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Kohl, Feingold defend filibuster decision (With apologies from Wisconsin)
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel ^ | 02/12/03 | CRAIG GILBERT

Posted on 02/12/2003 10:03:37 AM PST by UB355

Washington - Wisconsin Sens. Herb Kohl and Russ Feingold defended the decision by Democrats to delay a quick vote on the nomination of Miguel Estrada to the federal bench, saying Tuesday that Estrada's failure to answer repeated questions about his philosophy undermined the Senate's advise and consent role.

"To thumb his nose and say, 'Look, I won't tell you anything about me, what my judicial philosophy is, but I want your vote,' seems to me and to us unfair," Kohl said.

Kohl said Senate Democrats were "sending a message" to the White House that while the GOP controls the executive and legislative branches, "let's be reasonable. . . . This is not a dictatorship."

Democrats said that because Estrada had not served as a judge and had no judicial record, it was necessary and appropriate to hear his views on the way the courts had handled important cases.

Kohl said it was obvious that Estrada "has opinions on these things, so why didn't he answer (our questions)? Their position is, 'Screw you guys, we don't need to answer.' Our position is that's not fair."

Estrada is a member of the law firm that represented Bush in his successful Supreme Court fight for the presidency in 2000. He has practiced constitutional law and has argued 15 cases before the high court.

As did Kohl, Feingold cited what he said was Estrada's failure to talk to the Senate Judiciary Committee about past Supreme Court rulings and about his judicial philosophy and opinions.

"That's not the way nominees have responded in the past. We don't have anything to go on, whether or not this person is going to conduct himself as a judge or whether he is going to be an ideologue," Feingold said.

"It destroys the process of advice and consent. There is a constitutional role the Senate is supposed to play," Feingold said. "If we're not given basic information, we can't get any sense of where they stand. They'll just send up all kinds of people that have no record, and there won't be any really meaningful review process. . . . They just want us to rubber-stamp everybody."

Both senators sit on the Judiciary Committee, and both voted against Estrada in that committee last year, citing the same concerns about his responsiveness to the panel's questions.

Both suggested the delaying tactics that Democrats are adopting in this case should be used only in special cases for judicial nominations. Feingold said, "This one is turning out to be of that significance."

Kohl said: "It's not as though this is some kind of strategy the Democrats are going to employ on every judge. This is a guy who came along with no record and doesn't want to talk about it. It's really extraordinary."

The Wisconsin Republican Party issued a statement Tuesday criticizing Feingold on the Estrada nomination, calling an announced Democratic filibuster a "crude partisan game that would deny this highly qualified nominee a chance to serve on one of the highest courts in the land."

Feingold is up for re-election next year.


TOPICS: Government; US: Wisconsin
KEYWORDS: estrada; fillibuster
senator_Kohl@kohl.senate.gov

Russell_Feingold@feingold.senate.gov

1 posted on 02/12/2003 10:03:38 AM PST by UB355
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To: UB355
I hope everyone keeps in mind when spending retail dollars that Kohl's Department Stores are part of Senator Herb Kohl's holdings.

It's just one of the reasons why my wife and I don't do business with them.

Semper Fi
2 posted on 02/12/2003 10:07:24 AM PST by dd5339 (Home schooling is education, not indoctrination!)
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To: UB355
More garbage from the wealthy socialist elite...Herbie Kohl and Crust Feingold
3 posted on 02/12/2003 10:07:54 AM PST by joesnuffy
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To: All
Face it, this is about one thing. The DEMS don't want anyone they don't already have IN THEIR POCKET in any office!
4 posted on 02/12/2003 10:13:14 AM PST by UCANSEE2
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To: UB355
As I am from wisconsin I must state I am so sorry. We will fix the situation as soon as we can we are able ('04). Again I ask accept my humble apologies, we are already aware of the problem and will have it under control soon.
5 posted on 02/12/2003 10:18:15 AM PST by Sinner6 (Communism is a cancer)
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To: Sinner6
I am also from Wisconsin.

