In analyzing the so-called compromise and the comments from all sides, and that would include Democrats, Republicans, both who hate the "deal" and those who are looking to put the best face on it, it appears that the following are all true.
1. The mainstream media claims it is a victory for the Democrats. That is the spin the Democratic leadership has played. They use terms such as protecting the constitution and steeping back from the "abyss." Frankly, listening to them is a little nauseating.
2. Then there are the conservative Republicans who wanted a vote and didn't get one, thought that they would eliminate this nonsense about tying up any up/down votes for judges and are mad as hell at DeWine, Graham and McCain.
3. There are those who say it only postpones the inevitable when some extremist democrat claims that there are extraordinary reasons to oppose a nominee.
4. We anticipate that the first three will get confirmed. Owen has been confirmed and Brown and Pryor are next.
So here is my question: What if Senator Frist continues to submit the nominees to the floor for confirmation after the first three are confirmed?
Which one of the remaining candidates is any more controversial that the first three nominees?
They all seem less of an issue. So why will anyone of the Democrats trigger the break in "good faith" which will then have the issue of whether it is allowed under the rules to require 60 votes to invoke an up or down vote. Seems to me that Frist needs to just keep on submitting the names and wait until the Democrats blink. After all, at least three of the gang of seven Republicans will vote for these nominees.
That gives Frist his 51 votes.
So while I respect all of the arguments, made by those who are angry at the "compromise," especially the ones about how it very bad form to go around the leadership and make the Republican leadership and the president seem as though they are not in control, it may be that we could gain more in the long run if we stay true to the prize and focus on getting votes for all the candidates.
So as I have stated before, the Senate needs to continue to hear from you. You must ask for the up/down vote on all the candidates. Call Frist and ask him to submit the names for a vote.
Did you read this in the news or hear it on the wires
Once again it seems that unless you remain vigilant, you can be left behind.
What if this Gallop poll had been published on Monday?
Gallup Shock: 69 Percent Oppose Dem Filibusters
An overwhelming majority of Americans agree with Republicans who say President Bush's judicial nominees deserve an up or down vote, according to a Gallup survey released yesterday.The bombshell survey found that 35 percent "want to see the filibuster rules changed so that those judicial nominees are subject to an up-or-down vote," Gallup said. Thirty-four percent "want to see the filibuster rule preserved" but "would like to see the Senate have an up-or-down vote on those nominees."
Only 19 percent told Gallup that Democrats were right to filibuster judicial appointments, with 12 percent voicing no opinion.
Twenty-four hours after the bombshell poll's release, news that 69 percent of Americans want Democrats to stop filibustering Bush's judicial nominees has yet to be reported by a single major U.S. media outlet.
In another stunning development, a plurality of those surveyed by Gallup - 38 percent - said that Christian influence on the courts was "not enough," while only 27 percent disagreed. Twenty-eight percent said Christian influence on the courts was "about right."
The Gallup survey also found that 29 percent of Americans "think Federal court judges are too liberal" - with just 19 percent saying the judiciary is "too conservative."
The failure of the mainstream media to report the news honestly and objectively will seal its fate. Here is a story that was buried because it didnot advance the extreme left's agenda.
Once again I urge you to continue to call the Senate and demand an up or down vote on all of the nominees.
Let the voting continue.
Priscilla Owen has been confirmed by the Senate 56-43. Now Senator Frist must continue to call for votes on the remaining nominees and get them confirmed. He should not delay but should act with due diligence and clearness of purpose. And while everyone can talk about "brinks of the abyss" and being at the edge of "Armageddon," the truth is that if the Majority Leader keeps bringing the nominations to the floor, then there will be votes on those nominees.
Consider it this way. The judicial nominees have been held hostage. We have been negotiating with the holders. We have just had three released. No one has been jetisoned and the "holders" have not lost their "power." But neither have those seeking to get the matter settled through an up or down vote. The power to change the rules still exists if the Democrats act in bad faith. So the simple thing to do is keep calling for the vote.
As for what you can do - keep calling your senators and ask them to keep calling for the vote on the appointees.
In truth - while the conservatives do not like the so called "deal," if we can get up or down votes on all the judges, then it will be the leftist Democrat extremists who will have blinked.
Averting a Crisis? - Let the voting begin.
So the Senate has found a compromise regarding the showdown on the vote to end the Senate rules to prevent the vote on judges. And no one is happy. Well, the first truism in negotiations is that if no one is happy, then it is a good compromise.
But wait, are there those who did not want to go the distance on forcing the vote? Is this why we have watched this dog and pony show regarding the vote to confirm judges since February? Or as usual, is there more there than what meets the eye?
