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May 23, 2005

BREAKING: "Bipartisan" Group Caves To Liberals

They claim that their agreement of 14 "bipartisan" supposed moderates -- including the Hitler-invoking extremist Robert Byrd -- will stave off a confrontation.

The details are sketchy.

Three of Bush's nominees -- Owens, Brown, and Pryor -- will get cloture tomorrow, and then an up-or-down vote.

Two more -- Saad and Myers -- will not. Or rather, there's no agreement to vote for cloture, ergo they won't get cloture.

The Democrats claim they will not filibuster again under any except "extraodinary circumnstances" -- but judging from the left-wing advocacy groups' ability to convince Charles Schumer et al. that a mainstream conservative is a threat to the very foundations of the Republic, I have a feeling that any conservative nominated to the Supreme Court will be deemed an "extraodinary" circumstance justifying a filibuster.

John McCain is in full peacock mode.

Others speak of "trust" ensuring the compromise holds. There is no trust. Democrats will not honor the agreement. It's that simple.

The filibusters will continue, with the connivance of McCain, Warner, Snowe, etc.

Other Reactions... John from Powerline thinks it's a heinous deal, and I don't disagree.

He channels Andrew Sullivan by noting he feels "sick" to see that alte kacher Byrd preening about saving democracy, and I can't say I feel too much differently.

Though I don't know if I'm "sick" per se. It's sort of what I expected.

I just want a drink and a reason to vote for any Republicans in 2006.

Michelle Malkin has a few more quotes. She hasn't weighed in yet on the merits of the compromise. I have a feeling she soon will.

Captain Ed:

If the Republicans have foresworn the Byrd option without an ironclad guarantee that the filibuster will not be used on nominees with majority support, then they have traded their hard-won majority for de facto minority status -- and the leadership will have to answer for this result. Let's see what the exact wording of the agreement will be.

NRO's Ramesh Ponnuru:

This may have been a choice by 14 senators for comity, but its unintended consequence will be to raise the stakes on the next Supreme Court confirmation--which will decide what rules the Senate is really going to follow. A decision has been delayed, not made.

Exactly. Mike DeWine says that if the Democrats start this up again, we can once again invoke the "constitutional option," as he's nice enough to call it. Nice theory, but just give the liberal media time to work on this little pussy some more.

FoxNews' Major Garrett notes that three judges, whom Democrats have for "months and months and months" branded judicial extremists are now, apparently, deemed not so extremist after all. He claims this to be a win for the White House on what constitutes "extremist."

Protein Wisdom deems this "unacceptable." Preach it, brother.

But... Jim Angle reports it's not clear that Saad or Myers would have received a majority vote anyway, so the fact that they continue to be filibustered may be a face-saving sop to the Democrats.

No link for Daily "Screw 'em" Kos, but he's doing little dances, saying it's not a "good day to be Bill Frist." He gets -- unlike John McCain -- that it's less important than Janice Brown gets to an appeal court than a nominee with majority support actually gets to the Supreme Court, whether a "conservative extremist" (read: mainstream conservative jurist) or not.

On the other hand, fellow-traveller Atrios "doesn't like the sound of it."

Worse Than You Thought Update! The Devil, the say, is in the details, and a very nasty little devil lurks in these:

Here's what the Democrats commit to in the future: "Nominees should only be filibustered under extraordinary circumstances, and each signatory must use his or her own discretion and judgment in determining whether such circumstances exist." Here's what the Republicans commit to: "In light of the spirit and continuing commitments made in this agreement, we commit to oppose the rules changes in the 109th Congress. . ."

Ahhh... they commit to "following their consciences," we commit to opposing the constitutional option whether our conscience dictates we do so or not.

Again from Ramesh Ponnuru of NRO.

No Light At The End of the Tunnel: Someone cheerfully notes:

Ace, you do realize that said Supreme Court nominee will be Janice Rogers Brown herself?

That's the only upside here.

A commenter on Fox made a similar point, that it would be difficult to deem Brown "extremist" after having just allowed her through.

Allow me to piss in your cereal.

They will claim that Brown can be trusted, kinda, on the Appeals Court, where she is required to follow the precedent of a higher court.

They will claim she is too "extremist" to be put onto the top court.

And that their filibuster is therefore under those "extraodinary circumstances" we'll be hearing so much, and so frequently, about.

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posted by Ace at 07:51 PM

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