RUSH: All right, now, before we go to the audiotapes of this cockamamie, stupid meeting at the White House today, here’s this. This is a Rasmussen poll. It’s from yesterday. “If President Bush nominates a qualified conservative to serve on the Supreme Court, 58% of likely voters say that the Senate Democrats should vote to confirm that nominee. A Rasmussen Report survey found that just 24% of registered voters, likely voters, believe that Harry Reid’s party should oppose such a nominee. Republicans and unaffiliated voters strongly support confirmation. Democrats are even evenly divided: 43% say that their senators should vote to confirm while 38% take the opposite view.” You know why it is? Because people in this country understand when you win elections, you get to do this. When you lose elections, you don’t.
You don’t get to name the nominees when you lose elections. You name the nominees, you pick them, when you win elections. There’s probably other polling data, the pre-vacancy, prior to Sandra Day O’Connor’s retirement that indicate pretty much the same thing, but this is a post-vacancy poll, and again: 58% of likely voters said that Senate Democrats… This question was specifically worded, and it was not asked of all Republicans. “Fifty-eight percent say that Senate Democrats should vote to confirm that nominee if the nominee is a qualified conservative. Only 24% thought that Harry Reid’s party should oppose such a nominee.” So this is exactly what I’m saying about the arena of ideas. These people have lost it. They no longer have their area of dominant influence out there, but the court is so important to them and their elitism is such that what you think doesn’t matter to them anyway.
Even McCain. McCain was at a fund-raiser in Arizona last night and said (paraphrasing), “There will be no filibusters. This is an up-or-down vote situation. President gets to nominate who he wants.” I’m paraphrasing here, but Drudge had a little blurb of it on his website today and I didn’t bother to print it out because it was just a little paragraph, but McCain was out there sounding like a fire and brimstone conservative — and he’s one of the gang of 14. Let’s go to the audiotape. Here’s the president this morning after he had breakfast with Leahy, Dingy Harry, Bill Frist and Arlen Specter. A reporterette said, “Mr. President, you had a meeting this morning with four leading senators. How much more input do you need before you’ll be able to make a decision on a Supreme Court nominee?”
THE PRESIDENT: I did have a good breakfast with four United States senators, the leaders of the Senate plus the heads of the judiciary committee. I asked their advice on a couple of matters. One, I asked their advice on the timing of a nominee, in other words, how fast could they get to the hearings necessary for a nominee named to move forward. Secondly, we talked in general about a potential nominee. They’ve got strong opinions, and I wanted to hear them. And they shared some opinions with me, and of course they’re sharing, many senators are sharing their opinions with others on my staff. We’re actively seeking recommendations.
RUSH: Then the president added this–
BUSH: I ran twice for the president of the United States, and I said if I have a chance to name somebody to the Supreme Court, or courts in general, I pick people who will use the bench, will interpret the Constitution while on the bench but not use the bench to legislate. We’ve got a legislative body called the US House of Representatives and the Senate. They do the legislation, and the courts will then interpret the Constitution as to whether or not the laws are constitutional or not, and so that’s where we are in the process.
RUSH: Okay. So Frist and Specter go up there. I can understand that. Dingy Harry and Pat Leahy, these are people that are actively attempting to undermine the man’s very presidency. He brings them up. You know the old adage? ‘Keep your friends close, your enemies closer,’ I guess, is operative here. Bring them up there. You can speculate. I don’t know if the president thinks this is going to make the confirmation process any easier, if this is going to change the combative nature of Harry Reid. It’s not, if he thinks that. I can’t believe he does think it. I think that they’ve got these polls out there. I think the president is showing the country he’s being cooperative, and when Dingy Harry and Leahy and Schumer and the rest of these guys do what we know they’re going to do, guess who’s going to look uncooperative? Guess who’s going to look like they have no appreciation for the president making them part of the process? And I hope that’s the gambit here. I hope that’s what’s going on, and I trust that it is. I hope it’s not something else. Let’s listen to Dingy Harry. He was asked after the meeting what was said in the meeting and what he thought of the meeting, and here’s what Dingy Harry.
