So many people have been saying that, since Alito's confirmation hearings are over and he survived it without throwing a tantrum or a water glass, it's a done deal. It's not. In order to win his seat on the Supreme Court, he still has to win the votes of a majority of the US Senate. Now, this is all completely obvious. But reading some of the defeatism out there, you'd think that he already has.
At The Nation, Bruce Shapiro explains why it is so important that Democrats do not give up fighting against the Alito confirmation. Essentially, there is no reason that it shouldn't be clear that Alito's positions are those of a judicial extremist.
...This is the first confirmation to transpire in the midst of a full-blown constitutional crisis--with the balance of the Supreme Court itself part of that crisis, along with the NSA domestic spying scandal, the confrontation between President and Congress over torture, and the CIA leak investigation.
That constitutional crisis is why the politics of Alito's confirmation do not end with this week's hearing. The judge himself made that certain. Over the last several days I have described Alito's clear indications in his testimony that on sexual privacy, the power of the executive, even the authority of Congress, he appears at odds even with the conservative mainstream.
Likewise, Steve Gilliard makes an incredible case for continuing the fight. I wholeheartedly recommend reading the entire post, but here's what I consider the operative section.
Bork wasn't beat in the committee, but by ads after the fact. The pressure to defeat him grew externally.
Politicians are like any other person seeking public favor, they respond to their voters.
So the next act in this drama is to make a stink, call your elected officials, your Senators and ask them point blank about Friday's Times editorial, the one which claims Alito will vote to overturn Roe, and then ask them if they are going to do anything to stop him.
Now, personally, this moaning to the media is counterintuative, after all, why piss people off by claiming no fight. Not even DC Dems are that clueless. And of course, everyone expects them to fold. So why announce it so early, when you know the GOP is growing more unpopular by the day.
But regardless of a genuine collapse or gamesmanship, there has to be a sustained public outcry, win or lose. There has to be pressure put on the Dems to do whatever it takes to oppose him, and that starts with you calling your Senator.
With a Democrat like Diane Feinstein openly saying that she does "not see a likelihood of a filibuster," it makes our job that much harder. But it also makes our job that much more important as well. We need to make it clear that confirmation for Alito is not acceptable to moderate Americans. Not only do we need to convince the Democrats, but also shaky Republicans who need to win Democratic votes. So let's get to work. Stopping Alito is something we should now throw our full support behind. And despite what you may have heard, it's not yet out of the question.