Skip to comments.FREEPERS UNITE - Contact Senate GOP Leaders About Senator Specter
Posted on 11/04/2004 9:57:49 AM PST by Syco
Dear Senator Frist,
After a long and contentious fight to retain the White House and expand our majority in both houses of Congress, I am extremely dismayed by comments made by Senator Specter regarding the President's right to choose his own candidates for the nation's judiciary. After several years of stonewalling on the part of Democrats in the Senate Judiciary Committee, it is incredibly distressing to see a member of the Republican party attempting to block excellent and qualified judges from the bench because of their conservative ideology.
I am a partisan. I will continue to work for our party's success because I believe that we embody the principles that are best for the nation. But make no mistake, conservative members of the Republican party will not continue to support the GOP if a very small minority of our Senators refuse to give a fair hearing to judges who agree with the party platform.
The last election should be a wakeup call to party leadership. The single most important issue to voters was "moral values". The party did a masterful job of getting Evangelical and other Conservative voters to the polls - voters who stayed home in 2000 - largely because of the moral issues facing the nation. It would be disastrous for the party and country if these voters felt betrayed and did not return to the polls in 2006 and 2008.
Renegade judges have been legislating from the bench for decades and have recently accelerated a dangerous experiment in social engineering - whether by redefining marriage, tinkering with the Pledge of Allegiance, or ruling against late term abortion restrictions. The American people recognize this judicial tyranny for what it is, and we look to you and other members of the Senate to put a stop to it.
Senator Specter and Democrats in the Senate say that the President should not nominate candidates with a conservative ideology because they are "outside the mainstream". If that is the case, most of the country must be outside of the mainstream. The vast majority of Americans support some limits on abortion, and clearly Tuesday's results in the states voting on Marriage Amendment should prove that this country will not accept gay marriage as a government supported institution.
In light of all of this, I am writing to you to urge you to take action to remove Senator Specter from the Judiciary Committee. The idea that this man, who won a tough primary fight only with the help of the White House, could be the next Chair of the Judiciary Committee is truly frightening. Please take steps to ensure that he does not aid liberals in continuing to block the President's agenda.
I understand that this move could lead to Mr. Specter defecting to the other side. In reality Senator, he made that defection long ago. Please do what is right and help President Bush and the majority of the American people in seating solid judges, without forcing them to pass a liberal litmus test. As our majority leader, we are counting on you.
Hey, President Bush is in charge here. He's against abortion, right? Relay your wishes to him via
Bush doesn't have any real say on the makeup of Senate Committees. It's exactly what the founders intended with the separation of powers. E-mail, fax, or phone Frist and the other members of the Judiciary Committee, as well as the Senate GOP leadership.
I gratefully stand corrected.
"Contrary to press accounts, I did not warn the President about anything and was very respectful of his Constitutional authority on the appointment of federal judges."
This was the first line of specter's 'clarification' and it only became more Clintonesque as it went on. Specter, the author of the 'single bullet theory' and the student of Scottish law, had a brain operation several years ago .... it may have been eight years ago. The MSM said the operation was successful. I say it wasn't!
Only because he was up for reelection the following year. When he safely won, he made disparaging comments about Thomas.
Did you send a similar letter to Senator Santorum as well?
No disrespect but we ALREADY won.
But it's a hollow victory if we don't have the courage of our convictions. Electing a president that will nominate pro-life judges and then watching him bow to a self-appointed "gaurdian" (who CLAIMS to be one of us) and not get those judges through is a "win"....how? Exactly?
The MSM CAN'T defeat ANYONE for two more years and a quick - even if bloody - amputation of this cancerous limb will have ZERO effect on our prospects 2 years from now.
I agree the fillibuster ruse needs to be killed, but there's no need to fillibuster a judge that doesn't get out of Specter's committee. either he "comes to Jesus" on the issue or he has to go off to exile on some non-social committee.
But then 40 senators will kill it.
Read what Specter said, his reason that the president shouldn't send anti-R v W judges is the Dems' filibuster.
