Losing Arguments

Friday, June 03, 2005

Losing Arguments

Via Tapped I came across this Powerline post on whether or not Republicans filibustered Richard Paez, a Clinton nominee to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals.

I am growing increasingly weary of Democrats who play fast and loose with the term "filibuster" when it comes to judges because it does nothing more than distract from the key point - that point being that Republicans managed to kill 60+ Clinton nominees by refusing to give them hearings or floor votes.

These technical arguments about whether or not a successful cloture vote on some nominee constitutes a "filibuster" are ridiculous. The fact of the matter is that if filibusters of nominees are unconstitutional because every nominee deserves an up-or-down vote, then blue-slipping and refusing to hold hearings are equally unconstitutional.

I just had this discussion over at Southern Appeal last week and even Feddie agreed with me
I agree with Eugene that "[i]f filibusters are unconstitutional, then so is every other technique used to block confirmation."
There is absolutely no substantive difference between refusing to hold a hearing, blue slipping or filibustering a nominee - in all cases, the nominee is denied an up or down vote.

And since "every nominees deserves an up or down vote" is the new GOP mantra, we ought to start attacking them on that and asking why they denied such votes to 60+ Clinton nominees.

Stop trying to defend the filibuster by arguing that the Republicans did it too - they didn't. Instead, start defending the filibuster as inherently identical to blue-slipping and denying a hearing - which it is. Because under that standard, what Republicans did to Clinton is 6 times worse than what Democrats have done to Bush.

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