Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Things heated up some in the Alito hearings

The comic is Isaiah's most recent The World Today Just Nuts and it's called "The Confirmation Process."

The roundtable last night was depressing. C.I. wrote about it a little so you can read about some of it here. But the press was already calling it over after yesterday because so many of the Dems were so damn spineless and kept saying things like, "You're such a good person," "I like you" blah blah blah blah.

But after a slow start, they came to life. Maybe there's still hope?

I hope so. I thought Russ Feingold, Dick Durbin, Ted Kennedy and Charles Schumer did a great job. It looked like Alito was finally getting some tough questioning. I hope they keep it up.

C.I. noted something and Mom asked me if I could put it in when I did my next entry. It's here because it's good but if it had been not so good, it would be here just because Mom asked. (But it's good. Read it, you'll see.) This is about Tuesday's hearing, Eleanor Smeal's "Alito Hearings Day Two:"

The Computer Glitch that Wasn't
Senator Russ Feingold's (D-WI) questioning of Judge Alito on his failure to recuse himself from cases involving Vanguard, despite his promises to the Senate, was another particularly exciting exchange in the hearing.
Before the hearings, Alito had explained his failure to recuse himself in Vanguard cases as a "computer glitch," blaming it on a problem in the computerized screening process used to prevent judges from being assigned to cases in which they may have an interest.
But documents just obtained by the Judiciary Committee make clear that Alito failed to place Vanguard on the recusal list he submitted annually to the court during various years. Feingold asked Alito, "But you don't think it was a computer glitch anymore, do you?" Alito acknowledged, "It was not a computer glitch..." and went on to suggest that he was misled by a clerk. But Feingold was unsatisfied, asking Alito, "Why not just admit you made a mistake, agree to recuse and move on? Why didn't you just do that when the issue was raised here, instead of coming up with these different explanations that, in some cases, I think, have become unconvincing?"
This is an issue that does not seem to be going away for Alito. Indeed, it shouldn't, since his credibility is at stake.
Perhaps the most remarkable statement of the day, and the one that is most telling about what is on the minds of many on Capitol Hill, was Senator Lindsay Graham's (R-SC) off-the-cuff statement made immediately following Alito's Vanguard exchange with Feingold.
Graham stated, "That was an interesting exchange ... I hope you'll understand if any of us come before a court and we can't remember Abramoff, you will tend to believe us!"

And remember to listen to the hearings on Pacifica.