January 29, 2006


Sen. Obama criticizes filibuster tactic (HOPE YEN, 1/29/06, Associated Press)

To more effectively oppose Supreme Court nominees in the future, Democrats need to convince the public "their values are at stake" rather than use stalling tactics to try to thwart the president, said a senator who opposes Samuel Alito's confirmation.

Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., predicted on Sunday that an effort to try to block a final vote on Alito would fail on Monday. That would clear the way for Senate approval Tuesday of the federal appeals court judge picked to succeed the retiring Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.

Democrats fear he would shift the court rightward on abortion rights, affirmative action, the death penalty and other issues.

"We need to recognize, because Judge Alito will be confirmed, that, if we're going to oppose a nominee that we've got to persuade the American people that, in fact, their values are at stake," Obama said.

"There is an over-reliance on the part of Democrats for procedural maneuvers," he told ABC's "This Week."

Normally you'd think a first term senator with no resume would be too featherweight to be a presidential contender, but given the sorry state of the Democratic Party we may as well consider him a prospective candidate for '08. Through that lens you see here the danger for Hillary, the front-runner, in being reactionary within the party rather than leading it from as close to outside as she can get. Having the loons foaming at her for betraying them would be helpful. Allowing Mr. Obama to condescend to her isn't.

Posted by Orrin Judd at January 29, 2006 4:38 PM

Obama gets a break in a similar way as Hillary. Thee party's hard-core cheered him wildly at the '04 convention because they thought he was one of them, and that he was an attractive minority candidate. They also believed that like the missus, he was sounding a moderate tone to get elected, but didn't really believe all that stuff. Now the left is all worried that Hillary might either not be triangulating in her votes on Iraq and the WOT or by triangulating, doesn't have the guts to say what needs to be said. She's lost some support, but is still the frontrunner due to her past status as demon woman for the GOP.

Obama can also go where others fear to tread because his race affords a bit of a cushion from the far left, but the tone in which George Stephanopoulos asked the question about his opposition to the filibuster had an almost accusatory sound to it, as if he had betrayed his party (or at the very least, ABC News Sunday talk show hosts) by seeking a rational course of action. His minority status can protect him for a while, but if he turns out to be the black Ben Nelson (let alone Joe Liberman), it can only save him for so long.

Posted by: John at January 29, 2006 5:38 PM

There's little chance Obama is a moderate if the bio clips they played during the Democratic National Convention are a guide. His missus is quite the firebrand as well. They may be touted as the next co-presidents.

Posted by: erp at January 29, 2006 6:34 PM

John, what is his race?

While probably not a contender, why not Obama on the ticket with the wicked witch of the Midwest, currently in drag in the Northeast?

Posted by: Genecis at January 29, 2006 9:34 PM

He is a socialist and a gun-grabber.

Posted by: Sandy P at January 29, 2006 10:26 PM