If I had any respect for Specter I'd think this was part of a clever plan to get pro-life people riled up over the filibuster! (Judging from peoples responses- too clever LOL!)
IMO that's the one major political blunder for the Rove team this year (well, actually one of two)...thye picked the wrong horse when the backed Specter and underestimated his duplicity.
If Santorum could win in PA, toomey could have too with Rick's backing.
Backing specter would have been okay if they'd got a commitment he would keep on backing bush's judges, but they ought to have know he was a double-crosser.
Specter, as presumptive chairman of the powerful Senate Judiciary Committee, suggested that he would block any Bush nominee to the Supreme Court who opposed abortion rights. Reiterating his position that a woman's right to choose is "inviolate," he said overturning Roe v. Wade today would be akin to trying to reverse Brown v. Board of Education, the court's 1954 landmark desegregation decision.
Barring unforeseen GOP objections, Specter, 74, should assume the committee chairmanship in January. He also sent an unsubtle message to the White House that he expects nominees for the federal bench to be of the highest caliber, and took a critical swipe at the stature of the current court. [emphasis added]
Specter has no business TELLING the President anything, and especially in public.
I agree that Specter must be neutralized and be knocked down a few pegs to where he is unable to interfere.
A few hundred thousand votes switch sides and we lose again.
It's political naivete to think that everyone who voted for Bush, or those that voted for a Senator, or Representative all agree with you on every issue. It's up to the sponsors of an issue to build a majority coalition on each issue and get their issue successfully voted on. It's not easy to do, and to think it is - that's pure folly. The quickest way to lose your majority is to take it for granted. The second quickest way to lose your majority is to get it wrapped around the axle of some issue you ultimately lose. We must nurture and expand our majority while at the same time advancing our issues.
Winning the election isn't everything, it's just the beginning.
Yes, and he also seems to be agreeing with the Dems by saying that the filibustered judged are outside a "range of acceptability." We don't need a chairman who lets the Dems dictate the "range of acceptability." Read the transcript; this is a fair interpretation of what he's saying when he talks about a "range" of "acceptability."
Unless the filibuster rule is changed, and only unless the filibuster rule is changed, Bush will have to select judges from an acceptable range.
It's got nothing to do with Specter. He just spoke the truth.
National Right to Life
URGENT CONGRESSIONAL ALERT
This is an urgent congressional alert from National Right to Life in Washington, D.C., issued Friday, November 5, 2004, at 3 p.m. ET. For updates, go to our website at http://www.nrlc.org. Please forward this e-mail to any appropriate lists!
Help Prevent Arlen Specter
From Becoming Chairman
of the Senate Judiciary Committee!
It is likely that President Bush will have the opportunity to nominate two or more justices of the U.S. Supreme Court during the next four years. Pro-abortion advocacy groups are vowing to do everything in their power to block the President's nominees in the Senate. There has not been a vacancy on the Court for over 10 years, but in recent weeks the press has reported that Chief Justice William Rehnquist is seriously ill.
When President Bush nominates a man or woman to the Supreme Court, that nomination goes first to the Senate Judiciary Committee, which conducts hearings and votes on the nomination. The chairman of the Judiciary Committee will be crucial in shepherding the President's nominees to successful confirmation votes in the committee and in the full Senate.
But what if the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee was himself undercutting President Bush's nominee -- or even actively opposing confirmation of the nominee?
Soon, the Republican members of the Judiciary Committee must decide on who they want as their chairman. Ordinarily, this job would go to the most-senior Republican committee member who does not chair some other major committee. However, in this case, that senior committee member is Senator Arlen Specter (R-Pa.).
Specter would be a disaster as chairman of the Judiciary Committee. Senator Specter has a strongly pro-abortion record, and he is one of the leading champions of human cloning. In 1987, as a member of the Judiciary Committee, Specter played a key role in defeating President Reagan's nominee to the Supreme Court, Judge Robert Bork, who was on record in opposition to Roe v. Wade. In 1995, Specter briefly sought the Republican presidential nomination on a pro-abortion platform. In January 2001, Specter complained on a TV program that some nominees for the Supreme Court were reluctant to take clear positions on Roe v. Wade, and he said that he might have to start withholding his support in such cases.
