Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Hypocrisy abounds

David Espo of The Associated Press has written a fantastic piece revealing the hypocrisy on both sides of the U.S. Senate debate over the filibuster and the nuclear option.

Espo reveals the fallacy of Republican senators' claim that they never filibustered any of President Clinton's judicial nominees who had majority support -- they just used other procedural devices instead -- and the inconsistency of Sens. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., and Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, who called for the abolition of the filibuster when they were in the majority but are staunch supporters of it now that they're in the minority.

The GOP blocked 60 of Clinton's judicial appointees from 1996 to 2000, including 20 appeals court nominees. By contrast, more than 95 percent of President Bush's first-term judicial picks were confirmed. Getting Bush an extra 5 percent isn't worth eliminating the filibuster, which is one of the few tools that prevents a bare majority from running roughshod over everyone else and thus is a good thing to have around regardless of who's in power.

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