Hasty Ruminations

Speaking out, to remove all doubt. http://hastyruminations.blogspot.com

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Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Alito Hearings

It's getting worse. They got his wife crying now in the hearing room. What did SHE do to them?!

This is not, I think, an extraordinarily gifted Congress, nor even an average one. It will not go down in our history as having contributed either to our legislative wisdom or to a treasury of good, model laws. We should not look for statesmen, revolutionaries, brilliant philosophers nor inventors in its ranks. Given that the 109th Congress is at least as venal and plebeian as any in our history, it is still not too much for us to ask that they stop disgracing us and drooling down their fronts on television. If they are there to represent We the People, then our recourse is not only to impeach them, but also to wait until their six-year Senate term expires to vote them out, and always we should call them to task whenever they act like ill mannered children. As they did today.

We have had some recent presidents who have not earned all of our respect as perhaps they should have. But when a president, brilliant or lackluster, selects a nominee for the Supreme Court, Appellate Court, District Court, Ambassadorship or Cabinet Secretary, the nominee deserves respect, hospitality and deference from the Senate in its Constitutional role of advise and consent. A nominee testifying before the Judiciary Committee is not in the same category as witnesses from the Mafia, or Admiral Poindexter and his Iran-Contra hoods, or anyone from Enron: felons or crook wannabees deserve the third degree. Nominees of good character for high office deserve respect, thoughtful questions, an opportunity to be heard and an up-or-down vote. They do not deserve automatic confirmation, but the fact of their nomination alone should require respect.

Senators who think that they are above all of this should be censured by the Senate, and kicked off the Judiciary Committee. Those like some we saw today who grandstand at the expense of the nominee should be publicly reprimanded.

Or so say I.


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