On November 3, 2004, the day after the election, Specter told reporters that he considers Roe v. Wade "inviolate," and indicated that he believes that nominees who do not express support for that ruling cannot be confirmed. Asked if he would support President Bush's judicial nominees, Specter replied, "That obviously depends upon the president's judicial nominees."
On November 4, those remarks were widely reported in the news media as a "warning" to the White House. The same day, Specter issued a statement saying that he had been warning of possible filibusters by Democrats -- but he did not pledge to support President Bush's nominations to the Supreme Court.
Senator Specter assumes he has a lock on the job -- but actually, he does not have an entitlement to the Judiciary Committee chairmanship.
If another Republican member of the committee decides to challenge Specter and gains the support of a majority of Republican members of the committee, then the decision would go before the entire Republican conference, which is the caucus of all of the Republican senators who will serve in the new Congress that convenes in January. In that case, the 55 Republican senators would decide who will be chairman by a secret ballot.
Thus, ultimately, every Republican senator can have a voice on who holds the powerful gavel at the Judiciary Committee.
Please take these three actions immediately, and urge others to do the same:
1. If one or both of the U.S. senators who will represent your state in the new Congress is a Republican, contact his or her office immediately with this message: "Senator Specter must not become chairman of the Judiciary Committee. We urge Senator ______ to support any other Republican member of the Judiciary Committee to become chairman -- anyone but Arlen Specter." The offices of continuing senators can be contacted by telephone through the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121, and appropriate e-mail messages can be sent to them via the National Right to Life Legislative Action Center at http://www.capwiz.com/nrlc/home/
Please use both phone AND e-mail.
[NOTE: We will post contact information for the seven newly elected Republican senators on our website's Legislative Action Center as soon as it becomes available. For some of these, local campaign offices may still be open and taking messages. The seven newly elected Republican senators are Mel Martinez (Fl.), Johnny Isakson (Ga.), David Vitter (La.), Richard Burr (NC), Tom Coburn (Ok.), Jim DeMint (SC), and John Thune (SD).]
2. Call the office of Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tn.) at 202-224-3344, with a message along these lines: "Senator Arlen Specter MUST NOT become chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. He would use that position to protect Roe v. Wade and to advance abortion and human cloning. We urge you to do everything in your power to ensure that a pro-life Republican becomes chairman, not Specter." You can also send Sen. Frist a fax at 202-228-1264, and send him an e-mail using the webform at the National Right to Life Legislative Action Center at http://www.capwiz.com/nrlc/mail/?id=540&type=CO&state=TN
[NOTE: The majority leader does NOT have the power to simply appoint a chairman for the Judiciary Committee. But Senator Frist can be influential in guiding the Republican senators collectively to solve this urgent problem.]
3. If you receive a response from the office of any Republican senator, or see a statement on the matter by your senator in the news media, please forward it to the Federal Legislation Department at National Right to Life at Legfederal@aol.com, or by fax to 202-347-3668, or by phone to 202-626-8820.
SPECIAL ACTION ITEM:
If your Republican senator is already a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, he can be especially influential in deciding who the new chairman will be. Please make every effort to encourage other constituents to contact the Republican committee members who are listed below. (NOTE: One or more NEW Republican senators may be appointed to the committee later this month, but it is not yet known who they will be.)
Orrin Hatch (Utah)
Charles Grassley (Iowa)
Jon Kyl (Az.)
Mike DeWine (Ohio)
Jeff Sessions (Al.)
Lindsey Graham (SC)
Larry Craig (Id.)
Saxby Chambliss (Ga.)
John Cornyn (Tx.)
Below are their phone numbers:
Hatch (202) 224-5251
Kyl (202) 224-4521
DeWine (202) 224-2315
Sessions (202) 224-4124
Graham (202) 224-5972
Chambliss (202) 224-3521
Get your senator's phone number/e-mail from the directory at www.senate.gov.
Again, no need to bombard Majority Leader Senator Frist. Every Republican Senator votes on the leadership. Every Republican needs to hear that Americans do not want Arlen Specter determining who can and who cannot sit on the Supreme Court.
