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By 58-42, the Senate voted to confirm Samuel Alito.

From what I can gather, the only Senators to cross Party lines were Ben Nelson, Tim Johnson, Robert Byrd and Kent Conrad, who voted Yes for Alito, and Chafee, who voted No.

Does today's vote matter? Some.

A couple of No votes to consider - Joe Lieberman, a member of the Gang of 14.

Mary Landrieu, who expects that the Baker bill will now be taken up immediately.

One last Open Thread on this.

Tomorrow, the Bush illegal domestic surveillance scheme comes front and center. We'll see what the folks who thought discussing Alito was too much of a bother have to say about the theory of Bush as King.

Originally posted to Daily Kos on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:37 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

    •  Time to replace... (none)
      Ben Nelson, Tim Johnson, Robert Byrd and Kent Conrad with Democrats who have spines.

      Stay strong!

      "No self-respecting woman should wish or work for the success of a Party that ignores her sex." -- Susan B. Anthony

      by Yellow Dog Dem Woman on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:48:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Time to replace ... (3.88)
        ... the full slate of Republicans with Democrats.

        Then we can worry abou the rest.

        •  Snowe and Collins (4.00)
          You think Maine wants to overturn Roe v. Wade? This has to be used against the "Maine Street" Republicans.

          2006 Dem predictions: +2 Senate, +7 House, +5 Governorships, +2 State Legislatures

          by XStryker on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:59:35 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Snowe is (4.00)
            up for re-election this year.  We have got to find someone strong enough to run against her.  What is Bill in Portland Maine up to?  I will work very hard for whom ever runs against Snowe.

            I need a miracle everyday...Grateful Dead

            by kjo on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:35:12 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  There are two Dems (none)
              vying to go up against Snowe. Neither well known and very long odds but they could hold her accountable. Here's Snowwe's quote with remarks by me:

              If this is an accurate quote, how interesting:
                   "While I have not made any decision on an up-or-down vote on the
              nominee itself,**itself? Did she just call Alito an it??? And how
              about the I haven;t made up my mind???..what else do you need Senator
              or can;t you bring yourself to say the words Rowe V Wade?? *
              *

                I find it regrettable that there are those who are trying to resurrect
              a filibuster even as there is clearly nothing in the record that
              constitutes extraordinary circumstances," the senator said in a
              statement issued by her office at midday..  ** Nothing? I suppose
              the Constitution, balance of power is nothing much anymore. As for a
              filibuster..that's what Senators do in desperation when they have been
              summarily dismissed. *
              "This unfortunate effort only serves to further
              politicize and polarize this process *
              **not something the Rovian
              machine you are complicit with is familiar with, eh?. This nominee was
              a deliberate polarizing choice..it's called a set up but we, the
              people, are fighting back.

              "Words will not ever be able to express my sorrow and my profound regret for all my actions and mistakes," Jack (cry me a river) Abramoff

              by philinmaine on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 10:12:39 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  trying to give Snowe a run for her money (none)
              is this lady, Jean Hay Bright.

              http://www.jeanhaybright.us/

              Apparently little money and little support from the DNC or anyone int he party for that matter. She seems a voice crying in the wilderness

              Snowe is firmly encsconced in Maine politics. She claims to be a moderate, along with Collins who were pro-choice and would stand up for women.

              Well, it looks like both them are talking out of their Republican pie holes, since they voted for Alito--an enemy of women's right to privacy,

              Still, there is little challenge to this turncoat, opportunist Snowe, that is well funded and would have at the least, a chance to overthrow Snowe

              •  Thanks (none)
                I have sent an e-mail to Jean and hope to connect with her in the next couple of weeks.  Meanwhile I will do some research on her and possibly volunteer for her campaign.  Do you know who the other Dem is?  I am quite anxious to rid my state of a traitor to the constitution.

                I need a miracle everyday...Grateful Dead

                by kjo on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 11:37:51 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

            •  It's not easy (none)
              Snowe won her last election with 69% of the votes, even though this is a generally blue state.

              I'm really, really disgusted with both of them, but I doubt that this vote will enough to overcome the power of incumbency and money.

              •  yeah, but (none)
                that was before alito.  and as for this "no extraordinary circumstances" rubbish, homegirl needs to pull her head out of its crevice - since when is it not "extraordinary" for the president to consult with members of the religious right in deciding judicial nominations?

                hey hey
                ho ho
                snowe and joe
                have got to go!

                weather forecast

                The palaces of kings are built upon the ruins of the bowers of paradise. - Paine

                by Cedwyn on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 01:54:20 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

      •  matters not (4.00)
        The cloture vote is what mattered, today is just spitting in the wind.
          •  Thomas was confirmed by worse numbers: 53-47 (none)
            And that was with everyone voting.  If you can't get more than 60 votes in confirmation, it's a clear signal that the Senate had issues with you. Which explains why Clarence keeps a low profile, because the GOP has something on his ass to keep him from turning into David Souter.

            David Brock, who wrote "Blinded by the Right" basically nailed it when he said that the GOP knew that Clarence Thomas as a closet porn freak and did subject Anita Hill to sexual harassment; but the GOP spin machine, running off the ghost of Lee Atwater, made Anita Hill look like a spurned lover, and Clarence like a saint.

            Years after Thomas was confirmed, a video store owner in DC came forward with the proof that Clarence rented and filmed porn because he had documentation of video equipment rentals and stuff like that. But, he was already confirmed...

            "Corruption is the disease; Accountability is the cure."

            by The Truth on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 10:29:04 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Just To Clarify (3.40)
              So the party that favors the Right To Privacy favors snooping into people's video rentals & believes that renting X-rated material is disqualifying for judicial nominees? Should the Senate also subpoena a nominee's library records?

              I don't think these allegations were ever pinned down, but rejecting a nominee on that basis would be a heck of a precedent.

              •  you'll remember that Bork (none)
                they actually did bring forth his video rental history-not porn, but hard "R" rated stuff.

                If there is anything I have learned from Scooby Doo, it is that the only thing to fear is crooked real estate developers.

                by JakeC on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 01:31:31 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Don't Think That's Correct (none)
                  My recollection is that Bork's video rental history was pretty tame stuff, such as Hollywood oldies from the 1940s & 50s - no porn. At least that's what came out during the confirmation hearing, can't vouch for his current viewing.
                  •  I couldn't find a readily available link (none)
                    But, I really do seem to recall this- it's the "Hard R" phrase that stuck with me.

                    If there is anything I have learned from Scooby Doo, it is that the only thing to fear is crooked real estate developers.

                    by JakeC on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 05:46:08 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

            •  Second worst confirmation vote (none)
              Thomas at 52-48 (per the Senate site) was the worst.  This is only the second time a Supreme Court judge was confirmed with at least 40 no votes.  Lots have been denied but usually judges who are confirmed do so clearly.

              The relevant time period is about 90 years.  Since 1912 there have been at least 96 senators (100 for the last 45 years).  Tghis is not much of a victory.

              •  Huge victory isn't required. (none)
                Alito is on the court, for the rest of his life or until he decides to leave.  The level of opposition is now irrelevant because there is no way to reverse course (which there would be in cases of a piece of legistlation or an appointment/election that was not a lifetime term).  
            •  Vichy Democrats (none)
              And that was with eleven Democrats helping out the cause.

              If you saw the hearings at all and were around for the news coverage, it didn't take a very fine filter to sense that he was bad news.  The fact the Dems supported him then, is just like the cloture vote yesterday---a true view into the soul of our party.

              I'm a Centrist. I only vote with the Republicans when it really screws the people.

              by bwide on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 02:42:20 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

        •  What mattered ... (none)
          ... was the Democrats having control of the Senate.  What mattered was the votes of Republicans like Olympia Snowe, Susan Collins, Arlen Specter, etc.  Why aren't Democrats just as angry at them, who did absolutely nothing in their power to prevent this nominee from serving on the Supreme Court?  Why does a nominee have to be defeated by a filibuster?

          Today, the Court purports to be the dispassionate oracle of the law, unmoved by "natural sympathy." - Justice Blackmun, dissenting, DeShaney v. Winnebago County

          by jim bow on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:34:54 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  the other woman (4.00)
            It's always misplaced to blame the other woman. Sure, Specter, Snow, Collins all caved on reproductive rights, and they should be held accountable to their constituants for their votes.

            The overarching issue is expansion of executive power and the erosion of civil liberties. And even with this administration's track record, the opposition party couldn't find the will to use the only tool available to them, if for no other reason than to continue floor debate.  That's why Democrats are angry with Democrats, and should hold them accountable for their votes.

            This is not politics as usual. It's well past time to take a stand, and yet we have members actively assisting the liars, the thieves and the murderers. Fuck what their constituants want, their country needs or the Constitution demands, they'd rather appear moderate.  Tell me, what is the moderate stand on torture? Indefinate detention? Habeas corpus? Unitary executive power? Perpetual war? Illegal spying? Huh?

            •  Excuse me? (none)
              Is the power to vote against a nominee not a tool the minority has?  I must have missed something.  

              Most Supreme Court nominees are overwhelmingly confirmed.  Justice Ginsburg was confirmed, 96-3.  Justice Breyer was confirmed, 89-9.  Justice Souter was confirmed, 90-9.  Justices Kennedy and Stevens were confirmed, 98-0.  Justice O'Connor was confirmed, 99-0.  Justice Blackmun was confirmed, 94-0.  Justice Thurgood Marshall was confirmed, 69-11.  Even William Rehnquist, a polarizing figure in the Nixon Justice Department, was confirmed to be an Associate Justice, 72-26, in 1972.  It's very rare that Supreme Court Justices aren't overwhelmingly confirmed.  This link supports the assumption.  So Democrats should take comfort that they garnered over 40 votes against this nominee.

              Today, the Court purports to be the dispassionate oracle of the law, unmoved by "natural sympathy." - Justice Blackmun, dissenting, DeShaney v. Winnebago County

              by jim bow on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 10:35:18 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Even Scalia... (none)
                ...was confirmed unanimously.  What does that say?

                The last time people listened to a talking bush, they wandered 40 years in the desert.

                by DC Pol Sci on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 11:11:00 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  It says that ... (none)
                  ... Democrats saved their fire for William Rehnquist, whose elevation to Chief Justice was simultaneously considered with Justice Scalia's nomination to be an Associate Justice.

                  Today, the Court purports to be the dispassionate oracle of the law, unmoved by "natural sympathy." - Justice Blackmun, dissenting, DeShaney v. Winnebago County

                  by jim bow on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 11:14:57 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

              •  say what now? (none)
                Where in "advice and consent" do you read that most nominees should be confirmed?  Doesn't that make "advice and consent" irrelevant? I'm going by the Constitution, not some fictional, and redundant standard such as "up or down vote".

                Why should anyone take comfort in the votes against the nominee?  THE vote was cloture period.  What opposition do you have to continuing floor debate?

                Votes against the nominee don't mean jack when the court decides that the executive branch has unitary power to decide which laws or treaties or rights to abide and which to ignore. Take comfort my ass. That'll do the rule of law, the seperation of powers and privacy rights a shitload of good.

                Go ahead and tell all of the families of innocent victims of this administration's bind, torture and kill policies to take comfort in the fact that half of the Senate Democrats crapped all over their advice and consent duties because they found Senate procedure too "icky" for their delicate sensibilities.  Let's build memorials to the glorious precident of Abu Ghraib and Gitmo instead, shall we?

                And while we're at it, let's spy on Americans without oversight, and if the President says my neighbor's a terrorist, he must be right, you trust him, don't you? Sure beats the hell out of Senate procedure, doesn't it?

              •  No... (none)
                So Democrats should take comfort that they garnered over 40 votes against this nominee.

                We garnered 25 votes in the count that really mattered.  The vote today was nothing more than a dog and pony show.

                There is no comfort in the fact that 19 Dems stabbed us all in the backs yesterday.  There is no comfort that we now have a hard right-wing ideologue that will sit on the Court for the next 30 years.

                Those who voted "no" today but refused to vote "no" on cloture yesterday are spineless hypocrites.

                40 no votes today?  You can claim that as a "victory" if you want, but it's a pretty hollow fucking victory.

                •  Did it ever occur to you ... (none)
                  ... that the cloture issue is more complex than the "upperdown" vote issue?  Some Democrats, such as Sen. Harkin (who strongly opposed the Alito nomination and who paired with absent Sen. Ensign on the cloture vote) for example, oppose the use of the filibuster in principle.  After all, liberals have historically opposed the filibuster.  Americans for Democratic Action policy resolution # 223 calls for ending the filibuster.  This is one reason some Democrats supported the cloture vote.  There are I'm sure many others.

                  I'm really sick and tired of Kossacks screaming, "WE NEEDED TO FILIBUSTER THIS NOMINEE BECAUSE WE NEEDED TO FILIBUSTER THIS NOMINEE."  I'm not saying I necessarily opposed the filibuster, but Kossacks need to do better than this.  We need to act like grown-ups.

                  Today, the Court purports to be the dispassionate oracle of the law, unmoved by "natural sympathy." - Justice Blackmun, dissenting, DeShaney v. Winnebago County

                  by jim bow on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 11:30:21 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Did You Ever Stop to Think... (4.00)
                    ... that many of us are not knee-jerk reactionaries?  That maybe many of us have very logical and valid reasoning for calling on Alito's filibuster?  Did you?  I doubt it.

                    Samuel Alito is a very real danger, a very real threat to our civil liberties, women's rights, worker's rights, our right to privacy and on and on and on and on... He poses a very serious risk to our very Constitution with his support of the theory of a unitary executive.

                    The filibuster is a weapon in our arsenal but too many Dems are too timid to use it.  Either that or they really don't give a shit about this country or their constituents.

                    This was a time for the Democratic party to stand up, in unison and say no.  This was a time for the Democratic party to finally come together and fight for the people of this country.  And yet 19 of them didn't have the spine to do so.

                    •  this was atime to fight for the people (2.50)
                      Did it ever occur to anyone on this page that the majority of the people in this contry wanted a conservative supreme court justice. did anyone on this page stop and relect on why obama stated that the democratic party relys to heavily on procedural matters to thawrt the will of the majority which controls the house, the senate, the presidency? i don't know who you are fighting for but its not for the sixty three million that voted for george bush and elected him twice. And did anyone ever stop to think that if by some miracle the democrats ever regain control of the senate and or presidency that you have so poisioned the supreme court process that it will be virtually impossible for a liberal nominee ever to be confirmed? the constant use of procedual manevuers that obama refers to will come back to haunt and you will pay a very heavy price in the future for your useless obstructionism.One final point. it is a very real possibility that bush will get a third nominee to the court who cares then if you win the senate or presidencey it will be a very hollow victory.
                      •  Shut the fuck up (none)
                        And drag your ass back to Freeperland, troll...

                        Oh... and you might want to consider learning how to spell.  Give Hooked on Phonics a try...

