Tuesday, January 31, 2006
Samuel Alito Confirmed to Supreme Court
By a 58-42 vote, Sam Alito has been confirmed as an Associate Justice to the United States Supreme Court.
That felt sooooooooo good to write.
Alito was on my personal short list from the beginning (as seen through this post from the middle of last May).
This leaves President Bush with two fantastic judicial appointments to SCOTUS. If Stephens or Ginsburg submit their resignation over the next two years, Bush will have a lasting legacy in the form of SCOTUS for several decades after his term as President concludes.
More to come on the voting breakdown later...
UPDATE: OK, after a break for lunch with the VOLConWife (who really needed to get out of the office), I have looked at the voting breakdown. Democrats voting for Alito's confirmation were:
Conrad (ND - a red state)
Byrd (WV - a red state in 2004)
Nelson (NE - a red state)
Johnson (SD - a red state)
"Independent" Jim Jeffords (VT) voted against Alito, as did one Republican - Lincoln Chafee (RI). Chafee released this statement on the Alito confirmation, which only goes to prove that Senator Chafee (or the staff member who wrote the statement for him) is 1) an expert on hypocrisy while being 2) uneducated on the Constitution that he swore to support and defend.
Can we end the charade of counting Chafee as a Republican? I realize the importance of having the majority, having served on Capitol Hill during a time when we didn't have it. Surviving on the crumbs given to you by the Democrats, smaller facilities that often make it difficult to do your work, and the loss of power in the committee chairs - these make owning the majority of vital importance. However, our majority is now such that we need to rid ourselves of Mr. Chafee. I'm not talking about kicking him out of the party. I'm talking about kicking his butt in a primary. Isn't there anyone more conservative than Chafee with $60 million or $70 million just lying around that wouldn't mind being in a powerful position like the United States Senate?
MORE: 2006 Senate candidate Ed Bryant distributed the following press release this afternoon:
Bryant Statement on Alito Confirmation
BRENTWOOD, TN - Republican U.S. Senate Candidate Ed Bryant, a former federal prosecutor, professor of constitutional law at West Point, and four-term Congressman today released the following statement on the confirmation of Judge Samuel A. Alito, Jr. as Associate Justice of the Supreme Court:
“I congratulate Judge Alito on his confirmation. His record as a judge and as a federal prosecutor show that he has honored the constitution and will continue to do so. Since Judge Alito was rated well-qualified by the ABA, it is a shame that only four Democrats voted for his confirmation.
“But the real question remains: how would a Senator Harold Ford Jr. have voted on Alito? Tennesseans deserved to know an answer before the vote, and Harold Ford Jr. failed on that account. With both his liberal base of supporters and ordinary Tennesseans watching closely, Ford has chosen to punt. Tennessee needs real, conservative leadership on judiciary matters, and I am the only candidate who has the qualifications and life experiences to fill that role as our next United States Senator.”
That's a good question, and I am stunned Ford failed to address Bryant's concerns over the past few days. Either Ford is spineless, his campaign is woefully inept at crafting responses, or he wants to govern in the Clintonesque tradition of being one step behind the story so as to always be "with the people." No matter the reason, Ford is providing daily reminders to Tennesseans as to why he shouldn't be representing us after November.