REID: I was impressed with the fact the president said it would, that there will be more meetings, consultation, the president has thousands of names and I’m sure at least hundreds of names that he would go through. He didn’t give us any names. There were a lot of names discussed in the meeting of which we’re not going to talking about any of those names, I think that’s the agreement that we have, and we’ll stick by that.
RUSH: Dingy Harry then said this, another portion of his remarks.
REID: Let me say this. I think that we’re in a — at a time in the history of this country where we’ve had enough discussion, debate, and contention on judges —
RUSH: Stop the tape. I think he’s seen the polls. I think he has seen the polls. That’s how you translate that. All right, we’re at a time in this history of the country we’ve had enough discussion, debate, and contention on the judges. He said Senator Frist and I —
REID: — want to avoid that as the two leaders of the Senate. I think it says volumes to talk about the relationship of the ranking member and the chairman of this committee. They are friends; they have been for a long time. And for Senator Frist and I, they have set an example of how you need to get along as people who run a committee.
RUSH: This just makes me want to throw up, to listen to this gobbleygook. Here is a guy who’s out there calling the president “a loser” in front of school kids. Here is a guy who is filibustering judges, who’s tarring and feathering and literally trying to destroy the reputations of fine people in the appellate court nominations the president sent up there — Janice Rogers Brown, Charles Pickering, Priscilla Owen, the whole list of them. Harry Reid led the charge in trying to destroy them, even citing — he’s not even allowed to see — raw FBI files about one judge, Henry Saad, out of Michigan, and these guys don’t get to pick the nominee. They are not the winners of the elections, and it galls me that they have the audacity to think that they now have a serious constitutional role in the nomination process. They don’t. There is nothing about it. In the next issue of the Limbaugh Letter we’re going to do a whole feature on what the Founders wrote and said about the confirmation process, and you will see in the next issue of The Limbaugh Letter that it was not the way the Democrats in the Senate are defining it today. It was the way they ran the Senate when Clinton was naming judges. He’d name a liberal judge, 50 days later they’re confirmed 98-zip. It’s just two different sides of the coin here.
Read the Articles…
Headline: Poll: Dems should confirm conservative
Subhead: Majority of likely voters want support for Bush court pick
Source: World Net Daily
Date: July 11, 2005
A majority of likely American voters believe Senate Democrats should confirm any qualified conservative nominated by President Bush for the Supreme Court.
According to a recent Rasmussen Reports survey, just 24 percent believe Democrats should oppose such a nominee, and 58 percent believe the pick should be confirmed.
With Justice Sandra Day O’Connor’s retirement announcement this month and the expectation Chief Justice William Rehnquist will step down, President Bush could make two high court nominations before the term begins in October.
But Senate Democrat leaders have vowed to put up a fight if Bush does not nominate a “mainstream conservative” in the mold of O’Connor.
An earlier Rasmussen poll showed just 17 percent of American voters believe O’Connor is politically conservative.
During the battle over judicial nominations earlier this year, only 22 percent of Americans had a favorable opinion of the filibuster compromise reached by 14 senators.
The latest survey shows Republicans and unaffiliated voters strongly support confirmation. Democrats are evenly divided – 43 percent say their senators should vote to confirm while 38 percent take the opposite view.
The divide among Democrats is strictly along ideological lines, the poll taker said. Fifty-eight percent of liberal Democrats want their party to oppose confirmation of a qualified conservative. Fifty-eight percent of moderate and conservative Democrats take the opposite view.
The survey also found 64 percent of men, and 53 percent of women believe Senate Democrats should vote to confirm a qualified conservative nominee.
That view is shared by 61 percent of white Americans and 50 percent of other Americans.
Another survey this year showed that 42 percent of Americans have a favorable opinion of the U.S. Supreme Court. Nearly as many, 41 percent, have an unfavorable opinion.
The poll data also indicated liberal voters have a higher opinion of the Supreme Court than conservatives.
