Daily Archives: February 14, 2016

With a new president on the horizon, Democrat Chuck Schumer calls for a delay in replacing Scalia

Chuck_Schumer

No no no, you’ll have to wait

Time for the new guy to have a chance 

New York Sen. Charles E. Schumer, a powerful member of the Democratic leadership, said Friday the Senate should not confirm another U.S. Supreme Court nominee under President Obama “except in extraordinary circumstances.”

“We should reverse the presumption of confirmation,” Schumer told the American Constitution Society convention in Washington. “The Supreme Court is dangerously out of balance. We cannot afford to see Justice Scalia replaced by another Stephens, or Justice Alito by another Ginsberg.”

Well okay, that’s not quite what he said on this morning’s news programs, when he called for the Senate to give genuine consideration to whomever Obama selects, it’s what he said (with some Justices’ names reversed) back in 2007, when Bush had 18 months left in his term, and Schumer didn’t want to see any Supreme Court vacancies filled during that period.

There’s nothing unexpected about political hypocrisy – in fact, the Republicans are all over the networks this morning too, staking out the 2007 Schumer position, but it can cause one to sigh.

 

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More on the People’s Party: It’s revoked its 2008 ban on accepting lobbyist and pac money

Democrats protest DNC

Furious Democrats storm DNC headquarters (Frank Farricker in hoodie, lower left)

Well, they need it to help Hilary fight off Bernie.

During the 2008 presidential campaign, Barack Obama led the way in having the DNC change their rules to remove the corrosive influence of money in politics by having the Democratic National Committee reject contributions from lobbyists and PACs. This was seen in some circles as a refutation of the GOP and their big money donors, restoring some power to the grassroots. The health of the body politic was being tended to, citizens! Integrity was their watchword and the voices of the masses would be heard once more.

But with another campaign upon us, the DNC has suddenly realized that campaigns cost money, and perhaps all of that outside cash isn’t such a bad thing. (Washington Post)

The Democratic National Committee has rolled back restrictions introduced by presidential candidate Barack Obama in 2008 that banned donations from federal lobbyists and political action committees.

The decision was viewed with disappointment Friday morning by good government activists who saw it as a step backward in the effort to limit special interest influence in Washington. Some suggested it could provide an advantage to Hillary Clinton’s fundraising efforts.

“It is a major step in the wrong direction,” said longtime reform advocate Fred Wertheimer. “And it is completely out of touch with the clear public rejection of the role of political money in Washington,” expressed during the 2016 campaign.

As if her DNC-supplied superdelegates weren’t enough of an advantage, Hillary’s party machine has set up fundraising committees for her and Bernie, and is allocating money to each. Tally to date: Hillary, $26.9M.  Bernie one thousand dollars.

 

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DNC chair Debbie Wasserman: We use super delegates to protect our leadership from grassroots competition

Black Women

Oh you can vote, honey, it just won’t mean a thing

Refreshingly honest, perhaps, but also typically liberal: we know what’s best for the little people, and we’ll do it.

CNN’s Jake Tapper asked Wasserman Schultz on Thursday, “Hillary Clinton lost to Bernie Sanders in New Hampshire by 22 percentage points, the biggest victory in a contested Democratic primary there since John F. Kennedy, but it looks as though Clinton and Sanders are leaving the Granite State with the same number of delegates in their pockets because Clinton has the support of New Hampshire’s superdelegates, these party insiders. What do you tell voters who are new to the process who says[sic] this makes them feel like it’s all rigged?

Wasserman Schultz replied, “Well, let me just make sure that I can clarify exactly what was available during the primaries in Iowa and in New Hampshire. The unpledged delegates [superdelegates] are a separate category. The only thing available on the ballot in a primary and a caucus is the pledged delegates— those that are tied to the candidate that they are pledged to support, and they receive a proportional number of delegates going into our convention.

She added, Unpledged delegates exist really to make sure that party leaders and elected officials don’t have to be in a position where they are running against grassroots activists. We are as a Democratic Party really highlight and emphasize inclusiveness and diversity at our convention, and so we want to give every opportunity to grassroots activists and diverse, committed Democrats to be able to participate, attend, and be a delegate at the convention. And so we separate out those unpledged delegates to make sure that there isn’t competition between them.

Which is why Hillary Clinton will be the party’s nominee, unless she appears destined to lose, in which case the party organization will choose another insider to run. Whatever happens, don’t look for the VT communist to be on the Democrat line come November.

(And no, the Republicans don’t operate this way – so which is the party of special interests?)

 

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Anton Scalia in dissent

Prof. Reynolds has a column in USA Today in which he praises Scalia’s dissents even in cases where Reynolds himself would have sided with the majority.Excerpt:

Even more striking were his words in United States v. Virginia, which overturned single-sex education at the Virginia Military Institute:  “Much of the Court’s opinion is devoted to deprecating the closed-mindedness of our forebears with regard to women’s education, and even with regard to the treatment of women in areas that have nothing to do with education. Closed minded they were — as every age is, including our own, with regard to matters it cannot guess, because it simply does not consider them debatable. The virtue of a democratic system with a First Amendment is that it readily enables the people, over time, to be persuaded that what they took for granted is not so, and to change their laws accordingly. That system is destroyed if the smug assurances of each age are removed from the democratic process and written into the Constitution. So to counterbalance the Court’s criticism of our ancestors, let me say a word in their praise: they left us free to change. The same cannot be said of this most illiberal Court, which has embarked on a course of inscribing one after another of the current preferences of the society (and in some cases only the counter-majoritarian preferences of the society’s law-trained elite) into our Basic Law.”

Every year, that passage has seemed more relevant to me, perhaps because we live in an age in which  those “smug assurances” seem especially smug. As we remember Justice Scalia’s time, let us remember that every age’s smug certainties come to an end eventually and that the dissents of Supreme Court Justices often turn out to be prophetic.

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