Thursday, November 13, 2003

File Under P for Petulant

The Democrats in the Senate have been filibustering three (plus one withdrawn name) judicial nominees (out of nearly 200 judicial nominations the Administration has made). Which is their prerogative. And exercising this power of the minority has upset the Senate Republicans so much that whatever interest they had in governing has been cast aside in favor of a ridiculous 30 hour session on the filibustering of the nominees. Today is November 13, the fiscal year began on October 1st. The Senate has not completed the budget for the year. The Senate has other alleged priorities including the Medicare bill and the Energy bill (among others). But that can all wait while Rick Santorum orchestrates his 30 hour hissy fit.

There certainly are legitimate questions about the modern filibuster process which no longer requires endless debate but rather the threat of endless debate. It's a two-sided coin- the Senate can take care of the rest of its business instead of being ground to a halt but would the Civil Rights legislation have ever passed under such a painless filibuster procedure. Legitimate questions, but hardly pressing. Does the fate of the nation hang in airing and settling the judicial nominee filibuster? Nope. Is this honestly a pressing matter which needs to take precedence over the budget? Not on your life.

But, here we are. In the modern Republican Party, Governance is for sissies.

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