Monday, December 12, 2005

Frist's Nuclear Option

The ever-astute Joe Gandelman presents some thoughts on how Bill Frist could bungle the Alito nomination - and unwittingly cause damage to the GOP's positional advantages - by banging the "nuclear option" drum unnecessarily.

Indeed, this whole thing is pretty silly. Perhaps Mr. Frist has already seen the new version of King Kong, and thought beating on his chest will scare his enemies away. But there are few signs so far that the Democrats intend to FILBUSTER Alito: vote against him, perhaps...but there doesn't seem to be any groundswell to use the filibuster.

* * *

Left to their devices, the Democrats --divided, showing increasing signs of impending intraparty warfare and buffeted by demands from some to decrease the size of the Democratic tent (after all, in 2006 and 2008 it CAN'T hold Joe Lieberman and Hillary Clinton) — can damage themselves. But hit them with a nuclear option — or threaten them with elimating the filibuster when that issue has not seriously arisen yet — would be the GOP's WORST political strategy in terms of helping solidify Democratic unity and further alientate independent voters.

Check it out.

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