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The official armchair QB's filibuster thread.

 
 
ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 06:10 am
JustWonders,

This post is outside of the purpose of the thread (although I am sure it would be very happy in another thread). Here we are analyzing the game.... not taking part in it.

Your post seems to be an interesting twist on the "we are just doing what your party did before" theme that the Dems have been using.

Do you think Is this an effective point for the Dems? Do you think it will work for the Reps, or does this kind of thing have value to neutralize the point for the Dems.

Remember that in this thread we are talking about pure political calculus. Truth doesn't really matter (it never does), the battle is for public opinion and parlimentary leverage.

A healthy cynicism toward both sides is not only appreciated, but it makes the game much more enjoyable.

Even though Thomas is bored by this approach, I think this will be immeasurably more interesting than the partisan bickering that most threads devolve into...

I think it is OK to tastefully celebrate a homerun by your own team... if you can also appreciate a masterful pitching performance by the opposing side.
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 06:11 am
Thanks Thomas.
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 06:17 am
The talking heads on PBS were interesting...

There seems to be a group of 11 or so moderates who may wield some power by forcing a compromise on their leaderships. If they could reach an agreement among themselves and hold the votes to force it, that would be interesting move. I will be surprised if they can hold it together... but it will be neat to watch.

The experts are predicting the first showdown (and possible exercise of the "constitutional/nuclear" option) will be next Tuesday.
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CoastalRat
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 06:27 am
Yeah, I was just reading something about this group that is working behind the scenes to effect a compromise by bringing some of the stalled nominations to a vote, dropping some others and leaving the option to filibuster intact with the understanding that it would only be used in extreme cases.

If this movement gains steam, we could be looking at an debacle on a par with the infamous baseball all-star game that ended in a tie after both teams ran out of players. But maybe in this case it wouldn't be so bad.

And I agree with our other esteemed commentator here that I think the best bet for republicans is to stick with the "up or down vote" argument. I think the dems would have a tough time scoring publicity points with that argument. After all, that is the American way, to vote and let the chips fall where they may.

Back to you, E.
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Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 06:30 am
ebrown_p wrote:
Even though Thomas is bored by this approach, I think this will be immeasurably more interesting than the partisan bickering that most threads devolve into...

I agree, and I'm not bored by your approach at all! I'm just looking at the moves so far, observe nothing exciting so far, so I'm a bit bored with the game at this point. Such stretches happen in every sport of course, and one can always hope for that magic 100 yard run ...

ebrown_p wrote:
I think it is OK to tastefully celebrate a homerun by your own team... if you can also appreciate a masterful pitching performance by the opposing side.

Understood. [passes the peanuts]
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BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 07:33 am
BBB
bm
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McGentrix
 
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Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 12:23 pm
Has there ever been a senate fillibuster of presedential judicial nominees in the past? If so, which party was fillibustering?
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 12:39 pm
McG, Please go back and read my initial post, then rephrase your question in terms of political strategy.

I assume this would be a line of argument from the Republican side? Do you think it will resonate with the public at large? I think the other line of the Republicans is much more effective.
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McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 12:49 pm
Perhaps someone could answer my question?
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Thomas
 
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Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 12:54 pm
McGentrix wrote:
Perhaps someone could answer my question?

Perhaps we can, but don't want to, because that would be off-topic for this thread. Please refer to ebrown's initial post to see why.
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JustWonders
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 04:50 pm
McGentrix wrote:
Has there ever been a senate fillibuster of presedential judicial nominees in the past? If so, which party was fillibustering?


The filibuster has never been used for presidential judicial nominees in the past.
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dyslexia
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 05:14 pm
yeppers quite true, when the Republicans needed to block a Clinton nominee they simply denied it to come up in committee. no need for filibuster.
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BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 05:55 pm
McGintrix
McGentrix wrote:
Has there ever been a senate fillibuster of presedential judicial nominees in the past? If so, which party was fillibustering?


Supreme Court nominee Abe Fortas, filibusted by Republicans, in 1968.

BBB

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A45149-2005Mar17.html
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ebrown p
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 06:00 pm
Please take this discussion outside

This is a discussion on political strategy, mechanations and spin with its effect on leverage and the all important public perception.

There are plenty of threads for y'all to argue about the facts. Just not here.

Facts have no place in an ArmChair QB's strategy thread.

Please....
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dyslexia
 
  1  
Reply Thu 19 May, 2005 06:08 pm
A reflex contraction of the quadriceps muscle resulting in a sudden involuntary extension of the leg, produced by a sharp tap to the tendon below the patella; patellar reflex. I am sorry.
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Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 02:17 am
The New York Times, in its filibuster article today, reports a nice move by Bill Frist: He is plaing the race and gender card, a move that could be quite effective at dividing opinion among the Democrats' supporters.

Quote:
"The filibuster was systematically used when Senate minority rights meant the denial of the rights of African-Americans," the caucus wrote in a letter to Dr. Frist.

Dr. Frist met Thursday with black clergy members who support his push to end the filibusters.

