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NY Times partisan hackery department: filibuster division

New York Times, January 28, 2012, "Filibustering Nominees Must End": editorial calls for end of filibustering of judicial nominations.

New York Times, March 13, 2003, "Hold Firm on Estrada": editorial calls for Senate Democrats to refuse to hold a vote on nomination of Miguel Estrada. "The criticism [of the filibuster] rings hollow, given that some Republicans making it... voted to filibuster when President Clinton nominated Richard Paez" to the Ninth Circuit.

Might I suggest that the New York Times's criticism of the filibuster "rings hollow" today?

Of course, Paez got an up-or-down vote, got seated, and then proceeded to demonstrate why Republicans voted against him with a series of decisions abusing his judicial authority. The Bush-nominated judges who got seated by virtue of the Gang of 14 compromise after the original filibuster have served admirably without controversy, as surely as the several other judges who remained filibustered because of the compromise, such as Miguel Estrada, would have. (Disclosure: I have a case pending before one of those judges, Janice Rogers Brown. I also have two cases pending before the Ninth Circuit without panel assignments, and I'm adverse against Estrada's firm in one of those cases.)

There is a principled argument to be made against the judicial filibuster of nominations. After eight years of supporting such filibusters, the Times doesn't have the moral authority to make it until it admits its earlier mistake or until after eight years of Democratic administrations, whichever comes first. Barack Obama should nominate Miguel Estrada (just as George W. Bush nominated a filibustered Clinton Fourth Circuit nominee, Roger Gregory) before complaining about D.C. Circuit filibusters.

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Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy

Manhattan Institute


Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.