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Wed Feb 1, 2017, 08:35 PM

Dare we hope? Or will Dems repeat 1/31/2006 refusal to Filibuster Alito?

Last edited Wed Feb 1, 2017, 09:10 PM - Edit history (1)

Yesterday wes the 11th anniversary of our so-called Democratic "leaders" absurd refusal to filibuster Alito.

Dare we hope that more of members of the 115th Senate will "see the light" on Gorsuch and any future Trump SCOTUS nominees?

In DC's bizzaro world, in 2006, 19 members of the Senate irrationally took the position that "opposition" means casting a meaningless "no" vote against Alito on the floor, while refusing join 24 of their colleagues in a winning filibuster that would ACTUALLY stop the war crime defender from ascending to our highest court.

It's an irrational notion that ranks right up there with Pelosi's "I would support Impeachment (Bush) if I weren't the Speaker."

We're already hearing the same noises from some of them. But dare we hope Shumer and Durbin will mount a serious effort to "whip" their colleagues into line against Gorsuch? (And then do the same against any future Trump nominees?)

Dare we hope to see more of them stand and fight on on principle?

Dare we hope they'll make enough noise to show the nation that Dems actually HAVE a few inviolate principles? That there are actually a few things Dems are willing to go all out for, win or lose?

I may be an idiot, but I have a spark of hope.

Let's take a look back at the tragic failure on the part of the 109th Senate. Perhaps there are lessons to be learned that can help us create a different outcome this time around.

The 24 rational/principled members who came through for an Alito filibuster:

8 of the 24 still there:
Chuck Schumer
Dick Durbin
Dianne Feinstein
Patrick Leahy
Patty Murray
Jack Reed
Debbie Stabenow
Ron Wyden

16 of the 24 gone:
Joe Biden
Barbara Boxer
Hillary Clinton
Mark Dayton
Chris Dodd
Russ Feingold
Jim Jeffords
Ted Kennedy
John Kerry
Frank Lautenberg
Carl Levin
Bob Menendez
Barbara Mikulski
Barack Obama
Harry Reid
Paul Sarbanes

Just a note -- Of the above, Menendez and Feinstein were reluctant supporters. I credit the concerted efforts of the many, many people (a good number of of whom were DUers) who confronted them face-to-face and showed them the disgust and disdain with which people outside the beltway bubble viewed the notion that voting yes for cloture and no on the floor constituted opposition. I saw it first hand as part of a contingent that met with one of Menendez staffers. He was a "newbie" being asked to buck the "time honored Senate tradition" of giving support to Alito as a "native son" of NJ. In absence of pressure from constituents, I don't think he would have come around.

The 19 who irrationally cast a meaningless "No" vote on the floor after refusing to ACTUALLY oppose Alito in what would have been a winning filibuster.

2 of the 19 still there:
Maria Cantwell
Tom Carper

17 of the 19 gone:
Daniel Akaka
Max Baucus
Evan Bayh
Jeff Bingaman
Barbara Boxer
Kent Conrad
Lincoln Chaffee
Byron Dorgan
Tom Harkin
aniel Inouye
Herb Kohl
Mary Landrieu
Joe Lieberman
Blanche Lincoln
Bill Nelson
Mark Pryor
Jay Rockefeller
Ken Salazar

(I can't help but note that a far larger percent of the rational folks are either still there, or were tapped for "better things."

Way back when....

Where they stood -- citizen lobbyists at work:

"Alito 8" Democratic Senators who are blocking the filibuster:

Four Groups Award Kerry "Spine" Cerficate for Leading Alito Filibuster Effort.

They keep doing it right, we keep doing it wrong.

"Alito -- NOT a "Done Deal"

It's Worse. He (Alito) showed his true colors in his answer to Biden's question.http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.php?az=show_mesg&forum=364&topic_id=146536&mesg_id=148694

Rejecting Alito is part and parcel of defining the crimes

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Reply Dare we hope? Or will Dems repeat 1/31/2006 refusal to Filibuster Alito? (Original post)
pat_k Feb 2017 OP
sheshe2 Feb 2017 #1
pat_k Feb 2017 #2
yurbud Feb 2017 #3

Response to pat_k (Original post)

Wed Feb 1, 2017, 08:52 PM

1. K&R!

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Response to sheshe2 (Reply #1)

Wed Feb 1, 2017, 09:51 PM

2. Thanks!

The tepid response to the post is giving my spark of hope a run for it's money.

Regardless. i have a feeling/hope that members of the Senate who take the "vote for cloture; cast a meaningless no vote on the floor" position will face a tsunami of political activism far beyond anything they thought was possible.


Many Democrats... are appalled by Trump’s executive action on Friday banning refugees from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the country. Trump, they say, wants to roll over Congress, ignore precedent and force through unacceptable Cabinet nominees. And after a tumultuous first week with the president, Democrats are not in a mood to compromise.

History also hangs heavily over the party. Democratic leaders are still furious that Republicans last year did not give President Obama’s moderate nominee for the Court, Judge Merrick Garland, a hearing or a vote, instead holding the seat open until after the November election. Democrats are stinging from the rebuke and want payback.

“They broke all the precedents and they need to own that,” said Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy. “The ghost of Merrick Garland still floats around this place.”

Democrats are under intense pressure from their liberal base to oppose any nominee Trump puts forward. On Tuesday outside of Schumer’s apartment in Brooklyn, liberal protestors staged a rally called “What the F--k, Chuck," protesting him for allowing through a handful of Trump’s security-related nominees. At a demonstration held by top Democratic lawmakers in support of Muslim refugees on the Supreme Court steps on Monday, some in the liberal crowd booed at the lawmakers. “Do your job!” they chanted...

Just as worrying for the party are the 10 seats held by Democrats up for reelection in 2018 who represent states that Trump won in November. If Democrats obstruct Trump’s nominee—particularly one as typically among conservatives as Gorsuch—they could take a beating in the midterms and further erode the party’s power in the Senate.

Democrats who oppose Trump’s nominee, could face a flood of advertisements and conservative dollars. Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill, a state Trump won overwhelmingly, said that she wants any Trump nominee to receive full consideration. . .

Still, there could be an even greater danger in opposing the progressive base. Activist groups are marshalling their members to attack and oppose any senators who support a nominee that is not mainstream enough.“If Trump nominates an extremist,” said Ben Wikler, the Washington Director of MoveOn.org, a liberal activist group, “that's a moment of truth that will shape the political lives of everyone who has to make a decision about how to react.”

When McConnell said “What we hope would be that our Democratic friends will treat President Trump's nominees in the same way that we treated Clinton and Obama." he appears to have forgotten about their treatment of Judge Garland.

You asked for it Mitch. Hope the Dems listen. Stop Goirsuch.

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Response to pat_k (Original post)

Thu Feb 2, 2017, 07:05 PM

3. it was insane and insulting that we had to melt their phone lines to get that level of opposition

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