Will It Be Alito Or Luttig?

Sunday, October 30, 2005
If I were in charge of political announcements for the administration, I would strongly suggest tomorrow morning as a fine time to announce the next candidate for appointment to the Supreme Court. It would put the Plame Game on the inside pages where it belongs and throw the Demsm into a tizzy trying to determine which story required more attention. A red meat candidate will generate a blizzard of stories.

I don't have any preference among the short list candidates although I believe that Garza would be the most helpful pick from a political point of view. The intricacies of determining the conservative purity of the entire list have become too byzantine for nonpuritans to follow. The part of the show that I am most interested in watching is the reaction of the Seven Dwarves. It will generate a frisson of delight if Dopey does something with which Bill Kristol disagrees. Particularly if he does it in his typically bombastic manner. If McCain declares a red meat conservative nominee to be "outside the mainstream", therefore signaling the Dems that they have a free hand at a filibuster, his presidential aspirations will never be realized and Little Billy will never have the position within an administration that he so desperately seeks. That's an outcome that would truly warm the cockles of my heart.

Alternatively, should Dopey support a red meat candidate, he will find himself no longer the media's maverick heartthrob and the Straight Shooter Express wil remain in the garage (or do they keep it in the blimp hangar next to McCain's ego)? Either outcome is fine with me. The main thing that must be achieved is to hold the Seven Dwarves up to the light as the self-serving undisciplined party disloyalists that I believe them to be. There must be a price paid for playing the weathervane and damaging the party.


vnjagvet said...

I think you have it teed up right, Rick.

The politics are somewhat different than when Miers was nominated because of the organized campaign for a "committed conservative" that nomination precipitated.

But with Miers, Bush appeared to try to mollify those who wanted a "non-controversial" nominee. So now he puts the conservative Republicans in the Senate on the spot if he nominates one of the anointed judges desired by the conservative punditry.

How the mighty Specter will respond is anyone's guess but I think you have McCain pegged.

This should be another graduate seminar in political science.

David Thomson said...

My money is on Samuel Alito. The American public is exhausted after the Harriet Miers controversy. He should be easily confirmed. Alito has the necessary credentials. The Democrats will be unable to mount a serious challenge. Why not Michael Luttig? Life is not fair. He is too well known as a conservative standard bearer. Luttig’s time will come in the next few years. Alito is also perceived as an “ethnic candidate.” Every little bit helps.

chuck said...

Whoever is nominated, if nominated tomorrow they will be known as the Halloween candidate. Better than being the stealth candidate, I suppose, but be prepared for lots of bad jokes.

terrye said...

From what I hear Alito is the most likely.

We have to make sure not to piss off the wrong people.

Bush needs to get his numbers up if he has a hope in hell of getting any of his domestic initiatives through and that means picking someone that will unite the party.

I am one of those old fashioned types who actually believes Bush has the right to pick who he wants...so I am not going to second guess him on this.

But I do think that the Miers pick was made with the desire of avoiding a Senate fight and he got one anyway.

So he might as well fight the right people.

flenser said...

Alito is is.

You can go here to get a good background on him.

This will most likely not be filibustered. If it is, the fb will probably be broken. Graham has already warned that Alito will not be considered "extreme" by the Republican members of the Gang of 14.

JB said...

Hmm. Door #1. Don't filibuster. An angry Kossack behind it.

Door #2. Filibuster. Force Gang of 14 into an uncomfortable situation. Bash nice, humble, ethnic accountant-looking guy.

Interesting dilemma.

ex-democrat said...

i don't suppose there's any chance that Miers/Alito was a double play, is there?

RogerA said...

Ex-Dem: that thought did cross my mind, but I have probably been under the influence of the Karl Rove mind meld.

From everything I have read, Alito seems highly qualified, although I am sure his appeals dissent on Casey will be the Dem's cause celebre. Somehow unless there is something else, I dont see the Dems killing this nomination on a flakey pro-abortion issue like spousal notification. I think the pro-life position on notification is most congruent with the American public--

Oh--and who was that guy that got indicted Friday? I see the evil Karl Rove was able to take that discussion off the table.