Forget emailing Finegold; he won't respond. He routinely stiffs his constituents here in the Western rural areas, sends aides to conduct *listening sessions* and if you take the time to write letters that spell out your position on any legislation, you receive boiler plate press releases in return, as though no one even read the letter, which addressed the press release itself, point-by-point.

Is there a viable Republican contender for Finegold's seat who would have a chance in Madison or Milwaukee or could win so conclusively out state that Madison/Milwaukee could be neutralized? Please feel free to FReepmail me if there is. Links would be helpful.


6 posted on 02/12/2003 10:26:12 AM PST by reformedliberal
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To: UB355
Estrada can't say anything about his "opinions" because it's a litmus test. Unless he says yes to abortion, no to guns and the death penalty he's toast. I really hate the democrats more with each passing year.
7 posted on 02/12/2003 10:27:59 AM PST by Sender (-A strange game. The only winning move is not to play. -WOPR-)
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To: UB355
Estrada will uphold The Constitution of The United States of America. That stance is completely unacceptable to the democrats.
8 posted on 02/12/2003 10:33:39 AM PST by TruthShallSetYouFree
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To: reformedliberal
Sure agree with you about Feingold! I wrote him a couple months ago and yesterday received a letter from him that addressed a totally different subject. What a joke! What part of Wisconsin do you live in? I'm in Milwaukee.
9 posted on 02/12/2003 10:40:43 AM PST by Wait4Truth (God Bless our President!)
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To: reformedliberal
I'm from western Wi also and am sick to my stomach of Kohl and Feingold also. I hope Tommy Thompson is sick of Washington next year and comes home to run against Feinstiengold. Did you ever notice that Jewish Dem politicians are the least supportive of actions that would help Israel, yet the Jewish voters give them close to 90% of their vote.
10 posted on 02/12/2003 10:51:38 AM PST by MCRD
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To: Sender
At one time, it was the Democrats screaming bloody murder that the Republicans had a litmus test for judicial nominations and that wasn't right.

Prior to the Bork hearings, ideological questions were considered improper. Even during the Bork hearings, he refused to answer how he would rule on pending issues for obvious reasons. Bork agreed to an examination of his record, including his published works, because that was in the public domain.

The Democrats position now is that they have a right to know how potential judges / justices would rule on cases so they can confirm or deny based on that. A blatant violation of separation of powers and a total disregard for over 200 years of established precedent in how this is handled.

Quick vote? He was nominated on May 9, 2001!

This is all about keep the donations rolling in from the fringe Left. Too bad it won't be enough money to counteract Dubya's fund raising ability and avoid further losses in '04.
11 posted on 02/12/2003 11:02:06 AM PST by You Dirty Rats
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To: Wait4Truth
Rural Vernon County. Lived in Milwaukee for 10 years and left in 1974.
12 posted on 02/12/2003 11:03:31 AM PST by reformedliberal
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To: MCRD
I am Jewish and I think that is starting to change. Most people who vote Democrat are voting on domestic/social issues, IMO.

Why does anyone vote for Kohl, who spends most of his time in Wyoming? Finegold is Daschle's b!+(h. It is the leftist vote that keeps them in power, plus the Republicans in my county are run by an opportunist who ran on the Republican ticket to fool the little old ladies who vote a straight ticket. The papers are owned by Lee Enterprises and are NOT conservative. I have asked the RNC to pay attention to our local Party organization and to please spend some money and time running someone we could vote for. W/o a conservative media, however, it is doubly difficult to even get fair coverage.
13 posted on 02/12/2003 11:09:53 AM PST by reformedliberal
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To: dd5339
Kohl's Dept Stores are not owned by WI Sen. Kohl. The Kohl family sold those off many years ago to some private investors, just as they sold off their food stores to A&P.
14 posted on 02/12/2003 11:10:06 AM PST by RicocheT
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To: RicocheT
Last I had heard, (1999?) the Kohl family was still involved in the department store. I chose to boycott due to Herb's comments regarding MicroSofts products.

If they've sold out then thanks for the update!

Semper Fi
15 posted on 02/12/2003 11:21:57 AM PST by dd5339 (Home schooling is education, not indoctrination!)
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To: UB355
Thanks for the apologies.