                      •  I see your procedure & I raise obstructionism (none)
                        I can say this, becasue I live in Dreier's district.  The Rules Committe has manipulated every trick in the book.  They control the agenda, they control whether committes will take comment.  The Rules Committe has sewn up normal discourse in the House.  Newt Gingrich's  "Compact with America" was an outsiders cry that the Dems were using procedure against the Minority.  Well, now that the GOP controls the Rules committee,  the Dems are completely shut out.

                        When Rush Limbaugh says that the Dems are reduced to Procedure and Obstruction-- which he did-- you know that the OPPOSITE is true.

                        pfooey on Procedure and Obstruction

                        "With Liberty and Justice for All"

                        by ohshenandoah on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 03:56:32 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                  •  The Dems haven't filibustered crap... (none)
                    ...while the Republicans went after everything Clinton did.  There have to be times where more than a simple majority is needed.  There have to be times where something extreme can be done to get rid of a crappy nominee or bill.  If something can't get some cross-aisle support, it is junk and should not move forward.  Alito was junk, and the Dems folded.  They let Roberts sail through to save the big guns for a more important fight.  It will be interesting to see what that fight is.

                    I'm a Centrist. I only vote with the Republicans when it really screws the people.

                    by bwide on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 02:49:23 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                •  Yeah, I'm (none)
                  not real happy about Alito either.  Much of the anger has been thrown at the 19 Dems who voted for cloture instead of continuing the debate for a few more weeks.  Many people are even saying they should be tossed out of the Senate and out of the party, as if they had voted against impeachment for Bush.  I think this anger and criticism is being aimed at the wrong targets.  It's not the 19 Dems that allowed Alito to get to the Senate floor and ultimately on the Supreme Court.  What allowed Bush to win on Alito, and to win on many other things of importance in the past 5 years, has been the abyssmal performance of the Democratic party in recent years, beginning in 2000 when this circus could have been stopped before it was even started.  
                  While Al Gore is the darling of the blogs here in 2006, he was a stiff Washington-insider who couldn't spell the word CHARISMA in 2000.  While everyone will say the election was stolen from him, the election really shouldn't have been that close. His lacking political skills that year showed when he:

                  1)chose Lieberman as his VP instead of someone from the midwest that would have added to the ticket like Evan Bayh, Tom Vilsack, or Bill Richardson.  And yet he still lost New Hampshire with Lieberman on the ticket.  
                  2)ran away from the Clinton administration's record.  While he should have shown disapproval in Clinton for the Monica stuff, he should have grasped onto the 28 mil. jobs created, 4% unemployment, balanced budget, and lowered national debt.
                  3)didn't campaign with Clinton in Arkansas
                  (a state that loves Clinton) or Louisiana (a state that has twice as many registered Dems than Reps).  Those 3/4 electoral votes in Ark. would have won him the election.

                  Then there was the inaction of the Dems in 2002 allowing Rove to characterize them as soft on national security without a word in protest.  Goodbye senate majority.

                  Which brings me to Kerry and 2004, a election that should have been a beatdown like Carter/Reagan 1980, but instead was national security President vs. anti-war radical, a la Nixon/McGovern 1972.  Kerry, who won 5 medals in Vietnam, allowed himself to be characterized as a security wimp who, according to the Swift Boat Vets, fought alongside the VietCong and ate American babies.  He also showed his political genius by having three positions on Iraq and choosing John Edwards as his VP candidate, a one-term senator who added nothing but a smile to the ticket.  Also his strategy of campaiging in only 18 states and trying to win 16 of them was absolutely brilliant.  This along with the fact that the Dem Party supplied no decent candidate in the open Senate seats in the South previously held by retiring Dems.  

                  So while we could have had either Gore or Kerry as president, a slight majority in Congress, and 3 new Supreme Court justices to be proud of(assuming Stevens would have retired in Gore's 1st term), we instead have a Radical Right govt that has almost unlimited power.  In the end, throwing out 19 Democratic Senators from red/purple states isn't the answer needed to slow the rightward tilt of the Supreme Court.  

                  ???/Richardson '08 Who's going to head my ticket?

                  by DemBrock on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 11:53:33 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  You're Right (none)
                    and you're wrong.  I won't dispute the dismal performances of the Democratic party in the past 5 years.  It's been nothing short of horrific.

                    But I think many of us saw this vote on Alito as a watershed moment.  This was the time to assert ourselves as a party, this was a time to stand up to this brutal Administration and this was the time for this party to show some backbone.  And 25 Democrats did just that.  The 19 who voted for Cloture, I feel, have betrayed us.  The simple fact is that we didn't win in either 2000 or in 2004.  We don't have the majority in either chamber.  So we have to play the hand we have and we have to fight our way back.  When Kerry and Kennedy led the charge, it was imperative for the rest of the party to fall into line.  The 19 who voted for Cloture have betrayed the values and beliefs of the American public.  The 19 who voted for Cloture have betrayed the very principles of this country by allowing Alito on the court.

                    I understand what you are saying, but I can't agree with it all.

      •  Show me some candidates and we'll talk (none)
        But until then, I'm not going to call for the heads of senators from Nebraska, South Dakota, West Virginia, and North Dakota respectively.

        "Politics isn't about big money or power games; it's about the improvement of people's lives" - Paul Wellstone

        by Wobegon Boy on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:53:36 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Because finding democrats (none)
        who aren't going to be as or more conservative than Nelson, Johnson, and Conrad in Nebraska, South Dakota, and North Dakota....and who can actually win in those states is going to happen...
      •  Time to Replace the Democrats (3.00)
        ...with a real opposition party.

        Preserving the old ways from being abused/Protecting the new ways for me and for you/What more can we do?

        by GreenSooner on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:55:11 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Small miracles (none)
        I think there needs to be just a little sympathy for the Dakota senators and Ben Nelson in Nebraska.

        You have to ask yourself whether it's better to have them in the Senate as Dems, even with the difficult voting choices they face, or quickly run out of the Senate and replaced by a GOPer to appease liberals who can't form a majority base for them.

        •  to a point (none)
          The problem is Democrats in the Senate are vitally important but they have to vote with the Democrats on Key issues. I call this Alito confirmation and the Cloture Vote a huge key issue.

          Democrats need to join forces with other Democrats in the House and Senate to be worthy of being called Democrats. If the Republicans stick together as evidenced today....even some from very blue states voted Yes except Chaffee....then why cannot Democrats?

          Carry the battle to them. Don't let them bring it to you. Put them on the defensive and don't ever apologize for anything. - Harry S. Truman

          by wishingwell on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:59:14 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  I have to ask myself (4.00)
          if one vote against one Supreme Court nominee would cost any of them their seats. I don't think so.  Lincoln Chafee wasn't afraid to cross party lines.

          "No self-respecting woman should wish or work for the success of a Party that ignores her sex." -- Susan B. Anthony

          by Yellow Dog Dem Woman on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:04:35 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Look at Tom Daschle (none)
            He led the opposition against Bush's federal judge appointments and now he's on the outside considering a presidental run instead of leading the fight against Alito.

            ???/Richardson '08 Who's going to head my ticket?

            by DemBrock on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 11:57:53 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  What happened to Tom Daschle (none)
              was a repug hit.  He held a prominent position in the Senate and the campaign against him by the repugs was unprecedented (hitman Frist was out there gunning him).  What happened to Tom Daschle was not because he voted "no" on one judge.

              "No self-respecting woman should wish or work for the success of a Party that ignores her sex." -- Susan B. Anthony

              by Yellow Dog Dem Woman on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 01:46:23 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

        •  My issue is not even with Ben Nelson's vote (4.00)
          My issue is with him going on Hannity ever couple of weeks and pissing all over his fellow Democrats.  He is in a very conservative state, and I understand that. But it is NOT forgivable that Hannity uses him every single day to point out what a "sane" Democrat looks like, as opposed to "crazy" ones such as Kerry, Kennedy, Durbin and Feingold.  

          He plays right into their hands just to get some radio or TV time. Whore.

          Republicans to Americans: "Are there no prisons?...And the Union workhouses?...Are they still in operation?"

          by adigal on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:40:52 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  OK, I said 'a little sympathy' n/t (none)
      •  You'll get GOPers in those states... (none)
        I travel out there A LOT... Nebraska, So Dak, No Dak... they are rock solid red. When Nelson, Johnson & Conrad step down expect to see very conservative GOP senators in their place.

        I don't get to W Va much - but hear from others that do that the same applies there. Solidly red.

        These are four likely GOP pick ups when the 'time comes'. Unless we take out some other GOP senators they could produce a fillibuster proof majority.

        It sucks but the battle place is the 'hearts & minds' then the ballot box' and out there the right owns it.

        •  WV (4.00)
          West Virginia is more mixed, they voted for Clinton and have a bit of a moderate liberal in Rockefeller. They have a Dem governor and are pretty competetive. Byrd is sincerely a centrist. He a smart man and a brilliant parliamentarian, but he's no liberal and he was dead wrong on this matter. He pisses me off more than do the other three "yes" dems, but far less than the cowards in blue and violet states who voted "no" on Alito but "yes" on cloture.
          •  ND has four statewide Dems in Office (none)
            Four!

            Two US senators, the at-large US House seat, and the ag commissioner, I believe.   Every other statewide office is held by a Republican (and there are a lot of them).  The House and Senate are 70% Republican.  There is no bench.  It is a miracle that ND's entire congressional delegation is Democratic.  A miracle.

            I'm not pleased with Conrad's vote here, but consider that he's up for re-election and his vote didn't count anyway.

            •  House too? (none)
              I didn't know the house seat or the ag commissioner were Democratically held. I knew about the Senators, but I find them to be rather purplish, typical red-state Democrats, though I do like Dorgan with his strong populist streak.

              Still, the huge presidential margins and the centrist tone of the senators tells me that ND is not a place where we can expect progressive Democrats to succeed.

          •  Byrd comes from... (none)
            an era of bipartisanship and consensus.  He's been in the Congress since 1953.  He's from the era where if you cross party lines or disagree with the president of your own party (which he did over the line item veto with Clinton) its not a sin against you.  Hard to teach an old dog new tricks.

            ???/Richardson '08 Who's going to head my ticket?

            by DemBrock on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 12:04:26 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  That isn't true at all. (none)
          Nebraska has had one Democratic senator for most of my life, as well as Democratic governors and creadible Democratic candidates who lost by two or four points.  The current problem is not that a Democrat can't win a seat, the problem (widespread throughout the midwest) is that the state has been written off as unwinnable at the presidential level (probably true) and so no energy has gone into grooming and funding Democratic candidates.  Consequently, the bench of candidates capable of winning is just not that deep.  Quite frankly, the heir to Nelson's seat could quite possible be a conservative Democrat (assuming one is mentored and groomed in time).  However, despite being conervative, the will almost certainly be  a) a better politician and b) much smarter than Nelson, who tends to be a dim bulb who isn't great at retail politics.  
      •  Incomplete list (none)
        Get the list of Yes vote democrats from the cloture vote from yesterday that is the complete list.
    •  Stop calling it (none)
      domestic surveillance. What it is is "electronic home invasion."

      Forget "GOD, GUNS, GAYS, GIRLS & GETS"

      by hannah on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 10:03:19 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  This is what happens (4.00)
    ..when an apathetic populace allows asshats to be elected.  This transcends party boundaries, because with all due respect, mainstream American can't really tell much difference between Democrats and Republicans.  Obviously things will have to get worse before they'll get better.
    •  That may be the case (3.66)
      but i think it's more of the media's fault for felling that they have to be "fair and balanced" than because of the distance between the policies of the two parties.
    •  Everyone was distracted (4.00)
      by the Oprah vs. Frey scandal I guess.

      "The delusional is no longer marginal..." --Bill Moyers

      by queen crab on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:44:16 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  TDS had a great bit on this last night (3.88)
        Stewart kept flipping back and forth between "Oprah's World," where "lying has consequences" and "the Real World," where lying doesn't have consequences.  So cut between Oprah sternly telling Frey, "That's not an idea, James, that's a lie," and Rummy laughing and saying "Gee willikers" when asked if the Administration was lying about WMD.

        Punchline:  "I want to be in Oprah's World."

        Sometimes you cover your ass with the lame excuses you have, instead of the lame excuses you wish you had. (-3.00, -5.49)

        by litigatormom on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:49:25 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  I mean who can think when (3.80)
        that poor blond woman is still missing in Aruba!
        Geez, the Superbowl game is coming up too.
        And I can't wait for American Idol tonight....who's Alito again?
        •  Way too accurate (4.00)
          I think most of us here (I know this applies to me) have difficulty fathoming the vastness of the ignorance of the American people who rely on TV news for their information.  Occasionally, I'll mention a detail of a story I've been following on KOS or another blog, and SWMBO will look at me as if I have lobsters coming out of my ears.  I'd honestly like to see a national poll to see what percentage of the populace actually have ever heard of Samuel Alito.
    •  DOES the DLC want us to win? (none)
      while watching the fight over Alito ensue I was struck by the lack of conviction displayed by some members of the Democratic party and then it hit me.....the DLC doesnt want us to retake either congressional house this year....they want things to continue on a downward turn until its obvious to everyone in our country that control of government has to be taken away from republicans.

      your comment 'things have to get a whole lot worse..." is exactly how i think the DLC see's the upcoming election and the chance for a BLUE revolution.

      I think there is a faction in our own party that is secretly hoping for another mid term defeat for us JUST so they have an easier time of it in the 08 elections.

      I seriously hope in my heart that I am wrong but while my heart clings to hope my head tells me different.

      Is the DLC wing of the Democratic party covertly working to keep us a minority until 08 and if so why?

      "if all the world's a stage, who is sitting in the audience?"

      by KnotIookin on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:47:47 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Refuge From Defeat (none)
        Hello, buballa!  Seeking refuge after yet another defeat amongst like-minded idiots, I see.

        What's the matter, darlin?  Don't you like to read opposing viewpoints after yet another disasterous defeat for the lib faction of the Dem party?

        Hey, kos....you're a snot-nosed little punk with a small following of moronic dittoheads.  Congratulations.

    •  elected - not (none)
      There is ample evidence that Ohio was stolen in 2004 and Florida was stolen in 2000.

      This is not to say that Gore and Kerry shouldn"t have had wider margins that would have allowed them to win even with a stolen state

      Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable. - John F. Kennedy

      by jpeskoff on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:50:05 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Totally agree (none)
        Both elections were stolen . . . that's the big issue.
        •  And that's why . . . (none)
          And that's why we have to concentrate on election "reform" as diligently as we focus on finding good candidates.  We should be forming coalitions with the various groups pushing for open and fair voting.

          The Repubs have shown us a wide range of their tricks: too few voting machines in Dem precincts; the ever-hackable Diebold; intimidation of minority (and Native American) voters; phony flyers; push-polling; phone jamming.  

          I'm sure they'll have some new wares to trot out in '06, but for now we ought to compile a "hit list" of which tactics they used in which precints and get out ahead of the game.

          Good candidates can't win if the votes are stolen and the voters intimidated.

  •  Wow (none)
    surprise, surprise, my least favorite Democratic Senator voted NO.

    Congrats Landrieu on doing something right.

    •  Right...Congratulate Her (none)
      ...because that whole "voting for it before voting against it thing" always works out so very well for Democrats.

