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Sat Feb 16, 2013, 08:39 AM

Think Hagelís bad? Just wait until thereís a Supreme Court opening


The Hagel battle is actually a dry run for the next justice fight -- and it's clear that the GOP will filibuster

BY JONATHAN BERNSTEIN


Compare that Russian meteor hit earlier this week to the one that wiped out the dinosaurs. Got that? Now think about the Chuck Hagel filibuster ó and what we can expect if a Supreme Court seat opens up sometime soon.

The Hagel filibuster seems to have fired up interest in Senate procedure, but itís actually a little difficult to figure out what, if anything, is so unprecedented. The one thing thatís clearly new is that itís the first time a cabinet nominee has lost a cloture vote. However, itís certainly not the first time that 60 votes was required for a cabinet post; itís not the first time that a cabinet nomination was delayed by opposition; and if current reports are correct, it wonít be the first time a cabinet nomination has been defeated by a filibuster. It certainly isnít the first time a cloture vote has failed on an executive branch pick, or even a high-profile pick.

Some of this is just partisanship. Republicans are making the absurd claim that a 60-vote requirement isnít a filibuster. Democrats are exaggerating how unprecedented this move is.

Still, the political press, and perhaps even Senate Democrats, seem surprised that Republicans really mean what theyíve been saying ever since Barack Obama was elected about requiring 60 votes to move anything through the Senate. And if there was a Senate norm against filibustering cabinet nominations, Republicans have no intention of honoring it. And that matters because of the other supposed ďtraditionĒ that will be tested the first time thereís a Supreme Court opening: No Court selection has been denied by filibuster.

Now, the first problem with that claim is the case of Abe Fortas in 1968. The Senate took a cloture vote, which failed, and Fortasí name was withdrawn. Senators opposing Fortas, however, claimed that it wasnít really a filibuster ó more or less in exactly the way that Republicans this week denied that the filibuster against Hagel was a ďrealĒ filibuster.

more:
http://www.salon.com/2013/02/16/think_hagels_bad_just_wait_until_theres_a_supreme_court_opening/

31 replies, 3352 views

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Arrow 31 replies Author Time Post
Reply Think Hagelís bad? Just wait until thereís a Supreme Court opening (Original post)
DonViejo Feb 2013 OP
NoMoreWarNow Feb 2013 #1
Demeter Feb 2013 #13
NoMoreWarNow Feb 2013 #21
Demeter Feb 2013 #25
eilen Feb 2013 #2
Bluenorthwest Feb 2013 #3
Proud Liberal Dem Feb 2013 #4
disndat Feb 2013 #7
eilen Feb 2013 #8
Zambero Feb 2013 #17
forestpath Feb 2013 #18
pasto76 Feb 2013 #9
Mira Feb 2013 #11
JDPriestly Feb 2013 #15
NewJeffCT Feb 2013 #26
TwilightGardener Feb 2013 #28
Zambero Feb 2013 #16
DhhD Feb 2013 #5
DhhD Feb 2013 #6
dbackjon Feb 2013 #10
sulphurdunn Feb 2013 #12
OmahaBlueDog Feb 2013 #14
davidpdx Feb 2013 #19
OmahaBlueDog Feb 2013 #22
davidpdx Feb 2013 #24
NewJeffCT Feb 2013 #27
davidpdx Feb 2013 #29
Cosmocat Feb 2013 #20
Drunken Irishman Feb 2013 #23
trueblue2007 Feb 2013 #30
marlakay Feb 2013 #31

Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 08:50 AM

1. Jesus, so freaking depressing

 

something has to break with this system

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Response to NoMoreWarNow (Reply #1)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 10:34 AM

13. the system is already broken...

and there's not a repairman in sight, since Hairy Reed broke, once again.

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Response to Demeter (Reply #13)

Sun Feb 17, 2013, 10:15 AM

21. true-- I just meant that like the government may completely lose the ability to function at all

 

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Response to NoMoreWarNow (Reply #21)

Sun Feb 17, 2013, 08:13 PM

25. When it stops working for the top 10%

then we will see change...but no hope, unless it's the 80% who make the changes.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 08:57 AM

2. I don't really care. Hagel is a republican.

I had a bit of schaden freude watching them tear apart their own, so much I want to laugh at them, particularly their young showboaters. They will turn on themselves to get a headline.

