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View Diary: Extend Debate on Alito (202 comments)

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  •  In other words... (none)
    You want extended debate so that any weak-kneed senators on our side of the aisle won't have to say they are supporting a filibuster.

    I doubt that the semantics will really work, though.  I think your comment below is correct -- Frist will go nuclear pretty quickly, even if no one has officially called the extended debate a filibuster.

    The only way the "extended debate" lingo is helpful is if Frist doesn't have 50 votes for his nuclear option. Response For Hurricane Evacuees

    by socal on Mon Jan 23, 2006 at 10:20:56 AM PST

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    •  It also puts an impatient Frist... (none) a less defensible position for public opinion.
      •  Yes, but (none)
        Public opinion isn't going to put much pressure on the "nuclear" vote one way or the other.

        What is critical is whether Frist will have 50 votes to nuke the filibuster.  The potential GOP defectors are people like John Warner, people who are more concerned with maintaining senate tradition and less concerned with public opinion about filibusters.

        In the best-case (for us) scenario, six or seven GOP senators like Warner would tell Frist they won't go nuclear.  If Frist doesn't have Warner et al. on board, then Frist won't call for a nuclear vote at all.

        (Does anyone have a list of potential "no nukes" GOP senators?  Warner, Chafee, Collins, Snowe... even with all of those we'd need at least two more.) Response For Hurricane Evacuees

        by socal on Mon Jan 23, 2006 at 11:03:17 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I agree... (none)
          there will be no public backlash if there is a filibuster.

          I can't imagine why the Dems would not filibuster when you consider what is at stake for all Americans.

          The grassroots have the Dems back on this and will fight it out if the Dems step up.

          Think about it:

          First amendment right to free speech - we already know that patriotic Americans who have exercised their free speech rights have had their fourth amendment rights violated.

          Fourth amendment - the patriot act will be challenged not only for the powers that it provides, but for misuse as well.

          Fifth amendment - is the US a battlefield and can anyone be picked up in the country and held without trial? Due process rights are a concern as well.

          8th amendment - do we move forward with becoming a more decent society or not?

          14th amendment - do we have a right to privacy that protects our medical choices, sexual choices, reproductive choices, marital choices, bodily integrity, expectation of privacy and does it protect these rights universally and without distinction, discrimination or bias based on gender, race, ethnicity or any other distinctive characteristic?

          Executive power - the President is currently violating the McCain amendment which limits the amount of torture that can be inflicted. Does the president have the authority under article II to defy congress?

          Executive power - The President is currently violating the FISA statute - does the President have the right to defy congress?

          What can't the President do in a time of global warfare to the people of America under article II of the constitution if he/she soly deems it necessary to protect executive branch policy and his/her national security interests?

          Is affirmative action constitutional if it includes race based consideration?

          There are other issues like anti-trust laws and the commerce clause that are important as well, but the point is we have a nominee that appears to not believe in protecting the people from the excesses of the state nor does he believe there is any cap on the presidents war fighting powers including on US soil under the Constitution.

          Everyone please keep in mind that ONLY Clearance Thomas agrees with Alito on the issue of article II power and Alito may be a little to the right of Thomas.

          Honor bound to defend freedom. Freedom is long-standing army regulations.

          by RichardG on Mon Jan 23, 2006 at 08:10:26 PM PST

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      •  I don't think so (none)
        because an answer to "extended debate" is very simple.  "How long?  Would you like 10, 20, 30, 40, 50 hours?"  And if the answer to that question is along the line that Reid gave back in 03 or 04 i.e., "that there isn't enough hours in the world" then the whole "extended debate" is exposed for what it is, a filibuster.
        •  That was what I meant by... (none)
 "impatient Frist."

          A reasonable Frist, looking to reach a sensible accommodation with the opposition, can easily reach a workable compromise.

          I have seen no sign of that Sen. Frist.

          •  As I said below (none)
            if Harry Reid suggested some sort of reasonable number of hours of debate, with 50 I think being the outer limit (that's 30 minutes per Senator), I think he would find receptive ears.  But if it's something unreasonable, like 500 hours, or 200 hours, then probably not.
        •  Link? (none)
          for that quote from Senator Reid. I can't find it on Google and I want to make sure you're not quoting him out of context. Not that you'd do that, right?

          Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought- John F. Kennedy

          by vcmvo2 on Mon Jan 23, 2006 at 11:30:49 AM PST

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          •  I will try and find it (none)
            I am doing this from memory and I am not claiming that that was a verbatim quote.  But that was teh overall gist of it and I think in fact I am pretty close to verbatim.  But if I find it I will post it.
          •  As promised (none)

            Sorry it's a cached version of a page, but that's the best I could do.  It's from Planned Parenthood, so I doubt you could raise bias.

            •  Ah but that was about Priscilla Owen (none)
              in 2004 and Reid was Minority Whip not the leader and what he said when Repubs offered limited debate on Owens before a much vaunted "up or down vote", Reid said in relation to the offer of limited hours that there "is not a number [of hours] in the universe that would be sufficient".

              You took it out of context Reid was referring to repub offer of limited hours, he didn't want to limit debate. And this was Priscilla Owens who is a nasty piece of work. She should have been debated endlessly. Reading comprehension counts for alot.

              Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought- John F. Kennedy

              by vcmvo2 on Mon Jan 23, 2006 at 01:45:17 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  How is this out of context?! (none)
                And who cares whether he was leader or whip.

                My point above was that if Reid said we want extended debate of XX hours, with a vote at the end he would probably be accomodated or at least met half-way.  But if he said something along the lives of "not enough hours in the universe" then everyone would know that the "extended debate" would really be a filibuster.

                •  Because he was responding to an offer of X hours (none)
                  That was his answer. It wasn't just blather to sound like a tough guy or heaven forbid an "obstructionist". That was then (2004) now I doubt Frist is offering any debate, just the silly "up or down vote". It's silly and shortsighted, because believe what you will, the Rethugs will not always be in the majority... After all this is rank hypocrisy after all the filibustering they did of Clinton's judges and he didnt try to bully the Senate into no debate!

                  Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought- John F. Kennedy

                  by vcmvo2 on Mon Jan 23, 2006 at 06:26:53 PM PST

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                  •  Of course there will be debate (none)
                    There was on Roberts who was relatively speaking non-controversial.  There was on Ginsburg, and there will be on Alito.  The question is how many hours do Dems want.  If its reasonable, I am sure there will be an accomodation.  If not, expect nuclear winter.
                    •  See this is what I'm talking about (none)


                      expect nuclear winter

                      Why do you repubs always threaten? Nuclear winter what a grim image! And you propose the nuclear option as a viable response to a possible filibuster! I'll remind you again the rethugs will not always be the majority & then your depraved party will be freezing their asses off in the nuclear winter they created. This is Rovian tactics at their worst.

                      Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought- John F. Kennedy

                      by vcmvo2 on Tue Jan 24, 2006 at 07:05:52 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Oh I know (none)
                        I am not a fan of nuclear option.  But neither am I a fan of the filibuster.  Ideally, there should be a debate with sufficient number of hours for everyone to get their views out (and even for Tom Coburn to cry and Joe Biden to put on his Princeton hat on :)).  Whatever that takes.  50-70 hours, I am sure a sompromise on that could and should be reached.

                        OTOH, I want to see Alito on and SOC off the Court.  So, if a compromise cannot be reached, then I think more extreme measures will come about.

                        As an aside, i wasn't "threatening."  I was merely prognosticating what would happen should there be a real filibuster.

                        •  But you support its use (none)
                          implicitly in the fact that if they filibuster Frist will go "nuclear." We all know it and Frist is dying to show the radical right just how tough he can be. Remember that Frist wants to run for President and for that he needs to shore up the base. Roberts deserved to be voted in- no doubt he's too conservative but I couldn't fault either his resume or his judicial temperament. So no filibuster. But Sam Alito is too radical with his expanded view of executive power. That's just one reason that I don't care for him. And I am aware of the ABA's finding on him...I think he should be filibustered. Will the Dems do it? I don't know. We'll see.

                          And as to threatening you should be careful of the repub tendency to throw around the tough talk- nuclear winter, I would argue is a threatening image.

                          Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought- John F. Kennedy

                          by vcmvo2 on Tue Jan 24, 2006 at 08:16:51 AM PST

                          [ Parent ]

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