      She's a case study in cognitive dissonance, wanting the Gulf Coast oil industry to generate as much economic activity as possible on the one hand, while tapdancing around the leading role it plays in driving the global climate change that is likely to result in a new round of floods in New Orleans during the 2006 hurricane season, before the necessary repair work on the levees can even get moving.

      Bob Byrd, John Dingell and a host of other Democrats present precisely the same problem and prevent any effective or adequate response to the deepening crisis.

  •  So. (none)
    Back to the wiretapping, double-quick.

    Good fight, all.  Let's get ready to throw down for the next one.

  •  I said this once in the Open Thread (4.00)
    but reproductive rights were nice while they lasted.  Anyone seen my red dress and headcovering?

    "Violence is the last refuge of the incompetent."

    by ssundstoel on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:39:07 AM PST

    •  Just remember (none)
      to bring popcorn to the Salvagings.  
    •  still 5 vote for Roe (none)
      so it wont be overturned...yet

      However, there is the danger that the court will allow quite a few more restrictions, unless Kennedy stiffens up in that area.

      •  are you a betting man? (none)
        Care to take the odds on that gamble?
      •  A couple ao state legislatures (none)
        seem to be willing to put that to the test.
      •  Dobson Dems foster a Dobson Democracy (4.00)
        In 2000 Bush 'promised' not to overturn Roe. After five years of concerted religious extremist activism, women are now being denied access even to sound medical information on all aspects of reproductive health. They are being subject to delayed treatment of cancers and STD.
        .
        Emergency contraception is being withheld and even routine birth control prescriptions are being limited by 'moral values'.
        .
        You might see this as a political boost, or as not being bad because scAlito isn't the deciding vote. But the Bush era rate of death and disease among women and infant mortality that have increased under religious extremism relating to women's medical privacy may now go on for decades.
        .
        You might think differently if treatment of men's cancers was being delayed, withheld and distorted to pursue a medieval agenda punishing men for being sexually active.
        .
    •  Reproductive rights (4.00)
      As I said in a previous thread, wealthy Republicans still and always will have them.

      "The delusional is no longer marginal..." --Bill Moyers

      by queen crab on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:46:07 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Have we gotten Stevens (4.00)
      a food taster yet?

      Sometimes you cover your ass with the lame excuses you have, instead of the lame excuses you wish you had. (-3.00, -5.49)

      by litigatormom on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:50:23 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  ok, lets remember... (none)
      1. if we are all a little more responsible before sex, having to have an abortion is not an issue. agree or disagree with pro-choice, having to make that decision is still tough if it happens to you.

      2. as there are many lining up to flame me for my #1 statement, less than 6% of all abortions are because of health risk to the mother, rape or incest. these facts are freely available on the web.

      3. pro-choice is out of the barn. the gop will never bring it back, i dont care if bork, janice rogers brown and rev. fallwell make the SCOTUS. it aint going to happen. you can continue to fight that if you want, but time would be better spent stopping oil production in ANWR or telling your rep. to get the US out of iraq.
      •  Hey, let's fire the Stork too! (4.00)
        if we are all a little more responsible before sex

        There's always that trick of spinning the earth backward to turn back the clock. Oh, and getting the government not to bury sound advice on contraception and preventing STDs being done to promote an ineffectual and medically dangerous Just Say NO to Sex! agenda.

        s there are many lining up to flame me for my #1 statement, less than 6% of all abortions are because of health risk to the mother, rape or incest. these facts are freely available on the web.

        You get to sit in on all the doctors' appointments, huh? That's practically creationist-leven science!
        .

        •  no,i'm just saying be responsible+its not an issue (none)
          i'm not saying no to sex. so, the government is off by 50% on the protection contraception provides ? i don't think so.

          both the numbers on effectiveness of contraception and reasons for abortion are accurate. i'm not going to go find the links again over a position that is as much going to be reversed as gambling will be made illegal.

          i'm glad abortion is here to stay, even though many here think it isnt. i'd hate to think how frenzied it would get if it wasnt settled.

          •  You're very uninformed on this (none)
            'm glad abortion is here to stay, even though many here think it isnt. i'd hate to think how frenzied it would get if it wasnt settled.

            Access to existing services has been obliterated by religious extremism. You haven't provided any links to back up your claims, and it sounds to me like you're just repeating conventional "wisdom". There's too much on the subject to link here, but dKos has had some excellent recent diaries on reproductive rights, including contraception and abortion.
            .
            I suggest you follow those tags and get up to speed on the medical realities, disturbing trends and statistical support included in those diaries.
            .

        •  Contraception vs. abortion (none)
          Did you ever wonder why sound advice on contraception is so hard to find, while abortions are readily available? Just whose idea was that?

          "Oh, and getting the government not to bury sound advice on contraception"

        •  Don't some extreme-righties (none)
          want to take the "responsible" clause out of sex too, i.e. ban condoms and pills (already often restricted?) Griswold v. Ct may be at risk if Stevens passes on...

          Like I said, the angry white male Republican base considers it "cool" for men to "get laid," so I'm not sure how they'd like it in the end.

          "You want to live in this world the way it is? No? Then do something about it!" -Celes Chere, Final Fantasy VI

          by BlueEngineerInOhio on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 05:50:08 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  OK, remember this, then. (2.33)
        Since most educated and thinking Americans cannot point to the point in the US Constitution where it is stated there is a "right" to abortion, why not send this entire issue back to the legislative branch, where it actually belongs?

        Congress passes laws, not the judiciary.  So, in order to put to rest this entire issue, send it to the legislators.

        Am I wrong here, and if so, why?

        •  Individual rights are (none)
          NOT the purview of a majority.  In a constitutional republic, individual rights, civil rights, minority rights (the number, not the groups) and NOT to be subjected EVER to the whims of ANY majority vote.  THIS is what conservatives don't get.  

          If you want that system, then we cannot have three CO-equal branches of government.  Conservatives are the most anti-American people out there when they advocate for strict majority rule.  That is what's called a "paliamentary democracy" like found in the UK and Italy.  Do ya want those systems???

          Why stop at the legislature anyway?  A TRUE majority-rules believer wouldn't surely mind if there were binding national referenda regarding EVERY possible issue out there?  

          -7.38, -6.87 The fight against Alito is the most important political fight of our time.

          by HillaryGuy on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 11:57:10 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  and still people tell (none)
        me that democrats are less sexist than republicans.  <gag>
      •  And yet, stats don't agree with you (none)
        54% of women having an abortion said they used some form of contraception during the month they became pregnant.

        I'm not sure what the color of your world is like, but there are a number of states with laws ready to go to outlaw abortion once Alito and Roberts have a case before them. While people with money can afford to go to a state that allows abortions, the poor in this world won't have that choice.
        Regardless of whether 'pro-choice is out of the barn'...whatever the hell that means.

        The GOP = The Treason Party

        by jonathan94002 on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 12:54:46 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Mary Landrieu (3.50)
    Soon to be ex-Senator Landrieu come 2008. Unless, of course, if she switches to the GOP. Which I would not put past her.
    •  I said elsewhere 2 things (none)
      One-yesterday on a diary about my Senator Mark Pryor, about how the staffers were overworked  and underpaid, and rude because of the aforementioned.

      Well according to PastPeak, these same overworked underpaid staffers had time to edit
      Wikipedia:

       January 30, 2006
      Congressional Staffers Routinely Edit Wikipedia Entries

      Two- that Landrieu was uncommitted at
      3 Central, along with Rockefeller, and
      Snowe, with 57 y's and 40 n's,
      according to CSpan's Tote Board (while
      Orrin Hatch is talking).

      A deal was made in the next 45 minutes.
      I hope it was a good one for Landrieu.

    •  Her early Katrina ass kissing alone (4.00)
      should disqualify her to represent the people of LA.  Maybe that's her challenger's campaign slogan, "Landrieu. Too busy kissing ass to save yours."

      A day late and more than a dollar short...

  •  A foregone conclusion.... (none)
    Did my heart good to at LEAST see that he didn't get 60 votes - at least some people only defected on cloture.

    That's the imitation silver lining on this cloud.

    •  Meaningless (4.00)
      It's a meaningless symbolic way to play both sides. The real vote was yesterday.
    •  Why? (4.00)
      Why was it a "pleasant" surprise?  She didn't support the filibuster, so her "no" vote is meaningless and is just as good as a vote to confirm.
      •  yeah but (none)
        I wouldn't have supported a filibuster either.
        •  Why Not? (4.00)
          Do you hate women's rights?  Do you hate civil liberties?  Do you support expanding the powers of the President while weakening Congress?  Why on earth would you not support a filibuster of this right-wing ideologue?
          •  because (none)
            1. It would have badly hurt us politically. Media would take up the GOP talking points of "Democrats are so partisan", "sour grapes", etc. etc. etc.

            2. There was not enough of a smoking gun to justify such a last resort.
            •  Wrong (4.00)
              1. Who gives a flying fuck what the media is going to portray us as.  No matter what we do, the media will portray us as partisan anyway so why not do the right thing for this country and for the American people?  Hurt us politically?  How would standing up for our country, our Constitution and our civil liberties hurt us politically?  Showing the spine to fight for the people couldn't hurt us politically.

              2. There was more than enough to justify a filibuster.  Alito is a liar and a right wing ideologue.  His rulings and his papers show that he advocates for stripping our civil liberties and weakening our Constitution.
            •  bowing to the media come on (none)
              who cares what the media say, the media guilt trip on the democrats, don't they always do this to the Dems, those who voted yes on cloture, are cowards, since when not protecting the Constitution is no big deal, and again, they (Senate) are back to business as usual. Business will never be the same, because their word will mean nothing.  Unitary executive powers, and believe me, you will hearing alot about Unitary Executive powers in the future, it will come back to haunt all those who voted for alito.
      •  Or worse than a vote to confirm, (4.00)
        I think, because she's trying to have it both ways, assuming people will give her credit for voting "no" when she didn't have the guts (or was unable to muster the enthusiasm for personal freedoms) required to do the right thing. Pathetic.

        What a bunch of cowardly, selfish, lazy bastards, whose cowardice MY children (and everyone's) will pay the price for.

        "Why should we hear about body bags, and deaths . . . I mean, it's not relevant. So why should I waste my beautiful mind on something like that?" - B. Bush

        by The New Politeness on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:52:48 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  LandROVE is a fool (none)
      and hopefully this will be her LAST term.

      "The ship be sinking." M. R. Richardson

      by hoof32 on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 10:57:53 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Why is it (4.00)
    that if we could come up with 42 votes against Alito today, we couldn't get 41 votes to filibuster yesterday? Can anyone explain that?
    •  priniple (4.00)
      that judicial nominees sholdn't be filibustered, or that only those which are clearly and obviously unqualified should be.

      One of the problems with Alito is that given the evidence we can only think or believe or have a hunch that Alito will be bad.  He never really actually said anything to prove he would be.

      •  So what do people need (none)
        as proof that a nominated justice would be bad? I thought it was obvious in this case.
        •  Because of the nature of judicial nominations (none)
          today.  It's just a fact that the nature of nominations in the current time is "you vote for them unless you have a damn good reason not to."  For many senators, especially those red state ones, having a "damn good reason to" would essentially constitute being able to nail Alito with something.  Alito preventing them from being able to do so by being evasive in his questioning, and had the defense with all the reagan memos and stuff of "that was my job"
          •  It's hard to believe (none)
            that if Alito's unfitness for the bench is so obvious to us, that other people (such as senators) couldn't see it, too.
            •  I don't think it IS obvious (none)
              It's because most people here believe that judicial nominations should be seen in a different way than how they actually are in the Senate.

              Most people here take the stand of "ok, prove that you'll uphold roe"  In the Senate it's more like "well, he didn't say he wouldn't uphold it"  Thats just the way it works.

            •  Alito (none)
              Why is he so unqualified for the bench?
              •  Because, for starters, (none)
                he does not believe in three co-equal branches of government.  He's for a steroided executive at the expense of the other two branches.  That alone is a repudiation of our Constitution and disqualifies him.  And our founders would agree.  We didn't have 200-plus years of three co-equal and separate branches of gov't for some asshole to come along and break it.

                I could go into the fact that he doesn't see individual liberties in the Constitution and takes a cave-man view on it:  if he don't see them written out EXACTLY in words he can understand (like no words longer than four letters), he doesn't see the right.  No matter that the framers couldn't have looked into a crystal ball and created a document that fit every little criteria that Alito must see.  That's why the cons like Rehnquist and now Alito will find that electronic surveillance without a warrant isn't even a "search" per the 4th Am., because eletronic surveillance isn't a physical "search" in accordance with their interpretation of the plain meaning of the word.  I can go on all day.

                -7.38, -6.87 The fight against Alito is the most important political fight of our time.

                by HillaryGuy on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 12:09:20 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

      •  Sounds like a good argument for letting the fox (none)
        into the henhouse.

        -6.88/-5.64 * You know what's happening. Fight it.

        by John West on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:45:24 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's actually a point i rather sympathize with (none)
          judicial nominees have rarely been filibustered.  Held in committee? yes, but not necessarily filibustered.  While I supported the filibuster on Alito, I can easily see why people thought it wasnt't justified, even if they were against Alito.

          A vote against a candidate and a vote against clotre are different.  You vote against a thing (or person) if you dislike it.  You vote against cloture only if you really, really dislike it.

      •  What would he say? (none)
        I thought he said more then enough. His evasive, vague answers along with his record screamed the "wrong" things.

        When you want to see if a judge with such a long record of decisions is in or out of the mainstream you look at the times he was in the minority, thus out of the mainstream even of of judges.

        And that is where his record screams who and what he cares about. How hard would that be to present.

        Those who voted for cloture and then voted NO on Alito are less them impressive.

        I know some Republicans who voted for Alito don't want bush to be king. I don't understand their strong support.

        I don't understand why I was so sad again today watching the vote since I knew he was in.

        I don't know SCOTUS enough to know how many would vote to let bush have his unchecked powers, I just know alito will be one more vote that pleases bush on that question.

      •  How about the principle (none)
        that no nominee deserves an upperdown vote if he/she doesn't forthrightly answer questions?
      •  which standard of proof? (none)
        Are we still going by the outmoded "probable cause" standard, or have we adopted the new "reasonable" whim standard?

        Better question, which standard does Alito think the executive branch should use?

      •  You have got to be kidding me (none)
        Did you read his record?

        Impeach Indict Incarcerate

        by 4Isis on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:18:26 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Ummmm.... (none)
        While I agree that in the hearings he never directly said anything that would indicate that he was "bad."  Then again, he really didn't say anything at all.  But we do have all of his rulings from all of his years on the bench and if you take those and his opinions, it's doesn't take a Rhode's Scholar to deduce just how terrible of a Justice he is going to make.
    •  Obviously... (none)
      17 Democrats didn't like the politics of a filibuster.
    •  because (4.00)
      People like to toe the middle ground in order to try to please everyone. Lieberman for example votes one way to appear "moderate" and then the other way to show he's still a "Democrat." The big winner: Ned Lamont, who got $100 from me last night along with a promise to help out in the campaign.
      •  How'd that happen? (none)
        Does Lamont accept contributions now?
        •  He accepts... (none)
          ...pledges, not contributions at the moment. First you introduce yourself via a textbox on the front page (nedlamont.com). This takes you to a second page where you enter your name, address, email, and phone and are invited to make a pledge.

