Monday, November 07, 2005
# Posted 10:41 PM by Ariel David Adesnik
MR. RUSSERT: Samuel Alito, the president's new nominee -- let me take you back when he was appointed to the Court of Appeals, 3rd Circuit. Here's Ted Kennedy. [Sound of Kennedy's voice, c. 1990 -ed.]:That's pretty funny. Kennedy is an experienced member of the Judiciary Committee, but he's suggesting that Christian conservatives know more about Alito than he does. Now that's what I call oversight. Anyhow:"Well, I just join in the commendation. You have obviously had a very distinguished record, and I certainly commend you for long service in the public interest. I think it is a very commendable career and I am sure you will have a successful one as a judge. ...We are glad to have you here and we will look forward to supporting you and voting for you."
MR. RUSSERT: It's interesting, Senator, though, the way the Senate has changed and I think maybe you have changed in the way you approach Supreme Court nominees. When you first came to the Senate, you said this. "I want to state that it is our responsibility as members of the committee ...in advising and consenting, that we are challenged to ascertain the qualifications and the training and the experience and the judgment of a nominee, and that it is not our responsibility to test out the nominee's particular philosophy; whether we agree or disagree ..."And continue he does, but let's fast forward a bit:
MR. RUSSERT: Let me ask you this: When there was a Democratic president, Bill Clinton, he nominated Ruth Bader Ginsburg. And at that time, "In her confirmation hearings, [Ginsburg] promised not to bring an ideological bias to the court but expressed opinions on several issues that put her at odds with some of her conservative colleagues. She acknowledged support for a woman's right to choose, praised the failed equal rights amendment and criticized discrimination against homosexuals."Ah, yes. Here we go again with the "ideology". The good Senator claims that he is tolerant of all judicial philosophies, but will reject candidates who have an ideology. Apparently, the definition of "ideology" is "a judicial philosophy significantly different from my own."
Now, if you've had enough of Ted Kennedy and stop reading this post right here, you are forgiven. But Russert got in two more great shots that deserve to be posted. On the subject of White House personnel, Tim Russert asked:
MR. RUSSERT: Who should leave? Who should leave?Remember, Kennedy serves on the Judiciary Committee.
Finally, we come to a set up that I found to be completely transparent, but that Kennedy fell for hook, line and sinker:
MR. RUSSERT: You talked about Iraq. There's a big debate now about whether or not the data, the intelligence data, was misleading and manipulated in order to encourage public opinion support for the war. Let me give you a statement that was talked about during the war.In a word: Ouch! (0) opinions -- Add your opinion"We know [Iraq is] developing unmanned vehicles capable of delivering chemical and biological warfare agents...all U.S. intelligence experts agree they are seek nuclear weapons. There's little question that Saddam Hussein wants to develop them. ... In the wake of September 11th, who among us can say with any certainty to anybody that those weapons might not be used against our troops, against allies in the region? Who can say that this master of miscalculation will not develop a weapon of mass destruction even greater--a nuclear weapon. ..."Are those the statements that you're concerned about?
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