No, the title isn’t my idea. I stole it from another blog listed on The Corner.
Transcript of the President’s and Alito’s Remarks
This is quite possibly the best thing possible when it comes to judges. It forces Democrats into defending an untenable position with a split down those who have to vote on the issue. The position is untenable because it is unprecedented in American history – Supreme Court justices do not get filibustered. Further, the Democrats are split because of the 2006 elections. The 7 Democrats of the Gang of 14 come from various states:
- Joseph I. Lieberman, Connecticut, running in 2006
- Robert C. Byrd, West Virginia, running in 2006
- E. Benjamin Nelson, Nebraska, running in 2006
- Mary Landrieu, Louisiana, running in 2008
- Daniel Inouye, Hawaii, running in 2010
- Mark Pryor, Arkansas, running in 2008
- Ken Salazar, Colorado, running in 2010
As you can see, I’ve colored them according to their home state’s vote in the 2004 election – 5 red state senators, 2 blue state senators. We have two senators who have strong inclinations to vote for Alito, as they will go back next year to voters who sent the President back in order to get judges like Alito on the bench. They will have a tough time justifying their opposition. Further, Salazar is in a tight spot, since the Judicial issue was a big one in his election campaign last year.
Lets look at the Republicans of the Gang of 14:
- John S. McCain III, Arizona, who can’t win the Republican Presidential nomination without supporting Alito
- Lindsey O. Graham, South Carolina, in favor of Alito
- John Warner, Virginia, election in 2008
- Olympia Snowe, Maine, election in 2006
- Susan M. Collins, Maine, election in 2008
- R. Michael DeWine, Ohio, who announced on Hugh Hewitt’s show that this isn’t a filibuster situation
- Lincoln Chafee, Rhode Island, election in 2006
I don’t see how the Democrats can obstruct Alito successfully. They have to pull 5 of their half of the gang in line, and at least two of them have a very strong incentive (their reelection next year) to vote for the nominee. Two more have 2008 in mind, and the more rabid the left wing of their left-wing party gets, the more attractive the center will look.
My early guess is that Samuel Alito will get nominated. Here’s to hoping we can get on to the box-o-docs phase (blogosphere review of his record) soon.