          I don't think he has the staff or any sort of mechanism in place to handle collections or deal with the necessary legal filings. This is all still very new. Someone's inbox is getting absolutely flooded with pledges at the moment. A blessing for Ned and a curse for the staffer.

    •  Simple (4.00)
      It was a safe vote.  Those people knew Alito would be confirmed, so they voted against him in an effort to appease the non-fascists among the voters.
      •  It ain't gonna work. The only folks who will even (4.00)
        notice who their reps voted for are us, and we know what their cloture votes meant. And we know what this one means too, an insult to our intelligence.

        -6.88/-5.64 * You know what's happening. Fight it.

        by John West on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:48:29 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  And yet (none)
        this non-fascist is still unappeased. And a little hungry. I'll nosh now. And resume my anti-fascist work after linch.

        "She was very young,he thought,...she did not understand that to push an inconvenient person over a cliff solves nothing." -1984

        by aggressiveprogressive on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:49:57 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Make that "lunch" (none)
          not "linch. Don't want anyone to think I'm making Coulter-esque threats against our newest SCOTUS member AND that I'm unable to spell correctly.

          "She was very young,he thought,...she did not understand that to push an inconvenient person over a cliff solves nothing." -1984

          by aggressiveprogressive on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:59:58 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  Because Yesterday's Vote Counted (none)
      ...and, in fact, once it became clear cloture would succeed, even  a "no" vote yesterday was a symbolic freebie.

      It's anybody's guess how many Democratic Senators there are who would actually stand tall for all the things Alito threatens against the threat of the nuclear option. All we know is that it's no more than 25.

      Pathetic.

      Preserving the old ways from being abused/Protecting the new ways for me and for you/What more can we do?

      by GreenSooner on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:59:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  See my post above (none)
      Landrieu wanted something
      for Katrina.  Hope she got it.

      The NOGC is STILL a dead zone.

  •  Joe (4.00)
    A couple of No votes to consider - Joe Lieberman, a member of the Gang of 14.

    Just like he voted for cloture on the bankruptcy bill, but then got all pious about how he voted against the bill on the floor. Whateva.

    •  Piety aside... (none)
      This is a classic case of why the jihad against Joe Lieberman is a bad idea.  Here you have a reliable vote on things like judges and you want to jeopardize that.
      •  Reliable my ass. (4.00)
        Reliable would be voting FOR the filibuster.  Ned got a pledge from me too last night.
      •  Reliable for whom? (none)
      •  Reliable vote and support (none)
        For torture
        For continuing the war in Iraq
        For starting a war in Iran or Syria
        For unitary exectuive power

        But what's in a kiss? Maybe you'll be treated to a repeat performance tonight.  Pucker up!

        •  Complete bullshit (1.00)
          Actually not complete.  More like 90% bullshit.

          Joe's for torture?  I don't think so.  He co-authored, with John McCain, the anti-torture legislation that was eventually passed by the Senate.

          Joe's for continuing the war in Iraq? Well that's one way to frame it.  Another way is to say that Joe believes that the consequences of a premature troop withdrawal are too dangerous to risk.

          Joe's for starting a war in Syria or Iran?  You mean he's unwilling to rule out using military force to confront genocidal, nuke-seeking, terror-sponsoring regimes?  Sounds good to me!

          Joe's for a "unitary executive"?  You mean because he voted for cloture on Alito that means he wants a unitary executive?  Or is there some other bit of evidence to support such an outrageous statement?

          For the life of me, I can't figure out the Joe Jihad.  It has to be absolutely the most stupid fucking thing I've ever seen.

          •  pay attention (none)
            you might learn something.

            If you were paying attention, you'd know that Joe was the only Senator who argued FOR torture on the Senate floor during the Gonzales for AG debate.  Not  just for Gonzales, actually FOR torture. The only one, not even Cornyn, Sessions or Coburn were nutty or extreme enough to do that.

            Joe is for permanent bases in Iraq and for "staying the course".  Put two and two together and it still comes up four.

            Joe is for the "democracy is on the march" horseshit this administration piles high, including using military force in Syria and Iran.  What army do you think we'll send it, what chance for peace and stability do you think that brings to the region? What chance do you think that brings to actually making this country one bit safer when we can't even get our own citizens food and water in an emergency?

            Do you understand what unitary executive power means?  Have you read Joe's opinions? Because if you had, you'd know that Joe supports executive authority to spy on Americans without oversight, that's in addition to torture, gutting habeas corpus, rendition and perpetual war.

      •  Piety without principle (4.00)
        If Lieberman is reliable at anything, it's voting for cloture on issues like this and the bankruptcy bill -- knowing that that represents the real vote -- and then turning around and casting his final vote against, so that he can go back to CT and claim he's voting to protect his constituents from these horrible outcomes. Does he somehow think we don't notice that? If/when Lamont goes after him, we need to be ready to call bullshit every time Lieberman tries to make these bogus claims.
      •  Reliable (4.00)
        Um, no. Joe voted FOR cloture. That's the exact opposite of a reliable vote. The confirmation vote was meaningless - the only one that counted was cloture.

        Do you wish to argue that Joe was a reliable vote against the bankruptcy bill, too?

  •  Do you mean . . . (none)
    Bush as dictator?
  •  Well...thats 91% (none)
    thats a damn good number.  People may bitch about "we need to be united!" for a caucus which has over 1/3 of it's members in red states...many of them in DEEP red states, gatting a 91% unity vote against Alito is probably pretty good.
    •  91% of dirt is still dirt. (none)
      Swaying 10% of republicans would have more effect.
      •  except that (none)
        republicans have the presidency and the majority, both of which are condusive to holding the caucus together.
        •  so let's toss the 3rd branch on the pyre? (4.00)
          Hell, they've got the other two and it's only a lifetime appointment. What could that hurt?

          The filibuster is for the minority, yet there are enough democrats who could give a shit about a caucus or a massive shift in the Supreme Court.

          •  No (none)
            I was just explaining why republican have more incentive to vote with their leadership than democrats...and thats because they have more carrots and sticks.
            •  same carrots and same sticks (none)
              just far less discipline. How do you think the Republicans got their carrots and sticks?
              •  No (none)
                When the president as the same party as you, you have a single leader...a single driver.  You have more of an incentive, or even an obligation, to support "a bill proposed by the president" rather than "a bill proposed by a member of your party" which is the case if the president is of the other party.

                Also, when in the majority, you can tell rouge members "well, we just don't need you" and do things like....run a primary challenger against them (Chafee anyone?) or take away their pork, in an attempt to keep them in line.

                The minority party, frankly, can't really afford to go after their own members.  What happens if we go after Conrad, Nelson (NE), and Johnson, beat them in their dem primaries, but then lose the general election.  We just lost 3 seats which we couldn't afford to lose and would have kept had we not challenged those candidates in the primary.  If republicans lose chafee, in a way its "big deal"...they go to 54 instead of 55.

                Also, especially for red state dems, there is the psychology of "they're in the majority for a reason" and, being from more conservative areas, may tend to vote more conservative since they perceive the political atmosphere to be in favor of conservatives.

                •  Read your history (none)
                  FDR, Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Clinton all had major legislation derailed by their own parties. And the once minority party became the majority party because they did go after their own members.

                  The psychology of red state dems comes from consultants who don't know their ass from a hole in the ground.  If they were paid by the win, they'd be dead broke by now.

                  If you missed Molly Ivins column on the majority, go and find it. There simply is no reality ti and no excuse for the centrist games that have been losing elections for years.

                  •  and the similarties are (none)
                    all four are democrats....and the democratic party is more conservative than the republican party is liberal, if for no other reason than 1) there are more conservative states than liberal states, which work to the republicans advantage, and 2) conservatives outnumber liberals something like 2 to 1. (I think the breakdown is something like 20-40-40 liberal-moderate-conservative)
                    •  I keep seeing (none)
                      that 2-1 ratio bandied about. Where does it come from?
                    •  why do you think that is? (none)
                      It's because the Democratic party WAS the government for most of the time since the depression.  That puts the kybosh on your more "conservative" states than "liberal" ones, now don't it?  New Deal ring a bell?  22nd Amendment ring a bell?

                      The terms "conservative" and "liberal" are meaningless, social, fiscal, small government, big government, states rights, workers rights, what? They cannot be quantified, let alone quantified over time. That which cannot be quantified cannot be calculated as a ratio of anything.

                      •  perception does matter (none)
                        people who consider themselves liberal will more likely vote for people they see as liberal.  people who consider themselves conservative will more likely vote for people they see as conservative.  Whether they actually are conservative or liberal is besides the point.

                        The fact is that, with a population which sees it self as 20% libreal, 40% moderate, and 40% conservative, your choices in politics are pretty much going to be moderate or conservative.  A party can't afford to be the liberal party.  The support just isn't there.

                        •  so stick with the labels? (none)
                          Perceptions do matter, but who defines liberal? How have they defined it?  To what end?  Most people do not consider themselves racist either, but that sure as hell don't mean they aren't.

                          Just as no one now would run on the "racist" platform, doesn't mean that racism still isn't shaping the cultural and political landscape.

                          Get to the shared values, fuck the labels. They're meaningless as are the statistics based on them. We have much more in common that our political leaders would like us to believe.  The false constructs of "liberal" and "conservative" serve their purpose, not ours and not our country's.

      •  Also (4.00)
        36% of democrats come from red states

        15% of republicans come from blue states

        That's bad odds.  4 Red state dems defected...thats 1/4.  1 blue state republican defected...thats 1/8 of their totals.

        If the ratios are the same, republicans still win.

    •  Pretty Good (4.00)
      ..will get you a single-party state.
  •  Those are decent numbers. (none)
    Yeah we lost, but at least the vote wasn't 72/28.  How long ago was it that a vote like this required 2/3s?  Was it ever?

    I know the vote on cloture used to be 67, but it changed at some point.  Who changed it and why?

  •  Interesting juxtoposition... (4.00)
    ...since this is my main reason for opposing Alito.
    We'll see what the folks who thought discussing Alito was too much of a bother have to say about the theory of Bush as King.
    The Imperial Presidency is on the march.
  •  ...and I suppose this is farewell... (none)
    ...to Armando as a front-pager? Bum-mer (although, granted, there are bigger things to be bummed about at the moment)

    undercaffeinated

    by odum on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:40:51 AM PST

  •  How about an action plan for tomorrow's hearings? (none)

    We drew our heavy revolvers (suddenly in the dream there were revolvers) and exultantly killed the gods. -- Jorge Luis Borges, Ragnarok

    by Hobbitfoot on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:40:55 AM PST

  •  No balls (4.00)

    Would have been nice if the 42 NO voters had somehow found the stones to also vote to sustain a filibuster.  Spineless bastards.

    My own senator is one of them.  I know this has been posted elsewhere, but if you haven't already been there, please go there now:

    www.nedlamont.com

    •  How about those ... (none)
      ... "spineless" Republicans like Olympia Snowe, Susan Collins, Arlen Specter, etc. who voted in favor of Judge Alito.  Why not go after them as well?  At least those "spineless" Democrats you talk about had the courage to vote against the nominee.  The people I mentioned didn't even have that kind of courage.

      Today, the Court purports to be the dispassionate oracle of the law, unmoved by "natural sympathy." - Justice Blackmun, dissenting, DeShaney v. Winnebago County

      by jim bow on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:09:24 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yep. The Alito vote show (none)
        tht there is no really such thing as a pro-choice Republican in the US Senate (with the possible exception of Chafee who should wake up and realize that  he is in the wrong party.).

        (-2.75,-4.77) "Whenever we dumb down the political debate, we lose." Senator Barack Obama

        by Sam I Am on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 10:07:20 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Tim Johnson (4.00)
    This guy seems to be following in Daschle's footsteps. I guess he didn't learn that the GOP still will stab him in the back even if he goes along with what they want.

    Good grief.

    -7.38, -5.23 One day we ALL will know the truth about the 2000 presidential election. God help us all.

    by CocoaLove on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:41:35 AM PST

  •  Comparisons (none)
    By comparison, Gonazels was 60-36. And Clarence Thomas was 52-48 - though Dems had many more seats then.
    •  According to Nina Totenberg, ... (none)
      ... Clarence Thomas was going to get almost 60 votes (including those of Sens. Reid and Lieberman, who both eventually voted against Thomas) until Anita Hill came forward with a story that mesmerized the nation.  That's pretty sad that a person of Thomas's ideology and moral character could receive around 60 votes when there were 57 Democrats in the Senate at the time.

      Today, the Court purports to be the dispassionate oracle of the law, unmoved by "natural sympathy." - Justice Blackmun, dissenting, DeShaney v. Winnebago County

      by jim bow on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:06:08 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Respect (4.00)
    I have more respect for Nelson, Conrad, Byrd and Johnson, who are all openly red state centrists than for the characters who voted for cloture and against Alito. Cowards. Playing both sides on this makes no sense.
  •  The CYA Talking Point Vote (4.00)
    This is the vote for the talking points in the future for people that don't actually pay close attention to the fact that we lost yesterday and that the cloture vote is what mattered.  This vote didn't mean shit.
  •  Look on the bright side.... (none)
    ...the Dems who voted yes today gave us an excellent opportunity of whom to get rid off (electorically, of course!).  The rest, however can wait until we get a majority THEN vote them out with some actual progressives.
  •  Those numbers are (none)
    Extraordinary.

    *"It is the difficulties that show what men are" ..Epictetus*

    by Chamonix on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:43:51 AM PST

  •  I'd like to thank my Senators, (4.00)
    Kennedy and Kerry for fighting, loudly and proudly.    Keep up the good work, boys.  Contribution's on its way.

    I'd like to spank the news media for their asshattery, specifically calling upon news personalities (I refuse to call them Journalists) as "experts."

  •  This count is useless. (4.00)
    Kos, you should know better. The "up or down" count is useless. Senators will switch votes if they can get away with it and not vote their principles.

    The real vote was the cloture vote. Until the dems get this and frame it correctly (I mean us dems, not the party), we will never put enough pressure on the party to stand up.

    You know why a lot of dems didn't vote for cloture? Because they know that they will be able to say "I voted NO on Alito". It will take a lot of nuance to explain that he voted YES on cloture, and the NO vote was pointless.

    So they didn't have to expose themselves, and will not be hurt politically.

    My list of Senators who I will never support is the sum of those who voted for Gonzalez, for the MBNA bill, and for cloture on Alito.

    Oh, if the party is listening: Fuck you.

  •  Just one note (4.00)
    (I was going to FP this myself, but I'm happy to defer to Armando.)

    Justice Alito will be sworn in this afternoon, and is expected to be seated with his new colleagues at tonight's SOTU.

    If they really want to twist the knife in our backs, Justice O'Connor will be in the balcony with the First Lady, where she will receive a long and deserved standing ovation to thank her for her service to the Nation.