"Why are they afraid to put a black woman on the court?" asked one of them, Bishop Harry R. Jackson Jr., of a nearby Maryland suburb and an organizer of the event. "Because a black woman, everybody knows, is not going to be ruled by the Democrat or Republican party."

Meanwhile, according to the same article, the Democrats appear to be playing defense today.

Quote:
Democrats had toned down their calls to paralyze the Senate and relented in part Thursday, allowing two Foreign Relations Committee sessions related to national security to take place. But they do not dispute the notion that the Senate will not run smoothly if there is a change on their ability to filibuster.

"The bottom line is, it will not be business as usual," said Senator Charles E. Schumer, Democrat of New York. "And we didn't bring this on the Senate. They did."

I'm sure it's not their last word on the matter though. They must have something to put pressure on the Republicans with. I wonder what it is?

On a more strategic note, bearing on Dys' and JustWonders' exchange about the constitutional/nuclear option, it seems to me that the Democrats are pretty successful in making "nuclear" the default nomenclature in the reporting of the press agencies, and of German newspapers. I'd say this gives them a few yards (maybe ten) in their marketing campaign to portray Republicans as extremist. Of course, that could be selection bias on my part, since I tend to get my news from papers that lean liberal and libertarian. Any observations on this from armchair quarterbacks who root for the other team? Which word do your newspapers use in their reporting? (Emphasis on reporting, not commentary)
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fishin
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 04:36 am
Thomas wrote:
Quote:
Democrats had toned down their calls to paralyze the Senate and relented in part Thursday, allowing two Foreign Relations Committee sessions related to national security to take place. But they do not dispute the notion that the Senate will not run smoothly if there is a change on their ability to filibuster.

"The bottom line is, it will not be business as usual," said Senator Charles E. Schumer, Democrat of New York. "And we didn't bring this on the Senate. They did."

I'm sure it's not their last word on the matter though. They must have something to put pressure on the Republicans with. I wonder what it is?


I don't know how famaliar you are with Schumer but I wouldn't expect whole lot of others to follow if he's leading. I wouldn't go so far as to say that's he's insane but he's probably one of the most idealogically driven Democrats in the Senate if not the most. In 2001 when Bush decided he wasn't going to use the American Bar Assoc. recommendations as a consideration in appointing judges Schumer claimed that the process would be "driven by idealoogy instead of qualifications". Right now Priscilla Owens is one of the nominees under consideration and the ABA gave her a "Highly Qualified" rating yet Schumer has been adamantly against her. So much for him worrying about qualifications. But he often finds himself standing alone so it isn't unusual.

The Dems can still easily use the weight of public opinion. Schumer's comments may hurt them there more than help. IMO, as long as the majority of Democrats appear to be willing to seek a middle-of-the-road compromise they hold the upper hand. Right now an unwillingness to compromise by either side will mean a net loss in public support.
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Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 04:52 am
fishin' wrote:
I don't know how famaliar you are with Schumer but I wouldn't expect whole lot of others to follow if he's leading. I wouldn't go so far as to say that's he's insane but he's probably one of the most idealogically driven Democrats in the Senate if not the most.

I didn't know much about Schumer, thanks for the primer. Judging by what little of him I saw on CNN.com so far, I'm surprised that he should be an ideologue. I wouldn't be surprised though, if he was a deal maker who fakes being an ideologue to get a better deal. Anyway, keeping in mind that ebrown wanted this to be a thread about strategy: what, in your strategic judgment, would be a good next move for the Democrats?

fishin wrote:
IMO, as long as the majority of Democrats appear to be willing to seek a middle-of-the-road compromise they hold the upper hand. Right now an unwillingness to compromise by either side will mean a net loss in public support.

I agree, but whichever side shows a willingness to compromise first worsens the terms of the deal for itself. After some pondering what game is being played here, I have come to the conclusion that at the core it's neither football nor wrestling: It's "chicken". Knowing the players better than I do, who do you think will budge first?
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squinney
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 06:01 am
Both sides tried to play the Race Card yesterday with GOP saying something about Dems behaving like Nazi's and the Black Caucus crying about no one listening to them, and making a point about Dem's blocking a black judge, and then something about the filibuster being used back in the days of civil rights fights...

That's a poor card to play, IMO. It likely plays in the South, but the rest of the country? I don't think so. I don't think the rest of the country pays that much attention to color.

Also,
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Thomas
 
  1  
Reply Fri 20 May, 2005 06:26 am
squinney wrote:
That's a poor card to play, IMO. It likely plays in the South, but the rest of the country? I don't think so. I don't think the rest of the country pays that much attention to color.

On the other hand, playing in the South might be key, judging by the relative success of presidential candidates from the North vs. the South in the last couple of elections. I have no idea what makes the South special as a vote-winner, but for some reason it seems to be special. So even assuming that the race card doesn't play in the North -- an assumption I don't buy anymore, considering the surprisingly high amount of self-selected housing segregation there -- it may not be a bad card to play in terms of tactics.
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