Though several prominent Democrats are expected to join the John Kerry-led filibuster on Sam Alito’s Supreme Court confirmation, most agree they don’t have the numbers to succeed.
Some Democrats are saying more, though.
Barack Obama, Illinois Senator and future presidential candidate, says “procedural maneuvers” such as the filibuster are the “wrong way” of asserting the party’s agenda.
Barack, baby, when you’re the minority party, and the majority party is a radioactive runaway train, you’ve got to use what you’ve got to stop them. Should Democrats respect their party more for allowing Alito a smooth confirmation, or because they at least tried to stop it? I go with the latter.
In conceding that Alito will likely make the cut, Obama said, "…if we're going to oppose a nominee… we've got to persuade the American people that, in fact, their values are at stake."
That sounds like election language, O. The president picked Alito, and we don’t get to vote him in, nor will we get to vote him out of he turns out to be the wolf in judge’s robes he’s purported to be.
Many prominent Democrats have warned that a Democratic filibuster will be used by Republicants to frame the former as “obstructionist.”
They absolutely will frame it that way, because that’s how they work. And their devoted Kool-Aid-drinking minions will buy every word of it. But those kind of people are already a lost cause to Democrats; I wouldn’t waste any time or energy on them.
When the 2006 elections roll around, Republicants will ratchet up their “obstructionist” rhetoric. I hope Democrats will not hesitate to counter with this White House’s own stonewalling on pre-Iraq war intelligence, Hurricane Katrina response efforts, Jack Abramoff, Plamegate, NSA and too much other crap to type.
When it comes time to do battle – in Congress or at the polls – we’ll be looking to Democratic leaders to step up to the plate, not just cede the “obstructionist” rhetoric to Republicants. Two can play at that game. It's time to suit up and get in there.