Thanks for the email addresses, too. They will be hearing from me. I am sick of the double standards employed by "our" senators. Russ always wants to be seen as being the fashionably contrary one. I wish he'd listen to people outside of Madison.
16 posted on 02/12/2003 1:58:33 PM PST by lorrainer (WISCONSIN--Eat Cheese or Die)
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To: UB355
"To thumb his nose and say, 'Look, I won't tell you anything about me, what my judicial philosophy is, but I want your vote,' seems to me and to us unfair," Kohl said.

So be a man and vote against him, you lying sack of ****.

17 posted on 02/12/2003 2:01:38 PM PST by Sloth
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To: dd5339
Thanks, I didn't know that about Kohl's stores.
18 posted on 02/12/2003 2:03:22 PM PST by Rodney King (No, we can't all just get along.)
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To: reformedliberal
Kohl said Senate Democrats were "sending a message" to the White House that while the GOP controls the executive and legislative branches, "let's be reasonable. . . . This is not a dictatorship."

Dictatorship...Words by senators are usually chosen pretty carefully. Seeing as we are about to enter a war with a dictator, I find Kohl's use of this term offensive. When Dems say something, often, they mean the exact opposite...
19 posted on 02/12/2003 2:10:45 PM PST by votelife
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To: RicocheT
Kohl's Dept Stores are not owned by WI Sen. Kohl. The Kohl family sold those off many years ago to some private investors, just as they sold off their food stores to A&P.

That's good news.

20 posted on 02/12/2003 2:13:26 PM PST by Dr. Scarpetta
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To: UB355
Dear President Bush,
With the Surpeme Court session getting ready to close, it may well be time for perhaps the most important domestic decision of your presidency: the appointment of a Supreme Court Justice(s). The main reason why I supported you in 2000 and why I wanted Daschle out of power in 02 (and 04) has to do with the courts. I want America courts to interpret law, not write law. During your presidential campaign you said Thomas and Scalia were your two model justices. Those are excellent models. The High Court needs more like them. Clarence Thomas recently said to students that the tough cases were when what he wanted to do was different from what the law said. And he goes by the law. This should be a model philosophy for our justices. Your father, President Bush lost his reelection campaign for 3 main reasosn, as far as I can see. 1. he broke the no new taxes pledge 2. David Souter 3. Clinton convinced people we were in a Bush recession (which we had already come out of by the time Clinton was getting sworn in)

I urge you to learn from all three of these: 1. on taxes, you're doing great. Awesome job on the tax cut. 2. good job so far on judicial appointments. I want to see more of a fight for Estrada, Owen, and Pickering, but I commend you on your nominations. 3. by staying engaged in the economic debate you'll serve yourself well

I have been thoroughly impressed with your handling of al Queida, Iraq, and terrorism. You have inspired confidence and have shown great leadership.

But I want to remind you that your Supreme Court pick(s) will be with us LONG after you have departed office. I urge you to avoid the tempation to find a "compromise" pick. Go for a Scalia or Thomas. Don't go for an O'Connor or Kennedy. To be specific, get someone who is pro-life. Roe v Wade is one of the worst court decisions I know of, and it's the perfect example of unrestrained judicial power.

I know the temptation will be tremendous on you to nominate a moderate. But remember who your true supporters are. I am not a important leader or politician. I am "simply" a citizen who has been an enthusiatic supporter of you. I am willing to accept compromise in many areas of government but I will watch your Court nomiantions extremely closely. What the Senate Dems are doing right now is disgusting, but as the President you have the bully pulpit to stop it. Democrats will back down if you turn up serious heat on them.

Moreover, I think public opinion is shifting towards the pro-life position. Dems will want you to nominate a moderate, but almost all will vote against you anyways. Pro-choice Repubs will likely still vote for you if you nominate a Scalia, after all, you campaigned on it. So Mr. President, I urge you to stick with your campaign statements and nominate justices who believe in judicial restraint, like Scalia and Thomas.

Happy Memorial Day and may God bless you and your family.
21 posted on 05/29/2003 7:38:49 PM PDT by votelife (FREE MIGUEL ESTRADA!)
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