Jan 24, 2006

WTF is up with Nebraska's Ben Nelson?

In a move that didn't really shock anyone I'm sure, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved Alito's confirmation, and now it's all eyes on the Senate to see if they'll do a swift up-or-down vote.

Aside: Why is it called "up-or-down" and not a "yes-or-no" vote?

Anyway.

I'm not optimistic that Alito will be rejected. From Reuters:
So far, just one of the Senate's 44 Democrats -- Ben Nelson of Nebraska -- has announced he will vote for Alito. All but about a handful of others are expected to oppose his appointment to the lifetime post.

Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid of Nevada said he would oppose the nomination. "It is unfortunate the president made such a divisive nomination."

"At a time when the president is abusing his power at every turn, I cannot vote to confirm a judge who won't be an independent check on the executive branch," Reid said.
Why, Ben Nelson? Why? Look at your constituency. Is the possibility of an overturning of Roe v. Wade really what Nebraskans want? (Emphasis mine.)
This state [Nebraska] is more conservative than most, but polls indicate that Nebraskans view abortion rights much as the rest of the country does: A 2000 survey conducted by the Omaha World-Herald found that 72 percent of residents favor keeping abortion legal at least in limited circumstances.

Yet Nebraska has some of the most restrictive abortion laws in the country. Women must attend state-directed counseling and wait 24 hours before they can undergo the procedure. At least one parent must be notified before a minor can get an abortion.

Whatever happened to stare decisis?

1 comment:

Kvatch said...

Why is it called "up-or-down" and not a "yes-or-no" vote?

If I remember correctly the phrase is supposed to apply to a congressional vote on the substance of a bill (maybe a nomination) rather than a procedural or other vote. So I guess voting to end a filibuster would not qualify as an up or down vote because it's not on the substance--the nomination in this case--of the issue.