Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Dems About To Make The Second Worst Mistake In Senate History?

Before I get to what I believe would be the second worst mistake made by one party in Senate history, here is what I believe was the biggest mistake.  The biggest mistake in Senate history was made by the Democrats in 2013 when they changed the rules of the Senate to eliminate filibusters [i.e., 60 votes needed to invoke cloture and allow a vote] on all presidential appointments, including all judicial appointments below the Supreme Court level.  They were able to change this rule of the Senate by using the "Reid rule"  in which the then Senate majority leader Harry Reid established it only took a majority of 51 votes to change the rules of the Senate instead of the long held traditional super majority 67 votes.  


The "Reid Rule" - the worst mistake in U.S. Senate history
Why was that such a big mistake for the Democrats to do?  Because, while they were temporarily able to get some of President Obama's judicial appointments confirmed, little did they know one year later the Republicans would take control of the Senate and two years later the Republicans would also win back the White House.  That meant that Donald Trump has been able to get all of his presidential appointments [that most of which the Democrats have been complaining about] through confirmation with only Republican votes.  Because of the Harry "Reid rule" which changed the rules of the senate to not needing a cloture vote of 60 to allow a vote on these nominees, the Democrats are futile to stop any of them [or any judicial appointments he will appoint in the future].  If it wasn't for the Reid rule, the Democrats could have filibustered and stopped all of Trump's appointments so far. Republicans say, thank you, Harry Reid. 

Now what would be the second worst mistake in Senate history?  The second worst mistake in history would be if the Democrats filibuster Judge Neil Gorsuch from having a vote on confirmation to the Supreme Court of the United States. 

Why would that be such a mistake?  Because if the Democrats do that there is zero chance that the Republicans won't hesitate to use the precedent of the Reid rule to also change the rule of the Senate of needing 60 votes for cloture on Supreme Court nominees.  There has not been one Republican who said they would not vote for that if the Dems filibuster.  

The Republicans won't hesitate to do that because Judge Gorsuch is such a supremely qualified and fair judge.  He has proved it in his mainstream rulings on the bench and on his outstanding rhetoric in his confirmation hearings.  The Democrats know this and they should realize this judge is the best possible judge they could hope for being appointed by a Republican president.  When asked by Senator Feinstein if he can name one case where he has ruled in favor of the little guy [and she told Judge Gorsuch he could have time and send a written form in later], Judge Gorsuch said I don't need any time and rattled off one after another after another case where he ruled for the little guy, off the top of his head.  He named so many cases Senator Feinsten stopped him and said that's good enough.  When asked by another senator if President Trump had asked him how he would rule on Roe v Wade, Judge Gorsuch replied, if the president had asked me that, "I would have walked out the room." 

Trust me Democrats, you may not be so lucky to get a mainstream judge like Gorsuch the next time.  And that is why it would be such a mistake for the Democrats to filibuster Gorsuch and force the Republicans to change the rules of the Senate to not allow filibusters on Supreme Court nominations.  Because, like the Reid rule on presidential appointments, once the rule has been changed it is the new rule of the senate.  That means if there is another Supreme Court nominee in Trump's term, he can nominate any judge, no matter how extreme, because he knows that it will then only need Republican votes to confirm that nominee.  It means if there is a nominee opening with only a couple months to go in the fourth year of Trump's term, the Democrats will be unable to block it, like the Republicans did with Obama, because they won't be able to filibuster him/her.

You might ask, what's the difference if the Democrats filibuster this first appointment or the second one of president Trump, won't the GOP then change the rules of the Senate?  Not necessarily.  Because if the Democrats don't filibuster this supremely qualified nominee, but do filibuster a second one [who they might say is out of the mainstream] there may be enough Republicans who will go along to not want to change the filibuster rule at that time. They might opine that the tradition of the Senate was upheld by the Democrats on the first Supreme Court nominee and they want to maintain that tradition on Supreme Court judges, at least.  Also, they might opine that it will be much closer to when there is a presidential election [especially if that appointee is in the fourth year], where the Democrats could regain power, and they will want to retain the opportunity to filibuster a far leftist Supreme Court nominee by a Democrat president. 

The wise fetching Mrs. B asked me, 'why are you giving the Democrats ideas'?  She wants me to be quiet and allow them to be stupid.  Or in the words of the brilliant Charles Krauthammer, "go ahead Democrats, make my day."  I told Mrs. B, don't worry, the Democrats won't be able to help themselves.  If they want to be stupid [like many times the GOP has been], my little blog won't stop them.  

No comments: