Saturday, May 07, 2005

John Dean on Republican Use of Filibuster

Previously John Dean warned us that the dishonesty and secrecy of the Bush administration is Worse than Watergate. Now he corrects the Republican spin on the nuclear option:

The debate over whether to use the "nuclear option" when it comes to Senate filibuster rules continues. Senate Republicans, consistent with their conservative beliefs, claim they are only employing the "nuclear option" to preserve a Senate tradition - not to change one. It is not their own "nuclear option," but rather the Democrats' use of the filibuster to block judicial nominations that, they claim, is truly "unprecedented."

Leading this charge is Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah - who has repeatedly made this very claim on the Senate floor. But he is dead wrong.

I should know: I was there when the history he is trying to rewrite was made. And not only does this very use of the filibuster have precedent, but that precedent was made by Republicans.

Later in Dean's article:

Allow me to set the record straight.

The key event occurred in 1968. That year, Republicans blocked the nomination of Associate Justice Abe Fortas to become Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. And they did so with a filibuster.

Senator Hatch was not in Washington in 1968; he was not elected to the Senate until 1976. And he has either been grossly misinformed as to what occurred then, or is intentionally lying about it.


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