liberals. The only Conservative Justice that was appointed by a Republican that got an such overwhelming support was Scalia, who got unanimous support as well. But Thomas (Bush 41) the Court’s most conservative member, barely got confirmed, 52-48 (that every single Senator was present for this vote seems to be another oddity, but obviously the push by Democrats to stop his appointment was virtually without precedent, except for their successful Borking of, well, Bork. Roberts (Bush 43) got 22 votes against, and again, every single Senator showed up and voted. Alito (Bush 43) got 42 votes against, and yes, again, every Senator came out in force to make sure this vote was as close as possible. Sotomayor is, like Scalia, an outlier in terms of the level of support she got considering her ideology-while Scalia got incredible support for a conservative Justice, the level of opposition Sotomayor got was unusually high for a liberal, 31 votes against. If nine Republicans could vote for the wise Latina, though, it seems doubtful that every single one of them can be counted on to vote against a woman as radical as Kagan. They should, but they won’t.

Well, there’s a lot of craziness going on out there right now, but I won’t get into that right now. Still, here’s my nomination for craziness of the week, Deem It Passed is back. Oh, and did you know that, when Strom Thrumond died, NYT called him a “foe of integration”, but when Former Imperial Wizard of the KKK, the man who organized the record setting filibuster of the the Civil Rights Act (which was also opposed by Algore Senior) Robert Byrd died, NYT and everyone else in the media talked about the death of the “soul of the Senate”. What is the difference between these two men’s stories? Only that Byrd stayed in the Democrat party. Oh, and the party that Thurmond switched to just voted for a nominee a black man, over his son. Yes, Thurmond’s son just lost a GOP primary, to a black man. No typo, a GOP primary. But Robert Byrd is the “Soul of the Senate”, while being a Republican means you are nonredeemable for your history as a “foe of integration”. Because Republicans are just evil!

Oh yes, and RNC chairman Michael Steele has put his foot in his mouth again, I’m sure you’ve heard. Son of the Original Neo-con (Irving Kristol) Bill Kristol is calling for him to step down, and I’m almost positive that this will, indeed, be his last mistake. Sad story, but you can’t say something that stupid and expect people to forget about it.

*Sorry, forgot the part where I was supposed to explain this statement.

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