Headline: Judgment Day
Subheadline: President Bush should listen to his base, not his opponents
Source: National Review
By: Mark R. Levin
Date: July 12, 2005
Last week the president admonished conservatives for daring to suggest that Attorney General Alberto Gonzales would be an unacceptable Supreme Court nominee because of an opinion he wrote in a Texas parental-notification case while serving on the Texas supreme court, and because of his role as White House counsel in watering down the administration’s brief against reverse discrimination in admissions policies at University of Michigan. Keep in mind, conservatives have been respectful in their criticism of Gonzales. There have been no personal attacks or false accusations. And these are the same conservatives who went to bat for Gonzales when the president nominated him for attorney general.
Meanwhile, this morning, President Bush had breakfast with, among others, Senators Harry Reid and Patrick Leahy — both of whom voted against Gonzales’s confirmation and who led efforts to tie him to torture — for the purpose of consulting with them about his nomination to the Court. And, of course, Reid famously called the president a “loser” and a “liar.” And Leahy has conspired with leftwing groups in an effort to derail the president’s appellate-court nominees for the last four years, including through the use of unprecedented and unconstitutional filibusters.
What’s wrong with this picture? President Bush was quick to slap his conservative base, yet he has shown an inexhaustible supply of sensitivity to those who plot to derail his presidency. Early on, the president was solicitous of Senator Ted Kennedy, inviting him to the White House residence to watch a movie and share popcorn. He even named the main Department of Justice building after Robert Kennedy. In return, Kennedy has never missed an opportunity to stick a knife between the president’s ribs.
The president named Bill Clinton, along with his father, to head-up the tsunami-relief effort. Bush 41 has taken the relationship a step further, hosting Clinton at his summer home in Maine, among other things. President Bush even brought Clinton along to attend Pope John Paul II’s funeral. And in return, Clinton has traveled the world undermining the president in public statements. So, too, have Hillary Clinton and numerous former Clinton administration officials.
Despite Bush’s efforts — and there are countless other examples — the animus and vitriol leveled against him by his political opponents are beyond anything I have witnessed in my lifetime. And I served in the Justice Department during the Iran-Contra matter.
And as I write this, the same people with whom the president is breaking bread want to break Karl Rove’s political neck. Is the disparate treatment of friend and foe not bizarre?
President Bush is at an historic crossroads. His supporters — who defended him through the 2000 election court battle, the attacks on his cabinet members, the attempts to undermine the war effort at home, and, yes, the blocking of his appellate-court nominees — deserve better. It’s one thing to be demeaned by the liberal media, the Democratic party, and the Inside the Beltway crowd. But it’s another thing entirely for the president himself to treat his base like the crazy aunt in the attic when legitimate concerns are raised about something so important as the next Supreme Court nominee.
It is critical that the White House understand how passionate conservatives are about the Supreme Court’s abuse of power. Since Dwight Eisenhower, Republican presidents have promised to appoint individuals to the Court who would uphold the Constitution. They’ve done a miserable job. Yes, there have been occasions when nominees have changed philosophies after confirmation. But too many times Republican presidents have chosen nominees for reasons that have nothing to do with their judicial philosophy but rather with political calculations to appease liberal demands. Among them are William Brennan, Lewis Powell, John Paul Stevens, and Sandra Day O’Connor.
I understand why Democratic presidents aren’t sensitive to the conservative base, but not President Bush. The Supreme Court is out of control and President Bush has the chance to do something about it. And, indeed, he promised to do something about it — i.e., appoint justices who share the judicial philosophies of Justices Antonin Scalia and Clarence Thomas. So, of course, the president’s base is nervous when he embraces his adversaries and takes swipes at his friends.
And if political calculations are part of the process, as they undoubtedly they are, surely the White House must know that nothing will be more dispiriting and debilitating to the Republican base then yet another fumbled Supreme Court appointment. The consequences to the Republican party and the nation could be devastating. President Bush — please listen to your supporters, not Harry Reid.
— Mark R. Levin is author of the bestselling Men In Black, president of Landmark Legal Foundation, and a radio talk-show host on WABC in New York.