I know this may be somewhat off key, but I am sorry, this kind of stupid thinking
from Democrats on the issue of the Supreme Court and "values" voters irks me no end:
Sen. Kent Conrad, a Democrat from North Dakota, sounds like a swooning Republican when he talks about Supreme Court nominee John G. Roberts Jr. "I am impressed with his demeanor, his intelligence, his sense of humor, his modesty," said Conrad. "Absent some bombshell, which I don't expect, I think he will be confirmed and quite handily." Praise like this is bad news for the nearly 30 liberal special interest groups calling on Democrats to block Roberts's rise to the Supreme Court. But it is good politics for Democrats such as Conrad who are running for reelection in states that President Bush won, according to several senators and strategists.
I don't know North Dakota, but I can't imagine North Dakotans in large numbers like the government intruding in their bedrooms, or the SCOTUS telling Congress it can't act against violent crime against women and against guns in schools. It seems to me that North Dakotans expect better than that from their federal government.
And this is precisely what the upcoming Supreme Court battles are about. But tell that to DC Democrats:
"You are going to be arguing about issues that we all saw Democrats paid a heavy price for in the last election," said Leon Panetta, a former Democratic House member who served as Bill Clinton's White House chief of staff. "Democrats have a tremendous opportunity right now to hit Bush where he's weak, which is on oil prices and the war. [Oh yeah? And who is doing that pray tell Leon?] Don't hit him where he's strong, which is these values issues."
No he is not. What is the evidence for this view? Who said so? This is simply nonsense. Moreover, for voters who do care deeply, one way or other, is there any doubt what Party they will likely vote for? I say likely, because if Dems sell out their base, with an off year election coming up, when base motivation is critical, then we'll see how "values" cuts for Dems who don't fight for Dem values. Ralph Neas gets it right:
Ralph G. Neas, a leading advocate for Roberts's defeat, says polling conducted for his group and others shows moderates and independents -- widely considered the swing voters in elections -- strongly oppose Roberts's judicial views on the rights of women and minorities and court deference to presidential power.
Neas, president of the liberal People for the American Way, says the only way Democrats can successfully carry this message into the election is if the majority of them vote against Roberts -- and then cite his rulings as evidence of a conservative court usurping the freedoms of individuals. "Those Democrats who vote for Roberts would miss the opportunity to criticize with credibility Bush, Republicans and the court because they were complicit in his confirmation," said Neas.
It goes without saying that some Dem Senators, like Ben Nelson of Nebraska, have special situations that may require different approaches. But these are the exception, not the rule.