Sunday, April 24, 2005

The Nuclear Option?

More proof that the Republicans don't know how to fight.

At the moment the Democrat's strategy of filibustering Bush's judicial nominations in committee became clear, the Republicans should have voted to change the rules on cloture.

They are asking for permission, not forgiveness. The Democrats certainly didn't wait for permission prior to breaking 200 years of tradition.

By waiting and negotiating they have allowed the Democrats and the media to hype any rules change as akin to burning the Constitution. Had they simply taken care of business that first week, this episode would have been well off the front pages by now. Changing the rules of the Senate would have been perceived as proportional to the unprecedented maneuvers of the Democrats - plus they would have confirmed Bush's judges.

Instead the Dems and the media have been given the opportunity to paint the majority party, the Republicans as undemocratic, instead of the obstructionist minority Democrats.

Consider the possible sequence today: First, Democrats obstruct Federal judges for the first time in this country's history. The Republicans respond by legally changing the rules. The Democrats respond by shutting down the Senate. And the Republicans get tagged with enacting "The Nuclear Option"?!?!?

Does anybody believe that a party that is willing to break 200 plus years of tradition in the Senate's duty to "advice and consent" would even hesitate to merely change the Senate rules were the situation in reverse and they were the majority?

Republicans not only don't know how to fight, most are not even aware they are in one.


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