  •  Armando (4.00)
    I hope you will continue to post on the front page on the NSA hearings. That fight may be more important (at least in the short-term) than this one was.

    Was this vote meaningful? AP points out:

    Only four Democrats voted for Alito's confirmation, the lowest number of senators not in the president's party to support a Supreme Court nominee in modern history. By comparison, Justice Clarence Thomas was confirmed in 1991 with a 52-48 vote behind the support of 11 Democrats who broke party ranks and voted for President George H.W. Bush's nominee.
  •  Strange strategy (4.00)
    What exactly do Dem leaders hope to gain by yet another surrender?

    Practice makes perfect?

    I predict the Dem leadership will GRANT domestic spying privileges to Bush, and make them retroactive to the date of his ascendency to the throne of the United Corporation of America.

    So they can keep their little court consort jobs.

    </snark>

    -6.63 -5.64

    I am I and you are you, and we are both each other too -- Clair Huffaker

    by xysrl on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:46:54 AM PST

  •  How does (none)
    this affect the Maine sisters? Since most of the GOP senators are from red states, they are the only ones I can think of that this might hurt their reelection chance.

    I'm too disgusted right now to think of a sig.

    by Ga6thDem on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:47:12 AM PST

  •  Sick (4.00)
    I'm just fucking sick over this.  19 Democratic Senators stabbed us in the back yesterday.  They voted to weaken our Constitution and strip us of our civil liberties.  I'm fucking sick.

    Each and every one of the Turncoat 19 need to be taken out.  We need to find a way to organize and mobilize and send them all to the unemployment lines.  Bastards.

    •  Lieberman and Kohl (none)
      Well at least we know that Lieberman and Kohl are being primaried this year. Frequent dKos contributor Ben Masel is challenging Herb Kohl, who permanently crossed the line with me yesterday by voting for cloture. Quite a disappointment after his smart questioning regarding Bork as a role model. It was bad enough to see him vote for the bankruptcy bill, but he's lost me now.

      Of course I'll still vote for whomever the Dems put up in the general, but I will now volunteer for Masel.

      •  Needs to Go (none)
        Lieberman is the first on the hit list... he needs to be out of a job right quick.

        I am definitely going to do what I can to help the campaigns in other states of people running against these bastards.  

        •  Lieberman (none)
          Why?....because he isn't on the kook left-fringe?....If Joe ran for President, he'd win, because he's more "mainstream" like Dems used to be.....he's not part of the Socialist/Marxist party that is now the Democrat party.
          •  Huh? (none)
            What in the fuck are you talking about?

            Liberman would never win the Democratic nomination let alone the Presidency.  You think the Dems are Marxist?  You're an idiot.  Liberman is not only out of touch with the mainstream and a Republican toadie, he's out of touch with his own constituency.

    •  The Problem Isn't the Individuals... (none)
      ...it's the party.

      The serious choices for progressives are:

      1. Fundamentally change the Democratic Party (and I mean ideologically, not just strategically)

      2. Build something better.

      Preserving the old ways from being abused/Protecting the new ways for me and for you/What more can we do?

      by GreenSooner on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:04:41 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Somewhat Agree But Not Quite (4.00)
        Honestly, I think the Democratic party as an institution is fine.  I think the Democratic platform touches on issues that we all agree with on some level.  

        I do think the problem is with individuals.  People like Lieberman, who turn their backs on the party and on their constituents, are the problem.  People like that should just become Republicans or get out of the party altogether.

      •  we like Option 1 (4.00)
        around here.

        Go start greenkos.com or something.  Voting 3rd Party = Electing Republicans.

        Making a viable progressive 3rd party is about as likely as us taking over the Republican party and taking it to the left.

        "I will make a bargain with the Republicans. If they will stop telling lies about Democrats, we will stop telling the truth about them." -- Adlai Stevenson

        by Scientician on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:30:47 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Sick and Disgusted (none)
      There is a true disconnect with these Senators and the American People, and again, there is a disconnect and divide between all of us, those of us who call ourselves progressives, and those narrow minded Americans, these people must be educated, instead of being educated by one minute sound bites.  It's truly disgusting.
    •  Yeah, (none)
      I'm not real happy about Alito either.  Much of the anger has been thrown at the 19 Dems who voted for cloture instead of continuing the debate for a few more weeks.  Many people are even saying they should be tossed out of the Senate and out of the party, as if they had voted against impeachment for Bush.  I think this anger and criticism is being aimed at the wrong targets.  It's not the 19 Dems that allowed Alito to get to the Senate floor and ultimately on the Supreme Court.  What allowed Bush to win on Alito, and to win on many other things of importance in the past 5 years, has been the abyssmal performance of the Democratic party in recent years, beginning in 2000 when this circus could have been stopped before it was even started.  
      While Al Gore is the darling of the blogs here in 2006, he was a stiff Washington-insider who couldn't spell the word CHARISMA in 2000.  While everyone will say the election was stolen from him, the election really shouldn't have been that close. His lacking political skills that year showed when he:

      1)chose Lieberman as his VP instead of someone from the midwest that would have added to the ticket like Evan Bayh, Tom Vilsack, or Bill Richardson.  And yet he still lost New Hampshire with Lieberman on the ticket.  
      2)ran away from the Clinton administration's record.  While he should have shown disapproval in Clinton for the Monica stuff, he should have grasped onto the 28 mil. jobs created, 4% unemployment, balanced budget, and lowered national debt.
      3)didn't campaign with Clinton in Arkansas
      (a state that loves Clinton) or Louisiana (a state that has twice as many registered Dems than Reps).  Those 3/4 electoral votes in Ark. would have won him the election.

      Then there was the inaction of the Dems in 2002 allowing Rove to characterize them as soft on national security without a word in protest.  Goodbye senate majority.

      Which brings me to Kerry and 2004, a election that should have been a beatdown like Carter/Reagan 1980, but instead was national security President vs. anti-war radical, a la Nixon/McGovern 1972.  Kerry, who won 5 medals in Vietnam, allowed himself to be characterized as a security wimp who, according to the Swift Boat Vets, fought alongside the VietCong and ate American babies.  He also showed his political genius by having three positions on Iraq and choosing John Edwards as his VP candidate, a one-term senator who added nothing but a smile to the ticket.  Also his strategy of campaiging in only 18 states and trying to win 16 of them was absolutely brilliant.  This along with the fact that the Dem Party supplied no decent candidate in the open Senate seats in the South previously held by retiring Dems.  

      So while we could have had either Gore or Kerry as president, a slight majority in Congress, and 3 new Supreme Court justices to be proud of(assuming Stevens would have retired in Gore's 1st term), we instead have a Radical Right govt that has almost unlimited power.  In the end, throwing out 19 Democratic Senators from red/purple states isn't the answer needed to slow the rightward tilt of the Supreme Court.  

      ???/Richardson '08 Who's going to head my ticket?

      by DemBrock on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 12:17:27 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Snow and Collins (4.00)
    Some moderates.  I hope the people in Maine are listening.  

    -3.63, -4.46 "Choose something like a star to stay your mind on- and be staid"

    by goldberry on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:49:05 AM PST

    •  Agree (4.00)
      Exactly!  Its time to send both of them packing... along with New Hampshire's Senators.  I hope Democrats can field a good candiate against Snowe and drives their point home in a state that Kerry carried by a 10% margin.
    •  believe me (4.00)
      we're listening - and not happy at all.  In the Portland Press Herald today I was somewhat surprised at all the people who wrote in voicing their disapproval of Alito.  And I know that a large number of people wrote in asking both of them to NOT support this nomination.  Nice to know how much they listen to their constituents.  For all those Mainers who have complained about them being RINO's - I think they've shown their stripes. (Although I do have to wonder if they think that this is the trade-off to protect Bath Iron Works.)

      Last night I stayed up late playing poker with Tarot cards. I got a full house and four people died --Steven Wright

      by seefleur on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:56:04 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Bath Iron Works PLUS... (none)
        The PLUS in this is the LNG(liquid natural gas)  in Washington County.
        This is supposed to be GOOD for the Maine economy.
        As they said in Calais,its supposed to bring as many as "70" jobs!
        Pleasant Point reservation has been denied a casino over and over again...now,they are going to have the LNG.
        I think this is the OTHER half of the "Trade Off".
        Just my opinion
        kitsch21
    •  Massachusetts should take Maine back (none)
      into its bordrers.  
      Unbelievable.  
      Even though I am not a Mainer, I feel I need to write them both a letter.
  •  Like I just said in another diary (none)
    This sure beats the Roberts vote:

    Sept. 29, 2005 Final Senate Vote  
     Accepted by a vote of 78-22:
      Republicans  55-0
      Democrats 22-22
      Independent 1

    We're getting there.

  •  Ok I know its done (none)
    and that we're all justifiably mad at Joementum, but there are 3 votes for cloture that absolutely baffle me.   Can anyone tell me what was behind the votes for cloture of Akaka, Inouye and Kohl?

    I truly am baffled on those three.

  •  When Would They Filibuster? (none)
    If a filibuster couldn't be put together to protect Choice, then what possible other issue could be considered significant enough to actually use the filibuster?

    Meaning, as the party in the minority, what does it matter if we have 44 Democrats, compared to 40 or less (straight party vote unable to maintain filibuster)... since a filibuster will never apparently be used anyway?

    Meaning, I promised $100 to Ned Lamont in Connecticut last night.  Part of our current strategy needs to be to filter our the useless Democrats.  Lieberman has got to go.

    -N.B.

    "Don't look back... something might be gaining on you..." -Satchel Paige.

    by npb7768 on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:50:12 AM PST

    •  no proof that he'd overturn roe (none)
      we have suspicions, but no proof.
      •  Dreamer (none)
        Sorry, but you are dreaming.

        Impeach Indict Incarcerate

        by 4Isis on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:29:55 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Other than him (4.00)
        writing that memo about how to do it and why it should be done.

        Don't say "it was just a job" - Would you have worked for Reagan and helped write memos on how to overturn Roe?  Would anyone who believes in Choice do it?  Of course not.  It was a job, but it was an ideological job he sought out as a movement conservative.  It's ridiculous to assert he was only following orders or dispassionately representing a client.

        If didn't believe in that stuff, he would have been working (likely better paid) in the private sector, or perhaps in a more non-ideological part of the government (plenty of lawyers needed in the government to write contracts, settle lawsuits and such that aren't drafting major ideological legal policy).

        "I will make a bargain with the Republicans. If they will stop telling lies about Democrats, we will stop telling the truth about them." -- Adlai Stevenson

        by Scientician on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:38:39 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Remember, (none)
          O'Connor was against abortion before she got on the court and women's groups were marching in front of the capitol protesting Souter's nomination.  Sometimes things change when a person gets on the court, sometimes not.

          ???/Richardson '08 Who's going to head my ticket?

          by DemBrock on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 12:22:52 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Sure, (none)
            He could be lying or change his mind, but I'd like to think if Defending Roe is important, it would be better to get justices who aren't opposed to it on the court and worry they'll turn againt it, rather than hope those against it will turn out for it.

            Souter is pretty much the nightmare scenario the conservatives are striving to avoid repeating.  I suspect Miers got rejected precisely for fears she'd be another Souter.  

            Both those examples are probably why there is so little fuss over Alito.  Nobody outside the activists really seriously believes they'll overturn Roe.  

            "I will make a bargain with the Republicans. If they will stop telling lies about Democrats, we will stop telling the truth about them." -- Adlai Stevenson

            by Scientician on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 02:05:15 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  What I don't understand is (4.00)
    why so many Democratic senators essentially voted FOR Alito by not supporting a filibuster?  I have to confess that I was not following the debate too closely; once it was clear that Alito is a closet monarchist, my mind was made up and I imagined that the same would be true of 'our' senators.  Clearly not.

    So what exactly was the calculation, especially when even the New York Times came out against him (too late to do any good)?  Were they afraid that the Contra Roe v. Wade voters would come out in force against them (my best guess for my senator Maria Cantwell's dereliction of duty)?  Or was it because many of them are still in denial as to the true nature of the Bush regime?  That seems implausible, but miracles never cease.  Is it fear of Bush's 'popularity'?  That seems even more far-fetched.  But miracles never cease.  I just don't get it.

    What exactly is the source of fear among so many establishment Democrats?  I'd really appreciate some comments on this from people better tuned in than I am, because the Alito catastrophe seems symptomatic of so many past defeats on issues that one would expect most Democrats to stand up and be counted.

    •  They made their decisions (none)
      with an eye towards political calculations. No surprise or cynicism here -- this is what all politicians do (and must do) if they want to keep their jobs.

      However, I believe their political calculations were wrong, because filibustering Alito would have been a political boon for our party.

      It's our job to keep fighting and convince them of that.

      Democrats will fight for a Renewed Deal with the American people.

      by Hoyapaul on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:15:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Long-Term Perspective (none)
      It would be a new precedent if a Senate minority could block a qualified S. Ct. nominee on ideological grounds.

      Where would that leave the next Democratic President? Or do folks here think there won't be another Democrat in the White House?

      Are folks banking on Democrats holding a filibuster-proof 60 Senate seats? Or do you think that judicial filibusters will be just for us, and the GOP won't be allowed to use them?

      While I didn't see anyone here addressing the long-term consequences, I'm reasonably certain a lot of Democratic Senators found them persuasive.

  •  Coretta Scott King Dies at 78 (none)
    http://news.yahoo.com/...

    How terribly sardonic that her final day on Earth be at all associated in the public eye with the Republican triumph of placing an unaffected and elitist dittohead like Alito to a lifetime appointment on our most powerful Court.

    •  I hope this gets on the front page (none)
      Martin and Coretta both suffered from travails and prejudices few should have to imagine, and with all this talk about how we're going to do this or do that to show how strong or powerful we are, we should remember a woman who truly was the epitome of strength, grace, and intelligence.
    •  What's even worse (4.00)
      is I'm willing to bet Bush exploits her death in some way in tonight's SOTU speech.

      The world is made for those who are not cursed with self-awareness. -- Annie Savoy, from "Bull Durham" Yeah, and George W. Bush is living proof.

      by wmtriallawyer on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:00:56 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Well, we're going to have to join the fight now... (4.00)
    Looks like our civil liberties, freedoms, laws and progressive successes are almost completely gone - a product of the maniacal "Christian" right wing bigots' 20 year campaign to take over the government of this country.  

    What was I doing during this time?  Getting a college degree, and working long hours to get to where I am now.  I think I have to take some responsibility for being complacent enough, or lacking the courage to give up what I have to fight this bullshit.  

    I'm a pacifist, but I will fight if cornered.  Looks like, as a progressive minded person, I am in that corner now.  I don't know what I'm going to do, but the gloves are off and I'm forced to fight now.  Hope those wingnuts know what they're doing, because it's going to get ugly.

    •  All that those people fought for (none)
      poof! gone due to the ignorance of our democratic party and us, what are our priorities? And an enemy within our own country, we have our own homegrown terrorists plotting and waiting to make the kill.  
  •  ACTION ITEM On Spying (4.00)
    Tomorrow, the Bush illegal domestic surveillance scheme comes front and center.