Let Obama choose a Democrat. One that knows how to fight dirty in politics and knows where the bodies are buried and one that doesn't think that republicans are their friends. I almost felt sorry for Hagel. Betrayal has a neutering effect; he hardly knew what hit him. I think all mainstream conservatives should look at that and see what their party is turning into. It will be them next.

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Response to eilen (Reply #2)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 09:32 AM

3. I'm with you on all of that, except I can not feel sorry for Hagel getting served that which he

so happily served to others. He famously attacked other nominees, Democrats of course, including his anti gay diatribe to the press about Hormel in which he said being gay is an inhibiting factor to serving one's country. I do not support homophobes, nor anti choice radicals, nor Republicans. Hagel of course voted for the Iraq War, while his supporters claim he opposed it. Like a few other Republicans, after 5 horrible years he stopped expecting WMD and started whining about the war he gleefully helped to start for no good reason.
I've never supported any Republican and Chuck is nothing but a Republican.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #3)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 09:53 AM

4. The Republicans will pitch a fit over anybody President Obama nominates

It's not about Hagel, it's about Obama IMHO.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #3)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 10:04 AM

7. McCain attacked Hagel

on Hagel's anti-Iraq war position.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #3)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 10:12 AM

8. Abstractly, it had to be a bitter pill-- for anyone, I guess as a human...

and I loved every minute of it.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #3)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 11:58 AM

17. Didn't Hillary and John Kerry initially support the Iraq War?

It takes a certain amount of courage to own up in public to one's past mistakes in judgment. In today's GOP, the pressure to stay in line and not break ranks is intense, and despite his political designation, Hagel should be commended for demanding that his colleagues reverse course in Iraq, and for not resorting to the usual face-saving maneuvers so common in partisan politics.

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Response to Bluenorthwest (Reply #3)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 12:28 PM

18. +1

 

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Response to eilen (Reply #2)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 10:13 AM

9. Hagel is a veteran first. a republican second

Hagel is one of the few republicans -anywhere- to criticize the iraq war and president bush.

Hagel is a combat veteran. Hagel received two purple hearts while squad leader and non commissioned officer during vietnam.

Hagel is NOT a career politician.

these are all the real sticking points with the right. They dont want anybody with sense in the pentagon. That would mess up the whole money works.

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Response to eilen (Reply #2)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 10:28 AM

11. This is a very well worded and spot on take

on their problems and I too share the Schadenfreude in watching them eat their own and realize the danger they all are in.
Obama has inserted a steel rod into his spine when it comes to dealing with those who will not work with him, or at least he is slowly pushing it in.
I am not unhappy that he has these trial runs in standing up for his beliefs and candidates before the time comes to apply the learning in a SCOTUS candidate.

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Response to eilen (Reply #2)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 11:36 AM

15. Preferably someone Jewish so that the Republicans can't play to their

base on the Israel issue.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #15)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:50 PM

26. Like that would stop them?

If Obama put up Chuck Schumer or Russ Feingold for Sec. of State instead of John Kerry, they'd still claim he hated Israel without any shame - since they have no shame.

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Response to NewJeffCT (Reply #26)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:58 PM

28. Chuck Schumer was on the expanded PNAC list--he's all pro-Israel hawk. Hagel had to

kiss his ring and promise Israel some F-35's and keep funding for Iron Dome to get Dem Senate support. They'd love Schumer as SecDef. Feingold, not so much.

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Response to eilen (Reply #2)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 11:47 AM

16. Republicans are hoping to make an example out of Hagel

This is at least partly about Tea Party "solidarity", and never cooperating with Democrats on anything. If you dare break ranks with us you will be ostracized, rejected, your integrity will be impugned, and your career will effectively be over. Regardless of whether you are on the right side of history or not. The party of NO should not be permitted to pull this off.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 09:54 AM

5. I would like to see the President nominate 5 women at the same time. It would keep the

GOP extremely busy making stupid outbursts and then the POTUS could use Executive Order to seat one of the 5 each day (or on a set deadline) on the SCOTUS until Congress approves one of the nominees. Hearing the cases and making a decision, are two different matters. Use the Constitution and Executive Order together. Give the GOP the hard time.

