Sunday, April 24, 2005

Sen. Tim Johnson ~ Does he think we're that ignorant?

Oh, you silly silly democrats......

I was watching Senator Tim Johnson from South Dakota the other day and thought I'd pass along what he said......with my remarks added.

You can read the full text of his remarks here. Just hit (Senate)4-21 #13.


...............This notion that somehow in the midst of Congress rules that have been in place for generations should be eliminated and the bipartisan mandate they allow for should be eliminated is a step in the wrong direction. [And the blocking of Judges? Where is that in the rules?]

One of the consequences of the 60-vote rule is it takes both parties by the scruff of the neck, brings them together and says: You will have to reach across the aisle and cooperate, coordinate with your colleagues from the other political party, whether or not you like it. That has been a very valuable asset to the Senate and, again, one of the things that distinguishes the debate and deliberation and progress of legislation in the Senate from what transpires with our colleagues in the other body. [Yes, but if you don't have an argument against the judges and just want to hold them up for clearly political reasons there is no good reason you should be able to block them from getting an up or down vote.]

There is too much division in America today. There is too much partisanship. The rhetoric has grown far too bitter. It has grown far too extreme. [Like calling Pres. Bush's judicial appointment NEANDERTHALS?] What America wants, and what I believe my constituents want, is more governing from the center. [Did he miss the red/blue county by county map from last election?] Most South Dakotans and most Americans recognize neither party has all the answers, neither party has all the good or bad ideas, and we are governing best when we come together in the political center. That will leave the far left and the far right unhappy. They are unhappy most of the time, anyway. But I do think governing from the center, which the 60-vote rule requires, is one of the great strengths of the Senate.

It would be a horrible mistake for this body to discard that bipartisan mandate that rule imposes on this body. A loss of bipartisanship would not only affect the consideration of judges, but the precedent would certainly be in place to affect consideration of all other legislation as well. [This is an OUTRIGHT BALD FACED LIE! The rule change would ONLY affect judges.]

Keeping in mind that this body, even with that rule in place, has approved some 205 Federal judges nominated by President Bush, has rejected roughly 10, [No, they haven't. The Senate has been blocked, by the dems, from being able to vote on the judges. They haven't been rejected, they've been blocked.] and that we have one of the lowest judicial vacancy rates in American history right now--in fact, about 60 percent of all Federal appellate judges are appointees of Republican administrations over the last number of years [No shit Sherlock. Could that be because three of the last four Presidents have been Republican?] --to suggest somehow there is a crisis with judges is a fabrication, frankly. It is simply untrue.

Judges are being considered, voted on, approved at a record rate. In fact, all of these judges have had up-or-down votes as opposed [Again this is another outright LIE. They didn't have up or down votes, the only thing that has been voted on is Cloture, and the dems are blocking that.] , sadly, to the experience during the Clinton administration where some 60 of his nominees never received a hearing or a vote. [Because the Repubs. had control of the Judiciary committee.] In this case every nominee has received a vote in committee and on the floor [NO, they haven't] , albeit that vote on the floor is consistent with the 60-vote parliamentary rule of the Senate which does require both sides to come together in the center.

[Now this next paragraph is really why I posted this.]

Clearly, President Bush can have the approval of 100 percent of his judges. All he has to do is to nominate conservative Republican judges who are part of the conservative mainstream of America, a very broad range of discretion that he has. Those judges will be confirmed, as have the 200 plus who have routinely been confirmed by this body.

[First off Pres. Bush has never said he want 100% of his Judges approved, I'm sure he'd like that but all he wants is for them to have an up or down vote in the Senate. If the dems don't like the judges they can vote nay, but since they know they don't have the votes to stop them from being approved they playing this filibuster game.

The next part....."nominate conservative Republican judges who are part of the conservative mainstream of America" is exactly what Pres. Bush has done, the problem is "conservative Republican judges" are pro-life and the dems hate that. That really get to the crux of the matter, the dems are so beholden to the abortion lobby it scares them to think Roe Vs. Wade might be heard in front of the Supreme Court with pro-life judges sitting on the bench. Which is why these particular judges are being blocked, they might be place on the SCOTUS once the present justices start to retire. If the dems wanted to be honest [lol] they'd come out and say that all of this was just a prelude to the coming fight when Renquist steps down, that is the fit is really going to hit the shan!

Another way I read into what he says is it's like he's saying "President Bush can have any judge he wants, as long as those judges have the full approval of the minority." Is he sick in the head? That's not how things work, there is the MAJORITY (the winning party) and the MINORITY (the losing party). Does anyone think that if the tables were turned the dems would allow the repubs to block their nominees? I think not!

And why the hell are some repubs worried about what's going to happen once the dems get in the majority again [shudder]? Haven't the dems been saying for the last 2 years that the "rights of the minority" need to be protected?

If the rule is changed and the dems get back in power I'm sure they'll just change the rule back, right? (yes, that is dripping with sarcasm.)]

The Senate does have a constitutional obligation of advice and consent on these lifetime appointments. That is one of the reasons why this issue is so profoundly important, because this is not simply a legislative matter that will come and go and be reconsidered at another time. We are considering the appointments of people to high office for a lifetime. It is imperative the Senate insist that each of these individuals, men and women, be part of the political and judicial mainstream of America [Says who?] , albeit we have a Republican President, and certainly he will nominate conservative Republican judges, as well he ought, and they will be approved in a routine manner as over 200 have already.

But there is an importance that the nominees do fall within the political mainstream, and the one test to see to it that is the case is the 60-vote margin rule where no judge, regardless of what their political background or judicial background might be, can be approved unless, in fact, there is some modest bipartisan support, not an overwhelming consensus.

Nobody is suggesting a 90-percent rule or 75-percent rule or even the 66-percent rule which used to be the case for filibusters some years ago but that there be a 60-vote margin. I don't think that is asking too much in the name of bipartisanship, in the name of requiring both parties to come together, and in the name of diminishing the level of partisan hardball that characterizes the other body and to some degree has infected the debate and the rhetoric even here in the Senate.

[And exactly where is that in the Constitution? I'll tell ya right now it's not...

Article II Sec. II says......

[The President] shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, whose Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the Heads of Departments.

Nowhere does the Constitution say anything about a supermajority being required to pass judges. So who's changing the rules? Looks to me like it's the dems that are.]