Day By Day© by Chris Muir.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Why it's time to go "nuclear"

Here's Star Parker lucidly explaining why the Senate should go nuclear and give up the judicial filibuster:

[T]he nominating process is fundamentally different from the legislative process. The checks and balances and institutional bias toward deliberation in government is critical in our free country. Although, as result, we rarely get legislation that makes anyone completely happy, this is the price of freedom and a participatory democracy. We have a process of give-and-take and compromise. But nominees up for confirmation cannot be put into the same kind of sausage-making machine that produces legislation. A controversial bill can be debated, amended, tweaked and, yes, filibustered. There always remains the opportunity for another nip and tuck. If the president doesn't like what ultimately gets sent to him, he can veto it and then Congress still gets another vote on the vetoed bill. Unlike legislation, we can't take human beings apart and then put them back together to create a new product that will pass the consensus test. Either you take them as they are or reject them. Nominations, then, that pass out of committee should be submitted for a simple up-or-down floor vote.
That's a good rational statement of how our government should work. I like even better Parker's conclusion about why, in this case it should work as intended, even though that working process benefits the Republicans:
The American people, last November, elected a Republican president and a Republican Senate. If we don't believe that the American people know what they are doing when they go to the polls, our way of life is in bad shape. We have to assume that a Republican-dominated federal government reflects a conservatively oriented electorate. It is only logical to expect that judicial nominees will reflect this orientation and we can only conclude that this is the result of a healthy democracy. Procedural games that undermine this process reflect a sick democracy.