Let's recap. The Democrats do not want certain judges appointed because they are, or at least the Democrats believe they are, against abortion and think that Roe v. Wade
is bad law. Now aside from the fact that any good constitutional lawyer, professor or judge KNOWS that Roe v. Wade
is one of the most poorly reasoned decisions in the history of jurisprudence, the Democrats are locked into this position because of a segment of their base, (the extreme left, the extreme liberal women's groups, and their allied companions) wants them to stop these appointments. The rhetoric has really stretched to the limits and the Democrats are left with nowhere to turn. If the vote tomorrow went against them, then they were doomed, at least on this question.
Meanwhile there are some Republicans who do not like the idea of "tampering" with rules, unless they happen to deal with campaign finance reform - then they like to mess with the rules - but I digress. Further they do not like the corner that their friends on the left have found themselves. Finally while some of these Republicans vote conservatively, they do not like being lumped into the term "far right" and remember - anyone right of Kennedy and Kerry are "far right" because after all Mr. Kerry represents the fondest hopes of the middle class and the heartland of America. ( For those slow- that is sarcasm). So here is what the "mod squad" says to each other. We need to save face, avoid a vote, so we can continue to stay in the center of attention, make our respective leadership tell the two "extremes" that they cannot tell the senate what to do. And of course, the Republican leadership gets skewered because certain people do not want Senator Frist cornering the conservative Christian vote. And one may add that this all could have been discussed and voted on in February as opposed to May.
But what is the bottom line.
We actually won although no one will admit it from either side.
Understand that all of this showed a lack of principled leadership as the effort was made to find cover from the dreaded conservative right.
Still we have not lost anything except the typical spin in the press.
Why do I say that?
First - there are three reasons:
Owen, Brown, Pryor.
Then there is another reason: There will be have to be votes on Meyers and Saad. And Griffith, and the others. They are not the ones that the left fears. They will all most likely be confirmed.
And then there is another reason: Can anyone define "extraordinary reason"?
Finally - Can Howard Dean or Ralph Neas or any NOW activist be happy with Owens, Brown and Pryor on the bench? I don't think so.
I agree with most of the pundits that do not like this compromise. Frankly I wanted a vote to see if we really had the muscle. But apparently some do not want the test of strength now. As for having the fortitude to force a vote, apparently it is not there.
Now I am not sure that I would like being told by some of my party's more nuancedmembers that I have been made a party to a deal. Indeed personally I may have been very upset that we did not get this issue resolved. Yet if we can start the voting and get them confirmed, then it does not matter who "wins" the "spin."
I saw a lot of this while I was in D.C. last week attending the second annual National Catholic Prayer Breakfast. We talked about this issue regarding the judges. Indeed it was on everyone's mind. The president spoke (Although glancing at the Arizona papers, who would have known). Archbishop Chaput gave the keynote address. 1600 people crammed into the Hilton to remind themselves that there is an awful lot of work to be done.
So while the pundits talk, call your Senator and demand the voting begin now - not next week - not next month - now. Let us put some fine people on the bench. And then lets nominate some more fine pro life jurists who believe in the constitution and the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Force the issue now.
As I just checked the news, the vote to close debate and move toward final confirmation on Priscilla Owen passed 81 -18. Frist needs to move them all through as soon as possible.
Let the voting begin.
Let the voting continue.
Let the senate vote up or down on all the nominees.
Then all shall have done their duty.
Considering that the last time I entered anything on this blog was following the death of Terri Schiavo, a lot has happened and not happened during the month of April.
The death of John Paul II in Saturday, April 2, 2005 revealed an outpouring of love and admiration for this son of Poland, this son of the Church, that only the calloused and dead of heart were not moved. Here was a man who held to the faith of The church and her beliefs and had the courage to proclaim a Gospel of Life. Here was someone who was not timid about preaching Christ and calling people to a deep personal life changing relationship with the Son of Mary. He did not compromise the teachings of the Church. He spoke about the inherent dignity of the human person made in the image of God. Young people, looking for Truth, flocked to his message to live lives greater than the empty promises of the prince of the world.
In his sufferings and in his death, he showed us the way of the cross and reminded us of the words of the Gospel, "Be not afraid."
His successor, Benedict XVI will continue to promote life and teach us that all of us must be engaged in the battle to bring about a culture of life. The Church has not written off Europe and seeks to re-evangelize the continent. Here it is that the next generation will be called to spread the gospel. A gospel that affirms the dignity and purpose of every human being from the moment of conception through natural death. The choice of the name Benedict was no fluke. Saint Benedict is the apostle to Europe and the protector of the great works of antiquity. As Europe struggles to find its soul, let us pray that there will be a new recognition of the importance of protecting and preserving human life.
I will close for now by reminding everyone that Fr. Frank Pavone will be in Phoenix on June 13, 2005. See the website for details.