Skip to comments.GOP: CAN WE PLEASE DO IT LIKE GINSBURG? [Byron York]
Posted on 07/21/2005 2:56:40 PM PDT by doug from upland
GOP: CAN WE PLEASE DO IT LIKE GINSBURG? [Byron York]
Look for Republicans to point to the confirmations of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Stephen Breyer as models of the process that should be employed in the effort to replace Sandra Day O'Connor. Both Ginsburg and Breyer were nominated and confirmed at a time (1993-1994) in which the president's party -- Democrats -- also controlled the Senate. And both were given relatively easy passage through the Senate because the minority party -- Republicans -- cooperated with Democrats to ensure a quick confirmation. Ginsburg was nominated on June 14, 1993 and confirmed by the Senate on August 3, 1993. Breyer was nominated on May 13, 1994 and confirmed on July 29, 1994.
They moved with such speed because Republicans, in particular Sen. Orrin Hatch, the ranking GOP member on the Senate Judiciary Committee at the time, declined to challenge their records. Ginsburg, in particular, received something of a bye from Republicans despite her former position as general counsel of the American Civil Liberties Union; had they chosen to, Republicans could have hung every extreme ACLU position around Ginsburg's neck. Instead, "Sen. Hatch put an orderly and fair process above scoring political points," says one high-ranking staffer involved at the time. "It ensured that the Senate's conduct of the hearings was constructive rather than divisive."
Republicans also chose not to oppose Ginsburg even though she refused to answer dozens of questions during her confirmation hearings. Among others, she declined to give her views on Roe v. Wade, on the Second Amendment, on the death penalty, on the Voting Rights Act, on race-based congressional redistricting, and on adoption rights for gay couples, among many other issues. At one point in her hearings, Republican Sen. Strom Thurmond told her, "In preparing these questions or any others I may propound during the hearings, if you feel they are inappropriate to answer, will you speak out and say so." On another occasion, Thurmond said, "I will not press you to answer any that you feel are inappropriate."
Not surprisingly, Democrats wholeheartedly agreed. Then-chairman Sen. Joseph Biden told Ginsburg, "You not only have a right to choose what you will answer and not answer, but in my view you should not answer a question of what your view will be on an issue that clearly is going to come before the court in 50 forms probably, over your tenure on the court."
Of course, Republicans today realize that Democrats, now the minority party, will never extend to a Bush nominee the sort of treatment the GOP gave Ginsburg in 1993. Nevertheless, they will tell the story over and over, in hopes that someone will listen.
"They should have just flushed Satan-Ginsburg's nomination down the toilet."
I agree the Pubs would have never filibustered, but just how could 43 of them stopped Ginsburg?
They wouldn't have had to nuke the pubs. Chafee, Sp[ectre, and Snow gladly would've voted to end a filibuster.
With one caveat:
The same way the Dems have been filibustering, making a mockery of the approval process, and scaring the crap out of the Pubbies.
I didn't consider that.
Let's see: 57 + 3 = 60.
Yep, you're right, it adds up. Closure. No nuke needed.
Considering the source, he probably meant Roberts was the smartest dresser in every room.