And remember, this is time-sensitive. I've been told Republicans could caucus on this as early as next week. And then, friends, we're stuck.
For More Information: http://www.notspecter.com/
And Join Evangelical and Catholic Pro-Life Leaders
The Rev. Rob Schenck, Rev. Pat Mahoney, and Chris Slattery
and cry out with us:
"No Judiciary Committee Chair To Sen. Arlen Specter"
and join our
"Bork>Specter - Pro-Life Pray-In"
Tuesday, November 16th
Assemble at either:
109 Second St. NE
(near U.S. Supreme Court)
(then we will process to pray)
at 1PM at 1st St. and Constitution Ave.
[Some will stay outside Senate Office Building
and some will go inside the office of]
Senator Bill First
461 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Contact Senator Bill First by email @ Bill Frist, M.D.
Phone 202-224-3344 or fax to 202-228-1264
Contacting the White House [En Español]
E-Mail President George W. Bush: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tell President Bush and Senator Frist that
we Need a Loyal Pro-Life Chairman
Say NO to A. Specter for Judiciary Committee Chairmanship
Contact Chris Slattery at (914) 224-5773 or
Rev.Pat Mahoney at (540) 538-4741
Conservative wing raises fuss over Specter's views
Carl Hulse, New York Times
November 6, 2004
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Angry conservatives flooded Senate phone and fax lines Friday demanding that Republicans prevent Sen. Arlen Specter, R-Pa., from presiding over the Judiciary Committee for saying two days earlier that judicial nominees who strongly oppose abortion might be rejected.
Republican senators and their aides, speaking privately for the most part, said the uproar posed an impediment for Specter, who is in line to succeed chairman Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, atop the committee that examines judicial nominees. It was likely that he would still get the post, they said, but not certain. "He is not out of the woods," said one aide.
Offices of Senator Frist:
Office of Senator Bill Frist, M.D.
461 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
28 White Bridge Road
Nashville, TN 37205
735 Broad Street, Suite 701
Chattanooga, TN 37402
200 East Main Street
Jackson, TN 38301
10368 Wallace Alley Street
Kingsport, TN 37663
Twelve Oaks Executive Park
Building One, Suite 170
Knoxville, TN 37919
5100 Poplar Avenue
Memphis, TN 38137
United States Senate Committee on the Judiciary
Find & Write your Senators Here
Senator Frist Web Form
Didn't Spector mouth off right away? He didn't have to
"warn" the President like that right away. What exactly
did he say? Annie Coulter had a good commentary on him.
"Donkey in Elephant Suit" or something like that.
With all due respect, "political capital" is just a metaphor, useful at times, but not all the time. There really is not a set supply of good luck or good news that the senators have to horde for later use. Nothing keeps a senator from voting for a good chairman now, and good filibuster rules later.
A better metaphor might be momentum. A first step towards judicial restraint now clarifies in peoples' minds that such a thing is possible and makes it easier to take a second step in the same direction later. Elevating Specter to the chairmanship is a vote for the status quo, and does nothing to make it easier for people to support cloture reform later.
Or you could look at this as a "teaching moment". Bush saved Specter's hide in the primary, and Specter rewarded him with a slap to the face. Now people are waiting to see whether there are any consequences, and that will guide their future actions. A little firmness now might save the Republican leadership grief later.
If you do insist on the "political capital" model, consider that putting Specter into the chairmanship increases the future political cost of getting judges who take the constitution seriously. Specter said he opposed Bork because of Bork's "insistence on 'original intent'". What are the chances that he will help the president with his nominees, when he has such an attitude?
"In January 2001, Specter complained on a TV program that some nominees for the Supreme Court were reluctant to take clear positions on Roe v. Wade, and he said that he might have to start withholding his support in such cases."
I'm just about sure this was in a booknotes interview on CSPAN with Brian Lamb. Can anyone confirm that, and provide an exact quote, or better yet, a transcript?
Just found the answer to my own question. The interview was on booknotes.
Will post excerpt on another thread.