Monday, November 05, 2007

The Schumer Epiphany Oxymoron

Whenever the word bipartisan is used an alarm should go off to warn the uninformed or remind the politically astute of impending skulduggery from government whether at the federal, state or local level. While politicians tout bipartisanship as a process that should be endorsed by the public, the truth is the only purpose it serves is that of politicians. Contrary to the proposition that bipartisan efforts embody a noble and altruistic function by public officials, it is merely a contrived ploy involving cooperation from both parties for a mutually beneficial outcome. That outcome in no way usggests any benefit for the public at large.

One commentary on the current issue dealing with the Senate confirmation of President Bush's nominee for AG pointt to Senator Chuck Schumer's performance on this issue.

Schumer's Epiphany
November 5, 2007

Michael Mukasey's prospects for confirmation as Attorney General seem to be resuscitated, thanks to the endorsements of two Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee. We suppose this counts as progress -- of a sort.

On Friday the New York Senator ended his indecision, noting that, while Mr. Mukasey was "not my ideal choice," he was "the best we can hope for" from President Bush. California's Dianne Feinstein also came out in favor; she reportedly made up her mind earlier in the week but waited to announce her intentions to give some cover to Mr. Schumer. That's another indication of the leftward pressure on Democrats.

As the commentary above notes the probable motives of both Senator Chuck Schumer and Senator Dianne Feinstein, the press release below indicates Schumer's evolving position on Mukasey from 2003. If he is unsure of his own choice for AG, why was Mukasey on his short list for SCOTUS?



Schumer's action intended to inject bipartisanship into confirmation process to ensure that next SCOTUS nominee gets backing of all 100 Senators, not just 51

Schumer's list for the Court include several Reagan judicial
appointments and a prominent Republican Senator

Schumer submitted the following names:
• Senator Arlen Specter, Republican from Pennsylvania.
• Judge Ann Williams, Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, nominated by President Reagan to the Northern District of Illinois.
• Judge Edward Prado, Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, nominated by President Bush.
• Judge Michael Mukasey, Southern District of New York, nominated by President Reagan.
• Judge Stanley Marcus, Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals, nominated by President Reagan.

The only real surprise on Schumer's short list above is no candidate from the Ninth Circus but since this was obviously an attempt to gain favor with the public and his political rivals there is no need for it to make sense. These are common characteristics of bipartisanship. In the abstract, a notion such as bipartisanship is a good thing. But like so much in the real world there is little chance those good things will ever be realized by this process.

Stanford Matthews
Blog @

1 comment:

  1. Clearly there is something seriously wrong when a Senator says that the nominee for Attorney General is "The best that we can Hope for." Particularly when the nominee in question is, at best, ignorant about what constitutes torture and who, at worst indifferent to it.

    However, I don't think that an inditement of 2 spineless senators should be an inditement of bipartisanism. Or at least, we should not indite bipartisanism in theory.

    If we're going to survive we have to find a way to work together without sacrificing our basic principles.