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Yesterday, turnerbroadcasting linked to the following article:
A Democrat on the Senate committee that will consider Harriet Miers' nomination said Sunday that President Bush's Supreme Court choice lacks the votes now to be confirmed, saying there are too many questions about her qualifications.
"If you held the vote today, she would not get a majority either in the Judiciary Committee or the floor," said Sen. Charles Schumer, D-New York. On the 18-member GOP-controlled committee, "there are one or two who said they'd support her as of now."
But the committee's chairman, Republican Sen. Arlen Specter of Pennsylvania, rejected the notion that Miers' nomination was in trouble. Specter said most senators are waiting for the hearings before making up their minds "There are no votes one way or another," he said.
Notice that Specter didn't really refute what Schumer said. According to both of them, there are not enough votes to confirm Miers. Taegan Goddard has more from an insider on the committee
:"Many are wondering why the Republicans who criticize the nomination of Miers pushed for the hearings to start Nov. 7th. My understanding is that they are trying to get to a committee vote ASAP, so that they can stop the nomination in committee, while they still have the momentum in the media against her, without dragging the coverage out into the new year. Some GOP Judiciary committee members and senior staff have suggested that this nomination is hurting the Republican party, and that they need to get over this quickly. Thus, there is now talk of the President pulling the nomination. If they vote her out in committee, the Republicans in the Senate save face, and the Democrats lose their credibility to vote against the next nomination.
"Kennedy, Biden, Schumer, Feingold, Durbin, are sure to vote NO as things stand, and Feinstein, Leahy, and Specter aren't far behind. I heard from a Graham staffer that Graham and Hatch are also talking about coming over, but it's only somewhat likely that both will turn. Of course there is Kohl who will probably vote NO if necessary, but I have not heard anything from his office. The only thing I have heard about Brownback is that his staff has advised him against going against the Bush base if he doesn't have to."
I have always believed that Democrats could probably stop the Miers nomination if we wanted too
. That certainly seems to be the case now, considering how the Republican elites seem very much to be against her. The unholy alliance remains a real possibility.
However, I still don't know if we want to. Would it just result in a more conservative nominee? Would it create an image problem for the party? On the other hand, would it force the White House into nominating another Kennedy? It also might make the White House even weaker during a time in the Bush administration when they are already weaker than they have ever been.
What do you think? Take the poll in the extended entry.