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Response to DhhD (Reply #5)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 09:59 AM

6. The President would have the final say on the nominee.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 10:27 AM

10. Exactly - get a spine, Reid

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 10:29 AM

12. If I understand

how the national legislature works. We have a system comprised of 535 members that concedes a de facto veto of any legislative action that requires senate confirmation or bicameral consent for the passage of laws to 41 senators. If that is a representative government, I'm curious just who it represents.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sat Feb 16, 2013, 10:55 AM

14. ..and it will be exponentially worse if the justice being replaced is Scalia

(or Thomas, Roberts, or Alito -- who are far less likely)

The replacement of Breyer or Bader-Ginsburg, while troublesome, will be looked largely upon as leaving them no worse than they are now.

Not so with Kennedy, and especially not so with Scalia. They will pull out all of the stops. Filibuster and impeachment of the President will be high among them. Should he get one or both of those replaced, the GOP will look to make a campaign issue of it. Either proposing SCOTUS term limits (which I'd actually support), threatening to stack the court (Hey, FDR did), or just threatening that once they got the WH and both houses of congress, they'll start summarily impeaching "activist judges."

The President should stay the course. Keep nominating female justices. Diane Wood is my personal favorite, although she is now on the wrong side of 60. I like her for two reasons. 1) Bill Clinton nominee. 2) NOT an Ivy Leaguer.

Don't nominate Hillary. The Republicans want that. They've hinted she's an acceptable nominee because they want to hold a show trial and deny her the court and the Presidency in one shot.

Ultimately (and it will bite us in the ass someday) we have to do the right thing and end the FIlibuster once and for all.

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Response to OmahaBlueDog (Reply #14)

Sun Feb 17, 2013, 07:17 AM

19. If it is Scalia I'll wet my pants

That would be a good fight. I don't think it should necessarily be a woman, I think he should take a strong look at minorities that are not currently on the court. Obviously a LBGT would be a huge deal whether it be a man or a woman. I agree it shouldn't be a Ivy Leaguer, they need to find someone outside that "beltway" of schools.

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Response to davidpdx (Reply #19)

Sun Feb 17, 2013, 12:26 PM

22. The bottom line is that we need to continue to make the SCOTUS more diverse

I mention nominating a woman again for two reasons. 1) A court with 4-5 female justices will be more reflective of the population as a whole and 2) frankly, it makes it harder for a party dominated by white males to oppose.

I'd love to see someone who has been a long-time public defender, or somene who has been heavily involved in indigent legal aid.

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Response to OmahaBlueDog (Reply #22)

Sun Feb 17, 2013, 06:29 PM

24. Someone with that background would be great

An African-American woman with that kind of experience shouldn't be hard to find. It's going to take quite a long time to change the makeup of the court since they are lifetime appointments.

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Response to davidpdx (Reply #19)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:54 PM

27. Scalia is too partisan to step down with a Democrat in office

The only way he'll be replaced with Obama in charge is if he dies (and, cue the GOP conspiracy theories about Obama plotting his death...).

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Response to NewJeffCT (Reply #27)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:50 PM

29. Yes and that is what I'm counting on

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sun Feb 17, 2013, 08:46 AM

20. It will be scary

There is another level of their jackassedness, and this would send them to it.

They believe they are entitled to anything they think they are entitled to, and they have come to believe they have the right to pack the court however they see fit. Their default manner of controlling the country is the SC, and combined with their deranged hatred of all things BHO, if Scalia or Kennedy's slots opened up, there is no end to what they will do to try to destroy whoever is nominated. He could reanimate Reagen himself, and they would eviscerate him.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Sun Feb 17, 2013, 02:59 PM

23. ESPECIALLY if it's to replace a conservative or the 'swing' Kennedy...

It's going to be a mess.

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:59 PM

30. FILIBUSTER IS BROKE ..... FIX IT NOW

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Response to DonViejo (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 09:52 PM

31. I think any liberal one should retire before Obama

ends because after 8 years other side has a greater chance.

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