Today, Chris Dodd responded to my email. His response has made me think.
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I believe this is a moral cause that the Democratic Party needs to embrace, because it speaks directly to protecting the civil liberties of all Americans. I have no confidence that Mr. Gonzales can protect my civil liberties when he has created legal justifications for the abuse of prisoners. The Attorney General is supposed to be the advocate of the people, not the President.
This is an excerpt from Senator Dodd's response to me, which I received today:
Mr. Gonzales's nomination is expected to come before the Senate Judiciary Committee, of which I am not a member, at the start of the 109th Congress in January 2005. Please be assured that I will keep your views in mind if and when his nomination comes before the full Senate for consideration.
Honestly, I hadn't really looked at it this way before: that even someone whose views you may find morally wrong should still be confirmed to serve because they are technically competent to hold the job, and because the President, who will ultimately be their boss, has said that he wants this particular qualified person to fill an empty position.
So, now I'm rethinking my views on this subject. As one of the main motifs of dKos is reforming the Democratic Party, here's my question to y'all: is giving Bush a "pass" on his nominees wise politics, the way things just get done in Washington, or is it merely caving into a President who has the gall to declare that winning by a margin of under 3% of the popular vote is a "mandate"?
I'd like to hear everyone's views on this subject and get a good discussion going, as I also plan on emailing this link to Senator Dodd's office, and possibly to other Democrats who sit on the Judiciary Committee, so that they can see what progressive Democrats out there feel about issues like Gonzales's nomination.
Please chime in, and please encourage all of your online friends and family to do the same so that when I email Senator Dodd again I can use some of your comments.
An additional note: I am not leaving a box to check "unsure" in this poll, because I want be able to convey to the Senator how you would vote if you were a member of the Senate.