    In preparation for the Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing next week, let's try to set the following story straight. The media repeat Karl Rove's Democrats-don't-want-to- spy-on-Al-Qaeda lie. Let's tell them what we think about that.

    On January 20, Karl Rove claimed:

    President Bush believes if Al Qaeda is calling somebody in America, it is in our national security interest to know who they're calling and why. Some important Democrats clearly disagree.

    On January 26, the AP reported:

    Polls suggest the public is divided on whether the administration should be able to eavesdrop on suspected terrorist communications, a practice that has drawn criticism from many congressional Democrats, human rights and civil liberties groups.

    This is an AP story by Rob Fournier. This is everywhere, verbatim. To focus the campaign, for now, let's go after CNN and the AP.

    CNN:
    Use this to comment in the form of a question (which Democrats, exactly, would those be...?). You will need to provide this html at the bottom of the form.

    Use this to simply comment. Then suggest that they do a story about Rove and spin, for good measure.

    AP:
    Use this to comment. Or call them: (212) 621 1500
    They may tell you to call: (202) 776-9400, for the Washington Bureau, but call the main number, too. If you get connected to Alan (?) in the "library" in Washington, he may not be happy to talk to you.  Be polite. Try kindness (first). Ask questions: have they released a correction (yet)? will they?  

    Check your local paper to see if they picked it up. Then ask them, too, to correct the mistake and apologize.

    Remember Howell? Let's go get them again!

    Copied from my diary. Recommend it if you think this action item is worth acting on.

  •  2 cents (4.00)
    I wonder if George Bush will be still smiling as his history is written during the next century and beyond.  Almost everything he promised to deliver he did not.  He and his people have delivered an erosion of much of the we have fought to achieve since the inception of our country.  Mr. Bush you have NOTHING to be smiling about.  

    BushCo Policy... If you aren't outraged, you haven't been paying attention. -3.25 -2.26

    by Habanero on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:51:56 AM PST

  •  Red Staters Gloating (4.00)
    The Red Staters are gloating.  Some choice quotes:

    It is done!  Can we start oppressing women and minorities yet?  I saved a 55-gallon drum of 1950 vintage PCBs to dump in a creek for just such an occasion as this.

    I'll get the coat hanger.  Ew, sorry.

    I recognize there is some sarcasm in there, but a lot of kernels of true thinking in there as well.

    Heaven forbid we make fun of "Fundies" -- it's a war on Christmas!!!

    I will accept this president when he accepts me as a citizen of his country.

    by nycliberal2004 on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:52:42 AM PST

    •  Let 'em gloat (4.00)
      ... the best revenge is living well.  

      And by 'living well' I mean, making sure this is the last victory the right-wingers see for awhile.

      Kos is right, it's time to move on to the NSA hearings.  No time to lick wounds and feel sorry for ourselves.

    •  Let them. (4.00)
      It's their liberties too.  When one of their underage daughters is pregnant with the spawn of someone they think undesireable, they'll be laughing on the other side of their faces.  And then they'll be joining the Democratic party.

      Good fight, everyone.  Excellent fight.  I am inspired and invigorated by the fight, enough even to post on DailyKos and read comments on a 44kbps dialup connection from England.  I am proud to count myself among your number.  I am privileged to be called Kossack when Kossacks are clearly the finest folk on the face of the earth.

      I look forward to all the wonders we can accomplish now that we have up a head of steam and the fires are only being stoked more every day.

      Onward 'til morning, my friends, onward!!

    •  As expected (none)
      These people hate us like Ahab hated Moby Dick.  They would sell their souls to hurt us.  It is sad and pitiful.  

      Oh by the way, which one's pink? -R. Waters

      by Blue Neponset on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:13:22 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Mary Landrieu (4.00)
    Is kidding herself.  Same as always.  If they give her state money they won't have something to hold over her head to get her to vote for all the things that will hurt the people she represents.  LA will not get any money.  It will be dragged out to have a carrot to dangle in front of her and then she will be defeated in her next election on her inablity to get anything done for her state.

    Does the devil wear a suit and tie, Or does he work at the Dairy Queen- Martin Sexton

    by strengthof10kmen on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:53:55 AM PST

  •  Also Tomorrow (none)
    is the House vote on slashing Medicaid.  I have a Diary on the effects it will have on the disabled.

    Oh, my, is that Blog whoring?  Why, yes it is. :)

  •  Sad but with hope (none)
    42-58

    We had the votes, what a bunch of idiots.

    on the up side,

    hey bush, we can, we coudld have, from now on i hope it is,

    The fight is on, oh ya

    Bush what about national heathcare, when is the last time you paid your premiun,

    You are an idiot and we are comming after you

    REMEMBER THE EQUATION Bush doesn't want you to know

    Bush = Neo-nazi = Neo-con = Fascisim = Israel

    and when you find a neo-con  
    fire him, that simple

    Watch one go down soonnnn here on line, it is easy

    It is going to be beautifull,

    That is it will be beautiful to you, oh ya

  •  we need to move on (none)
    this is a sad day, yes.

    but why wallow?  it will only prolong the current situation of being a minority party.

    i don't like the three options that DHinMI listed, but they are true.  

    i think this past week has been a big step in changing the democratic party to something that is a viable opposition, and hopefully one day soon, a majority.

    we must suck it up, accept this defeat, learn from the campaign to stop alito, and move on to the next fight: the NSA hearings.  

    get angry, but keep working on getting even.

  •  Apparently the media (4.00)
    sees this as a stunning victory and a medalion of Bush's success.

    Why Bush Won mentions Mrs. Alito's tears, and Spector's role as "Field Commander", but fails to mention the fact that with or without the Democrat's votes anyone he nominated could be confirmed if the republicans wanted that particular candidate.


    Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's character, give him power. Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865)

    by nupstateny on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:57:34 AM PST

    •  The Republican Majority Frame is Wrong (none)
      We need to make it clearer to the world that the only reason the Republicans control the House is through gerrymandering, and the only reason they control the Senate is because of the bias towards small states (the 44 Dems got more votes than the 55 Republicans did in their respective last elections.  So, all the talk about the will of the people is a load of crap.  Please, please, please make that clear to everybody.  Think about it -- Feinstein and Boxer each represent 36 million people.  Clinton and Schumer each represent 19 million people.  Republican Craig Thomas of Wyoming represents 500,000 people.

      I'm not objecting to the Constitution or the structure of the Senate -- I'm just saying that the Republicans and the media have to be called on any statements that the "majority has spoken," etc.

      I will accept this president when he accepts me as a citizen of his country.

      by nycliberal2004 on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:03:39 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Who're challenging Snowe and Collins? (none)
    They shoulda peeled off...

    "Computer. End holographic program...Computer? Computer?"

    by kredwyn on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:57:58 AM PST

  •  Does this mean we can stop talking about him? (none)
    That's only a partial snark there...I'm saddened by his appointment, and depressed by the Democrats' inability to stand for ANY FUCKING THING worth standing for, but I'm glad this is 'over'...for now.  I know that, when cases like the late-term abortion are decided, that I will be sick to the stomache as I wait for the imminent decision to come down like an executioner's axe, but Alito, quite frankly, has been a distraction from the greater fight, in my opinion, and that fight is the struggle to bring bush down...

    and by down I mean make that dickhead-duck so fucking lame he can't float in a puddle of his own piss without tipping over face first. I want the Senate, and I want the House of Representatives, and I want bush charged as a War Criminal, then I want him to sit in a friggin' cell...okay, probably won't happen, but I can dream, can't I?

    Once in a while you get shown the light in the strangest of places if you look at it right

    by darthstar on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:59:28 AM PST

  •  And a Heads UP (none)
    about the Budget Reconciliation bill.

    Call your Senators and let them know that this is yet another attack by elists running the government on the poor.

    We should all write and thank  Chafee for standing up.
    Let him know that if he switches parties he could get a LOT more support.

    inspire change...don't back down

    by missliberties on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 08:59:43 AM PST

  •  Alito! This is great! (4.00)
    This morning:

    A Five & Dime opened on the corner, complete with an old guy sitting out front whittling.

    A bunch of jumpsuited happy guys serviced my Bel-Air.

    My wife quit her job and started scrubbing down the house.  She's making meatloaf tonight.

    My phone # now has 4 digits, and the first call I got was Bob from the Elks lodge.  We're bowling tonight!

    A big factory opened up in the neighborhood.  The sky is not so clear but at least we've got jobs.

    I also found a lot more seats near the front of the bus.

    The school called.  They beat the hell out of little Jimmy for chewing gum.  Guess I'll have to break out the paddle.

    Can't wait for the first GWB fireside chat.  Wow.  This is awesome.

  •  Who says its over? (none)
    This is just the beginning. Perhaps less auspicious than hoped for, but a beginning nonetheless. Alito on the bench requires a new tack (ALITO WATCH), different strategies or whatever, but the fight aint over.

    The greater enemies are complacency and resignation.

    Somebody give him a blow-job so we can impeach him, already!

    by Iguanamon on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:03:28 AM PST

  •  Maybe we can't afford to get rid of these guys (none)
    Maybe there are no replacements who will beat republican challengers in these guys' states, but there's nothing that says we can't try to punish these the folks who voted yes on cloture.  I don't think the guys who voted no on Alito but yes on cloture are any better or worse then the folks who voted yes on both.  What democrats should do is try to get rid of, or vote down, anything that might help these guys locally.  There ought to be a political price to pay for this kind of actions, they have to be held to account, or they will, for all intents and purposes, simply act like republicans whenever it matters.

    Note that I would feel very differently if these guys were, in fact, voting their consciences.  If I thought they honestly believed Alito was good for the country that would be a different story.  They don't.  They voted for cloture becuase the republicans and/or moneyed interests got to them somehow

    •  Yeah (none)
      I'm not real happy about Alito either.  Much of the anger has been thrown at the 19 Dems who voted for cloture instead of continuing the debate for a few more weeks.  Many people are even saying they should be tossed out of the Senate and out of the party, as if they had voted against impeachment for Bush.  I think this anger and criticism is being aimed at the wrong targets.  It's not the 19 Dems that allowed Alito to get to the Senate floor and ultimately on the Supreme Court.  What allowed Bush to win on Alito, and to win on many other things of importance in the past 5 years, has been the abyssmal performance of the Democratic party in recent years, beginning in 2000 when this circus could have been stopped before it was even started.  
      While Al Gore is the darling of the blogs here in 2006, he was a stiff Washington-insider who couldn't spell the word CHARISMA in 2000.  While everyone will say the election was stolen from him, the election really shouldn't have been that close. His lacking political skills that year showed when he:

      1)chose Lieberman as his VP instead of someone from the midwest that would have added to the ticket like Evan Bayh, Tom Vilsack, or Bill Richardson.  And yet he still lost New Hampshire with Lieberman on the ticket.  
      2)ran away from the Clinton administration's record.  While he should have shown disapproval in Clinton for the Monica stuff, he should have grasped onto the 28 mil. jobs created, 4% unemployment, balanced budget, and lowered national debt.
      3)didn't campaign with Clinton in Arkansas
      (a state that loves Clinton) or Louisiana (a state that has twice as many registered Dems than Reps).  Those 3/4 electoral votes in Ark. would have won him the election.

      Then there was the inaction of the Dems in 2002 allowing Rove to characterize them as soft on national security without a word in protest.  Goodbye senate majority.

      Which brings me to Kerry and 2004, a election that should have been a beatdown like Carter/Reagan 1980, but instead was national security President vs. anti-war radical, a la Nixon/McGovern 1972.  Kerry, who won 5 medals in Vietnam, allowed himself to be characterized as a security wimp who, according to the Swift Boat Vets, fought alongside the VietCong and ate American babies.  He also showed his political genius by having three positions on Iraq and choosing John Edwards as his VP candidate, a one-term senator who added nothing but a smile to the ticket.  Also his strategy of campaiging in only 18 states and trying to win 16 of them was absolutely brilliant.  This along with the fact that the Dem Party supplied no decent candidate in the open Senate seats in the South previously held by retiring Dems.  

      So while we could have had either Gore or Kerry as president, a slight majority in Congress, and 3 new Supreme Court justices to be proud of(assuming Stevens would have retired in Gore's 1st term), we instead have a Radical Right govt that has almost unlimited power.  In the end, throwing out 19 Democratic Senators from red/purple states isn't the answer needed to slow the rightward tilt of the Supreme Court.  

      ???/Richardson '08 Who's going to head my ticket?

      by DemBrock on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 12:26:35 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  props (4.00)
    to chafee who stuck to his morals.

    "The road to tyranny starts with the destruction of truth"- President Bill Clinton

    by SensibleDemocrat on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:06:30 AM PST

  •  Thanks Debbie and Carl (none)
    My Senators, Carl Levin and Debbie Stabinaw voted not to confirm Alito. Carl wrote an excellent open letter to the GWB explaining why he was opposing Alito's comfirmation linked text

    We need to put strong candidates up against Rethug Senators who are up for re-election and against Rethug candidates who are running in open seats. There are no seats, No matter how safe they seem that we can afford not to run the best candidate we can find against the Rethug congressmen!

    When you vote Republican you are voting for America's Talaban!

    Ken the Troll I live South of the Mackinaw Bridge and the Uppers call all of us Trolls, 'cause we live below the Bridge.

    by Ken the Troll on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:08:31 AM PST

  •  The truth is (1.00)
    that the Dems threw a party and nobody came.  And it will happen again and again if this type of battle continues.

    The American people were not opposed to Alito.  Bottom line!  Representatives are supposed to represent the people, but in this effort, the opposite was tried.  The Dems wanted the people to represent them and the people refused.  The result is a loss, embarrassment and distrust.

    And when the next battle comes about, like international telephone surveillance, if the American people are not upset and if, in fact, many, if not most, believe the action is prudent, then opposing it will hurt the Dems.

    This leadership technique, that of dragging the people around by a ring through their collective nose is not a winning strategy.  If the Dems don't want to take the people where they (the people) want to go, they will charge up the hill and find themselves up there all alone and exposed.

    The Dems must win to lead, not oppose to lead.  But it is what they are doing.  It happened yesterday and today.  Fight the same battle again, the same will happen.

    •  Not true (none)
      Most people don't give two shits about Alito and have no idea what a filibuster is.  We failed to make them take notice.  That is not the same as opposing the will of the people.  

      Oh by the way, which one's pink? -R. Waters

      by Blue Neponset on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:16:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Then (none)
        if people are apathetic, you should be the one who directs their path.  

        You should oppose what you are against, in their name of course, because they are not as enlightened as you are.  You should shape the future into the shape you desire, in their name of course, because they are not as enlightened as you are.  You should determine the course of the nation because they are not enlightened enough to follow and support your lead.

        Good luck.  However, you may find that this apathy will easily convert into antagonism.  

        On rare occasions when one is kind enough to point out the stupidity and deficiencies of others, they, for some unfathomable and incomprehensible reason, do not bow down and thank you for setting back on the correct path to enlightenment.  Sometimes, it pisses them off.

