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The Weblog at The View from the Core - Fri. 11/19/04 05:44:23 PM

Specter's Statement on Judiciary Committee

Arlen must have had to agree to this to get the chairmanship.

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I have not and would not use a litmus test to deny confirmation to pro-life nominees. I voted to confirm Chief Justice Rehnquist after he had voted against Roe v. Wade. Similarly, I voted to confirm pro-life nominees, Justice Scalia, Justice O’Connor and Justice Kennedy. I lead the successful fight to confirm Justice Thomas which almost cost me my Senate seat in 1992.

I have assured the President that I would give his nominees quick Committee hearings and early Committee votes so floor action could be promptly scheduled. I have voted for all of President Bush’s judicial nominees in Committee and on the floor, and I have no reason to believe that I’ll be unable to support any individual President Bush finds worthy of nomination. I believe I can help the President get his nominees approved just as I did on confirmation of two controversial Pennsylvania Circuit nominees when other, similarly situated Circuit nominees, were being filibustered.

I have already registered my opposition to the Democrats’ filibusters with 17 floor statements and will use my best efforts to stop any future filibusters. It is my hope and expectation that we can avoid future filibusters and judicial gridlock with a 55-45 Republican majority and election results demonstrating voter dissatisfaction with Democratic filibusters. If a rule change is necessary to avoid filibusters, there are relevant recent precedents to secure rule changes with 51 votes.

I intend to consult with my colleagues on the Committee’s legislative agenda, including tort reform, and will have balanced hearings with all viewpoints represented. I have long objected to the tactic used of bottling up civil rights legislation in the Judiciary Committee when it should have gone to the floor for an up or down vote. Accordingly, I would not support Committee action to bottle up legislation or a constitutional amendment, even one which I personally opposed, reserving my own position for the floor.

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On the other hand, we have this from Scrappleface today.

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Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee today announced their unqualified support of U.S. Sen. Arlen Specter, R/D-PA, after he admitted that his long-standing advocacy of abortion was "just a running gag."

"People don't get satire anymore," said Mr. Specter. "I was just kidding about that pro-choice stuff, and my colleagues on the judiciary committee know it. Does anyone really believe that they would back me for the chairmanship if they thought I advocated the killing of infants in the womb? It's laughable."

Mr. Specter said his Jewish faith makes the "inside joke about abortion even more absurd."

The senator added, "If a standup comedian came out on the stage and said, 'Good evening, I'm a Jewish, pro-choice Republican,' that would be it. He would slay them. Thank you, goodnight."

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Lane Core Jr. CIW P — Fri. 11/19/04 05:44:23 PM
Categorized as Political.


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