        •  Who said (none)
          the voters weren't "enlightened enough to follow or support your lead?"  

          There are plenty of reasons to be apathetic about something.  Some people are too busy to care about Alito.  Some people have much bigger problems that who gets on the Supreme Court.  Some people don't see a distinction between Alito or any other candidate.  Some people find politics distasteful.  Only you seem to think this means they are not "enlightened".  

          You also seem to think Alito's ascendency to the High Court was the will of the people and I don't think enough people cared about it to classify it as such.  If you want to argue that Alito's Justiceship was the will of the people then show some poll numbers or grass roots non-partisan support of Alito or letters to the editor, or the C-SPAN ratings of the confirmation hearings.    

          Oh by the way, which one's pink? -R. Waters

          by Blue Neponset on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:39:43 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  well (none)
      its not so much that the people refused as much as democrats wanted to put more light on it and they didn't get the chance to.  Would the people still have supported Alito? Maybe. Maybe not.  I think it was good to at least attempt to bring some of the issues more to light in any case.

      However, you do make the point that, despite what everyone here is saying, Alito still had majority support among Americans (and cloture probably would have more support).  

      It's not like Americans in general were like "no! no! don't confirm him!" and democrats let it happen anyway.

      I do disagree with the premise of "if the american people aren't against it, then we shouldn't be either" because it reeks too much of "sticking your finger in the wind."  Is it something one should consider? yes, probably.  Should it determine your course of action? no.

      Part of politics is bringing things to the attention of the American people.  One of the things with Alito...and with the NSA program...is that the people just don't know whats going on, and speaking out about it is the only way to bring attention to the points that you want to bring attention to.

      •  Precisely my point (none)
        Fighting the battle on the Senate floor reeks of an Aristrocracy.  The arguments should have been made to the people and the battle pursued only if the people came to the support of the cause.

        It wasn't impossible, it simply wasn't done.  And the result is now history.

        •  That is why they Kerry and Kennedy wanted (none)
          to filibuster, the debate was open last Wednesday, and they rushed to get this guy in before the American people knew what was going on, and before the SOTU.  The media and repigs are accomplishing their goal of dumbing down of Americans.  
  •  the next Supreme appointment?? (none)
    So who will Bush nominate for the next Supreme Court Justice...they get older every day and the remaining Libs are not spring chickens...one could kick off tomorrow...and there are 3 years left...
    •  Well, if we can retake the senate...or even tie it (none)
      in 2006, that'd be great. a 50-50 senate would mean equal committee representation...and judges can't get out of committee on a 9-9 vote.
      •  That's actually not true for (none)
        SCOTUS nominees.

        Clarence Thomas was 7-7.  Bork came out with negative recommendation.  Plus, as part of 50-50 committee split last time, Democrats promised to allow all SCOTUS nominees to the floor.  If they balk this time, the GOP is unlikely to go for 50-50 committee split (technically if the Senate is 50-50 they would still be "majority").

    •  Janice Rogers Brown (none)
      I don't think there is any doubt.  Will she be confirmed?  Yes, ultimately. I think that is when we see the Nukular Option.

      I continue to think we shot ourselves in the foot with this Filibuster Phoned In From Davos.  Now, when somebody comes up who Really Should Be Filibustered, the Repubs will just say how we are not serious, that we want to overturn the results of the 2004 election, etc.

      This victory lap around the Feelgood Track will end up doing much more harm than good.

      We'd better win an election, Soon.

      by jimsaco on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 03:43:25 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  now more than ever (none)
    I went to Lamonts website after the vote for cloture and pledged $100.

    Maybe Liebertraitor can be a guest speaker at the next Republican National Convention?

    Time to move on and keep up the good fight.  Progressives are changing the party from the ground up and working to oust deadwood like joe needs to stay on the radar.

    Don't fall prey to that instant gratification syndrome most Americans suffer from. Good, lasting positive change takes time and careful nurturing.

    Here in NC we are already bucking the trend and accomplishing amazing things in the state and county parties. And this in just 2 election cycles.  We now dominate the SEC and and the largest CEC's in the state.  All because we started organizing at the precinct level in 2004.  We even bucked our governor and squeaked in our own progressive state party chair Jerry Meek, the old guard was flabbergasted.

    At our last SEC just a few days ago we managed to get the rules suspended, introduced 7 resolutions supporting legislation pending in the short session (that are sponsored by progressive legislators we helped get elected) ranging from living wage to clean cars and had them all win.

    As a group we caucused and narrowed our focus on bills we want to see passed and are determined to fight for.

    Don't let DINOS get you down just get them out!

    Tonight we watch the state of the union with Howard Dean at satisfactions restaurant in Durham...WOOT!!!

  •  Wow, Landrieu votes no. My god. (none)
    It seems that Katrina has reminded her that she should at least accessorize from the Dem side of the aisle on occasion. It also swept her away from her select positioning as one of the "Dems" who would help the GOP eradicate the Estate Tax for all time. Katrina's timing made that bit of scheduling inconvenient. She and her friend Ben Nelson were being "lunched," good old reliables that they are for the GOP.

    Well good for you Mary. But you still suck. Your record is a mile long.  And a donkey button on an elephant suit does not a democrat make.

    Should a liberal Dem blog be driven into "safe zones" by a tame party, or should it drive a tame party to break out?

    by NYCee on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:16:43 AM PST

  •  Students at UC Berkeley law school ... (none)
    ... let out a collective groan.  Ugg, this is going to be a long backward step in the progressive movement to the point of making the law the enemy rather than protector of people.  

    On the plus side, looks like California might be getting public financing of elections ... a way to solve the problem of who gets to vote on these important issues.  We've depended on the law for a long time to stand up against strong pressure from the right, but really we need people to stand up every day because the court only works at the margins, what matters is what we do every day in our own lives.  Shop locally at stores that support your views, vote, run, GO GO GO!  Don't get despressed, get angry and fight!

  •  Domestic Spying (none)
    I'm dusting off my copy of Orwell's 1984 as I type.
  •  With the help of democrats (none)
    Alito to be confirmed as US Supreme Court Justice

    ...These and the policies of the Bush administration as a whole are deeply unpopular, and Bush's poll numbers are falling again. A recent poll conducted by ABC News and the Washington Post found that Bush's approval rating stands at 42 percent, which, except for Nixon during the Watergate scandal, is the worst for a president entering his sixth year in half a century. Sixty percent of the population disapproves of the war in Iraq and the same percentage thinks that Bush does not understand their problems.

    If the Democrats were serious about opposing Alito and his extreme right-wing agenda, they would mount a political campaign among broad masses of the population. However, this is the last thing they want, for this would pose a threat to the interests the Democrats themselves support.

    In spite of the declining support for the administration, the popular opposition to the war and the assault on democratic rights, the anger that has been generated due to declining living standards and growing inequality, the ballooning corruption scandal surrounding lobbyist Jack Abramoff, and the indictment of several administration officials--the Republicans are able to carry their programs through the Senate with virtually no opposition from the Democrats.

    The Democratic Congressional leadership has sought to apologize for its spineless surrender by citing the Republicans' 55-45 majority in the upper house. But there is no question that if the roles were reversed the Republicans would be far more aggressive and provocative in the minority than the Democrats have been in relationship to Bush's agenda. Moreover, the last major action carried out by the Democrats when they did control a similarly narrow majority in the Senate was the infamous vote in October 2002 to authorize Bush to wage war on Iraq, which passed overwhelmingly by a vote of 77 to 23, a margin tellingly similar to the margin by which the Alito nomination was cleared for a final vote.

    This can be explained only by the fact that the Democrats have no real opposition to the policies of war, attacks on democratic rights, the assault on social programs, and, in general, the entire policy of the American ruling class. Indeed, on all of these questions, the Democrats have facilitated the Republicans in carrying out a right-wing agenda.

    The future's here, we are it, we are on our own.

    by Frank Roberts on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:19:47 AM PST

  •  The sad thing is . . . (none)
    With 42 no votes, we could have put the Gang of 14 to the test at least.

    "Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we. They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we."=GWB

    by BTP on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:20:42 AM PST

  •  The Bottom Line (none)
    This fight wasn't lost today. And it wasn't lost yesterday. It was lost on November 2, 2004 when voters in rural Ohio thought the most pressing issue facing America was gay weddings.

    Until we find a way to invert the priorities of the Midwest and South, this is going to be a very tough struggle for a very, very long time.

    It's pretty hard to reach people who would rather have a Constitutional Amendment banning flag-burning than have a good job, quality healthcare, safe streets, and a chance for their children and grandchildren to go to college.

    It's pretty hard to reach people who would rather absorb a miserable economy and doom themselves to a life working at Wal-Mart or Taco Bell than allow women to have reproductive freedom.

    It's pretty hard to reach people who -- from the comfort of their trailer home -- enthusiastically support tax cuts for Paris Hilton, but don't care that Bush refuses to push for an increase in the minimum wage.

    It's pretty hard to reach people who think Evolution is witchcraft, global warming needs more study, and Terri Schiavo -- with a few more prayers -- would be preparing to ski in the Winter Olympics if evil liberals hadn't killed her.

    Like all of you, I hate this with every ounce of my being. This isn't the country I grew up in. And it's a very dark time for all of us who care about responsibility, accountability, and (most importantly) the truth.

    We can bitch until the end of time about how a handful of Democrats may of voted on Alito, but the real problem we face is considerably larger.

    I'm a man who discovered the wheel and built the Eiffel Tower out of metal and brawn -- Ron Burgundy

    by IndyScott on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:31:21 AM PST

  •  stop complaining (3.00)
    if you want a supreme court to  your liking start winning presidential elections.the democrats never made the supreme court an issue in 2004 so this is what you get!lets just wait and see how alito votes before saying we were right.i would worry more about the next selection than this one!
  •  question....since they are confirmed by the Senate (none)
    can Justices of the Supreme Court be Impeached?  I seem to remember hearing somewhere that they can.

    Give me Liberty or give me death! (-6.88, -6.15)

    by guyermo on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:37:30 AM PST

    •  Yes. (none)
      Indeed, any federal judge may be impeached by the House and convicted by the Senate. The only difference between a judicial and presidential impeachment trial is that in the former the Chief Justice is not constitutionally required to preside.
  •  I just sent this e-mail to Lieberman... (none)
    ...but the Senate server is suspiciously down. Feel free to copy, or whatever.

    Senator Lieberman:
    Your constituents are the citizens of Connecticut, not the "Gang of 14." I'm embarrassed that you would try to dupe us, through your floor speeches and press releases, into thinking that your roll call vote today mattered. We both know that your cloture vote was a blank check to send Sam Alito to the Supreme Court. I've had it with my party's attempts to toe the middle ground. I once voted with pride to send you to the vice-presidency, but now I have pledged $100 to Ned Lamont and am encouraging others to do the same. We are a progressive state, Senator. Please respect that.

  •  It's All About the White House (none)
    The White House is what really counts.  Gotta have that in 2008.  With Alito on the court, that's true now more than ever.
    •  concentrate on 2006 (none)
      we have to start in the states first, to get dems back in the house, plus you have to be one step ahead of this fascist party, their next target will be the renewal of infamous Patriot Act, and where do people get off that this President is protecting Americans, that is just BS. Fear and more Fear.
  •  Alito's Coronation Is Political Theater (none)
    From the wonderfully dependable SCOTUSblog:

    Immediately after the Senate vote Tuesday, it became obvious that the White House, not the Supreme Court, was making the decisions on when Alito would take his oaths of office and begin his service. The Supreme Court's public information office had no information to release on that question, but the White House publicity operation was telling reporters that Alito would take the oath from Chief Justice Roberts at the Supreme Court this afternoon, and that Alito would also take an oath at a White House ceremony on Wednesday.

    Further demonstrating that Tuesday's events were political rather than judicial in nature, Judge Alito and his family reportedly watched the final vote while sitting in the Roosevelt Room at the White House. The White House also was saying that Alito would attend the President's State of the Union message at the Capitol on Tuesday night. In recent years, only a single member of the Court, Justice Stephen G. Breyer, has attended the State of the Union gathering in the House chamber, with some Justices regarding attendance at such an event of political theater to be inappropriate for a sitting judge.

  •  Snowe/Collins to NARAL: Go fu*k yourself (none)
    Ok, NARAL, Snowe and Collins just told you, in no uncertain terms to GO FUCK YOURSELF

    Got it, NARAL, you stupid jerks:

    Snowe and Collins just looked you in eye and told you to DROP DEAD.

    Great job, NARAL...

    I did not receive $ from Ketchum, U.S. Department of Ed or HHS to write this---though I wish I had.

    by Volvo Liberal on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 09:43:35 AM PST

    •  19 Dems to NARAL and Women: Drop Dead (none)
      Sadly, in the case of reproductive rights and health, the dead dead is literal. The real opportunity was yesterday. Today was just kabuki.
      .
      Why doesn't it surprise me that the NARAL straw (wo)man was dragged out again to deflect from a deep-rooted failure within the Dem party.
      .
      At dKos, it's invoked the same way BushCo invokes 9/11 to excuse every shortcoming. Other so-called special interest groups don't receive the same scrutiny for endorsements -- or scapegoating.
      .
      This appalling combination of denial and misogyny is bad enough on its own, but particularly bad when the so-called Dem 'mainstream' needs to get its head out of its ass and give voters more than a cardboard opposition for Repugs to punch out in a photo op.
      .
      Until Dems change this losing attitude, I think the chances of taking back Senate or the House in '06 are slim, but I hope they get a wake up call some new blood injects some sense into the party.
      .
  •  Armando, Good job. Even in a loss you know (none)
    how to set a proper tone. You must have won most of your jury trial. I am assuming that you are trial lawyer. Thanks anyway.

    Hey, we have bigger fish to fry in the next two years, that is to position Clark as a formidable candidate he is. I will strongly advocate that you play a prominent role this time in his campaign. Thanks again.

    We did not lose; we got everyone's attention and maintained 42 votes against Alito. As a result we may get rid of people like Joe Lieberman and Mary Landrieu

  •  Yes, But (none)
    That's it.  It wasn't always this way.  ND had a two-term democratic governor in the 1970s and a two-term democratic governor in the 1980s.  Statewide offices were held by the likes of Conrad and Dorgan the Pomeroy brothers and others.  But, in the last fifteen years, the party has shriveled up.
  •  Byrd (none)
    I just don't understand. If Robert Byrd is such a spitfire when it comes to the Constitution, handing out mini-copies of it to everyone within a 3 foot radius, why in the hell would he vote FOR Alito?

    What's in it for him?

    •  Byrd (none)
      He wants  the (now ) Justice Alito to pay attention to religious rights.

       "I told him that I believe the Supreme Court has gone too far in prohibiting the free exercise of religion in our country. He listened respectfully and said that he understood. He did not pledge to overrule precedent, but he made it clear that he understood and respected my opinion." Robert Byrd- Floor speech.

    •  Incoming on the Right (none)
      I heard Byrd switched because there's a rich right-winger opposing him in the Dem. primary.  Thus he can't count on automatic re-election.
  •  All about Mary (none)
    As a Louisianian let me come to the defense of Mary (just a little bit).  You all must understand that this state is really fucked up, politically and economically.  I hate to say it but the people down here sometimes don't what's best for them.  Thusly, Mary, or anybody who can be tagged as leeebrul, walks a fine line here.  The people, IF THEY ACTUALLY KNEW WHAT ALITO WAS ALL ABOUT, would probably not like him all that much.  Unfortunately it doesn't take much to divert their attention away from the things that really matter and on to an issue that just stirs up their passions....and causes them to vote stupid.

    With the exodus of people out of NO you can expect this state to turn blood red over the next few years, if they don't come back.  Gov. Blanco and Mary are probably both going to have a hard time with re-election.

  •  Alito I will se you on Sundays (none)
    Alito, you have a chance to prove to us that

    You are not a Butcher,

    I mean a bloody butcher

    Butcher just like Bush, I pray not

    But always remember, I am catholic also, although not practicing

    But I will come and seat next to you at mass on Sunday

    Can't wait to pinch you Old Lady's ass, I can see her freeze already

    So if you want to pray in peace, just ask your priest when in need. he will tell you, just don't ask him.

    Don't ask the priest about women rights, not long ago rumor were that some were playing with the quire boys. That is a No No.

    Women, that, they don't know about

    Alito you must remember, if you get wacko, on Sundays I will be seating next to your old lady.

    And that I will pleasure, oh ya

    And when you find a Neocon

    Fire him, that simple, and yes they are everywhere.

    We will point them out to you,

    Oh ya, it is going to be Funnnnnnnnnnn, oh ya

  •  Snatches (none)
    Way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory, Dems.  

    If we filibustered, it would force them to look weak.  We would've looked strong, commmitted, in a way the public hasn't seen before now.  We'd be standing up for our values.  We'd completely trash the SOTU speech and any Bush bounce.  It would've been a major political upset.

    Would we get another crazy nominee?  Sure.  But you fight the fights in front of you - that's what Republicans have taught us.  Could they have used the nuclear option?  Sure -- but lord, what is the filibuster for?  What are we saving it for - 2039?  We can only fiibuster when Republicans say it's OK?  What's more important than this?  Insane.  The filibuster is meant to be used for extreme nominations, and in this poisinois, dangerous time for our country, the time to stop Alito was now.  This is the Iraq War vote all over again -- it will be haunting us for decades.

    With the 06 elections so incredibly critical to the future of our nation, we need to make bold stances like this.  Instead, the public sees words like "fizzle" and "defeated."

    •  Every election is critical (none)
      I'm getting a little sick of people saying "this election is critical" or "that election is critical."

      Every election is critical. Local, state, federal, primary; for President and dog catcher, councilman and Congressman, Governor and comptroller. Every time you get a chance to pick people to hold office, it's critical that you get out there and vote. Even if you lose, you're making your voice heard.

      Like you said, you fight the battle that's in front of you with lessons learned from battles past. Are the Republicans just tougher than the Dems? Is that why they control our governments, federal and several states?

      They're not tougher than me, I can tell you that much. I'll keep fighting for what I know is right until we win or I die. And I'll fight knowing that the tide can turn at any minute, so long as I keep fighting.

      Are they tougher than you?

      We are Americans. We are better than this.

      by The Icelander on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 10:27:44 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Dissent will not be tolerated here (1.12)
    I have twice posted a comment about the Alito vote and twice it has been deleted, I guess by moderators of this site. I'll try one more time to see if I can get past your censors.

    The Alito vote that just went down was not about Alito to anyone but folks like you. Harry Reid came right out last week and said it was about embarrassing Bush by getting as many "no" votes as possible.

    Harry is very aware that a filibuster of Alito would have backfired in a huge way on the Democratic party and helped the Republicans and Bush recover from several months of bad news.

    Alito and Roberts replacing Rehnquest and O'Connor has pushed the SCOTUS a tiny amount to the right. Not enough to matter except for the most esoteric of issues. All the apocalyptic warnings are just plain silly.

    Since your moderators won't tolerate me posting my opinion of the comments on this thread and how they are seen by the rest of the world, I guess I'll have to forego myself that pleasure. Oh well, I am sure that it is much easier to believe what you want to believe when you suppress differing opinions. Sigh, even that may get me censored again...

    Your biggest fear should not be Alito replacing O'Connor, it should be Janice Roger Brown replacing Stevens. And that scenario is quite possible, Stevens is 86 years old and has been making noise about retiring.

    •  oh look, a martyr (none)
      I found nothing offensive about the content of your take on the Alito nomination, but cry me an effing river full of Mrs. Alito tears about censorship and tolerance of viewpoints. Try posting a liberal viewpoint on a board in Freeperville and see how long it lasts. Nice try.

      JRB would be filibustered.

    •  A Troll, is a troll, is a troll, and (none)
      considering your new comment didn't offer anything substantial again, but a bunch of whining, I'd like to get it out of the way.
    •  Your rhetoric is the problem (none)
      I think that the opinions your stating seem to be reasonable opinions to hold, and you could very well be right about Alito and Stevens. My own suspicion is that Roberts will be a really good justice and that Alito will be fine.

      On the other hand:

      • You've got to admit that Armando did a great job of organizing opposition to Alito. If I were a senator, I probably would have voted to confirm Alito back when Alito was nominated, but by Monday, I probably would have voted for cloture (if I weren't afraid my vote would bring on the nuclear option) just because I think Armando did such a great job of throwing gravel in the gears of the Republican steamroller.

      • You're drawing fire here partly because you're wording your views in a way that seems to be designed to draw fire. But my guess is that, deep down, you want the United States to continue to have a two-party (or multi-party) representational democracy; that, no matter what you think about abortion, you don't want women dying from coat hangar abortions; that you want any babies who are born to be treated well; that you've never actually seen any normal liberal or progressive person burn a flag in your life (personally, I can't even light a lighter); that you don't really want Jewish kids to be mocked for refusing to say the Lord's Prayer; that you might be turned off by homosexuality but don't really want gay people put in prison; and that you want the Iraq war to end us quickly as possible in a way that minimizes the risk of genocide in Iraq. In other words: you're an American! Most us here are Americans. We ought to be able to discuss the issues that do divide us while recognizing that we agree on a lot of stuff.

      I think that a lot of us here (and even a lot of fairly conservative Republicans) are scared not so much because (surprise!) conservatives are conservative and appoint conservative Supreme Court justices, but because it seems as if Bush and Karl Rove are hostile toward the normal checks and balances that restrict what the Executive Branch can do. Is Bush just trying to deal with the threat of terrorism as best as he can? Well, maybe. But I think we have a duty to hold his feet to the fire whenever he tries to sell that kind of  arrangement. If Bush were out of office and debating all of this in a neutral fashion, I think that he'd concede that he ought to have an Armando holding his feet to the fire on these sorts of matters. And, even if Bush really does mean well, how do we know that some successor (Hillary Clinton!!!!!! raaarrrrr!!! now are you shaking?) might use the legal precedents he's set to do bad things?

      So, OK, I don't think you should be troll rated just for being conservative, but I think you can catch a lot more flies with honey than with vinegar.

    •  Oh and by the way (none)
      We don't need moderators.

      Comments don't get deleted they get zero'd out by other users who find comments offensive. I'm sure that concept is difficult for you to imagine.

      I went through and found only one of your comments and it included this gem:

      www.dailykos.com :

      "I love reading Daily KOS, it is good to see what is going on in the fever swamp. Your predictability in these things is only exceeded by your vulgarity. I wonder sometimes if many of you ever thing about your kids one day reading your posts."

      I'm sure a similar statement about Free Republic posted there would last about 2 seconds.

      The Republicans have a fundamental problem with telling the truth - Howard Dean.

      by NYC Sophia on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 01:31:22 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Hey genius... (none)
      ...did you ever bother to figure out how this place works when you decided to ride in here on your...what is it that trolls ride these days?

      Your comment wasn't deleted. See, trusted users -- typically people who aren't Rethug asskissing automatons -- can rate your comments below the standard 1-4 scale. If your comment has been rated by at least two people and the average rating is below 1 -- in other words, if trusted users believe you're just wasting bandwidth -- your comment is hidden such that only trusted users can see it.

      You are a troll. For the uneducated, a troll is about as far as you can get from a trusted user. And as long as you continue to be insulting, disingenuous, or otherwise wasting time, space, and bandwidth, your comments will continue to be hidden from trolls like you.

      Thwarting the forces of conservatism since 1978. -7.63, -5.64

      by wiscmass on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 03:37:42 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  God help us all. (none)
    Working our asses off to help win seats this winter is now more important than ever.

    "In a time of universal deceit - telling the truth is a revolutionary act." - George Orwell

    by Five of Diamonds on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 10:32:35 AM PST

  •  I just love you guys (none)
    who lay the blame on the American people like they can't do anything but watch American Idol or go skiing in the Alps or something.

    Now I laugh and make a fortune off the same ones that I torture and a world says, "Kiss me, son of god." ~ They Might Be Giants

    by misscee on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 10:59:37 AM PST

    •  Blame is there to be had. (none)
      It depends upon what the blame is for.

      Do I blame the American people for Alito, directly?

      Well, Bush nominated him.  The people that voted, in majority, voted for Bush.  Many of those that voted for him would have wanted exactly this nominee, though not all.  Many THINK they want Alito, not really educated about his record.  They know he's a smart guy.  He is.  But there are a lot of smart people in the judiciary.

      The American people voted for their individual Senators.  So yes, there's blame to be had there too.

      The reason that people vote against their own interests is, indeed, because they are more interested in the next distraction...blonde girls missing in Aruba, who will win American Idol, the next stunt on Fear Factor.

      Yes, I blame them for being as uncurious as the President many of them voted for.  They believe everything they are spoonfed by the corporate media, who in turn only tell them what their corporate owners and Administration guidance WANTS the people to hear.

      The people don't question what they are told, so they don't realize a lot of it is bunk.

      Their crime is ignorance, but yes, I blame them, at least partly.  I also blame the corporatization and conglomeration of the media, and how much it bends to the whims of partisan politics..no, not to thel iberal left but the right -- who, since they are wholly in power and have no political check to speak of, should be questioning everything, not blindly going along.

      This country is broken, and Americans -- all of us -- let it happen.  Many of us are trying their damndest to wake others up, but most people just do not care.  So long as they get their next toy or trinket or whatever and have someone telling them everything is ok, they will just blindly go along doing the same old thing...

      Sorry for the rant.  Guess I have a lot built up.

      "There's no question that the minute I got elected, the storm clouds on the horizon were getting nearly directly overhead." - GWB, 5/11/01

      by Stymnus on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 11:45:53 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  And by the way... (none)
      If the part about skiing in the Alps was a dig at Kerry...that's another example of what I'm talking about.  Kerry is/was at an economic conference there...DOING HIS JOB...and he is sniped by the so-called liberal media, and most damningly the White House itself (McClellan) for supposely trying to chime in 'from the slopes' as if he's on vacation and can't be bothered to come back.

      I'm sick and tired of it.  And if that was your intent, I hope you realize you're part of the problem.

      "There's no question that the minute I got elected, the storm clouds on the horizon were getting nearly directly overhead." - GWB, 5/11/01

      by Stymnus on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 11:49:44 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Oh please (none)
        spare me your dribble. He certainly wasn't mounting a filibuster.

         I hope you realize you're part of the problem.

        Another expert. I don't even pretend to be right. I just give opinions. IMHO you are the problem.  

        Now I laugh and make a fortune off the same ones that I torture and a world says, "Kiss me, son of god." ~ They Might Be Giants

        by misscee on Wed Feb 01, 2006 at 07:45:28 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Making today's vote matter more (none)
    Here's how to make todays vote matter more.  Keep track of every word Alito writes, every decision he makes.  When he makes a decision that weakens consumer protections, make sure every consumer advocacy group know about it and remind them who voted to confirm Alito.  Ditto with civil rights champions, minority religion anti-defamation groups, privacy advocates, etc.

    Any opinion Alito expresses in support of Executive privilege or the weakening of Separation of Powers should be publicized as much as possible, along with a reminder of who voted to confirm Alito.

    Also, there should be an effort to push Roe v. Wade test cases to SCOTUS as quickly as possible.  Let's find out where Alito and Roberts stand.  I believe the GOP wants to keep Roe v. Wade in order to continue using it as a wedge.

    I used to live in the United States of America. Now I live in a homeland.

    by homeland observer on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 11:23:57 AM PST

  •  PUT RAT POISON (none)
    IN HIS RAVIOLI

    (just joking)

    (Thank you Anne Coulter for teaching us rights we never
    knew we had)

  •  i know this is rude (none)
    and i'm sorry, but landrieu is a quintessential twit.

    weather forecast

    The palaces of kings are built upon the ruins of the bowers of paradise. - Paine

    by Cedwyn on Tue Jan 31, 2006 at 01:48:56 PM PST

  •  supreme court (none)
    and what is that you on the left think you have acconmplished wth your rantings and ravings and obstructionist ttactics? 25 repeat 25 senators in an openly usless moronic vote attempted a filibuster that no one in the democratic senate wanted. 25% thats 25% percent of the U. S. senate that voted for this childish exhibit of anger.That per centage is probalby a good indication of the overall support for the democratic base. What you have accomplished by the attempted obstruction of the alito nomination is made it impossible for any liberal supreme court nominee (that is if the democrates actually ever win on the national scene again)to be nominated. Obama got it right when he said that the democrats rely to much on procedual grounds to thwart the will of the majority party. the things that have been done by the left will come back to haunt you if god forbid the democrats return to power .
  •  Refuge, Part Deux... (none)
    Kos,

    Considering the fact that KnotIookin's madly in love with you, I felt a formal introduction would be appropriate:

    http://www.notperformanceart.com/...

    WHEW!  If THAT face doesn't turn your stomach, you're right where you belong!  She makes Janet Reno look like your mother!  Wait, I think maybe Janet Reno IS your mother....never mind.

  •  Heads Up: Vichy Dems Post-Filibuster Plan Underway (none)
    I hate to tell everyone this, but Vichy Dems ain't done yet. Not by a long shot.

    Today we've got our POST-FILIBUSTER GAME PLAN, PART I up and in play. It's simple: contact every Senator who did vote our way, repeatedly, at their DC and district offices and emails, and say "thank you." Good manners, yes. Reinforces good behavior, yes. And it also reinforces the reality, new to many politicians, that there are substantial numbers of voters our here who PAY ATTENTION to WHO voted HOW. We don't just groan at the outcome. We analyze it, and dole out rewards and punishments.

    So calling and saying thank you -- a lot of times -- with the same sort of doggedness we possessed before the cloture vote -- is an important part of our advocacy plan to take back our Party, our Congress and our nation. You're sick and tired of making phone calls? Me, too. Now get thee to http://vichydems.blogspot.com and do it anyway.

    Thanks!

  •  But if you don't like Alito, it's easy (none)
    Start winning some elections.  The fact of the matter is, you are in the minority in this country, don't you get it?

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