Bittersweet Deal on Filibusters Reached

Monday, May 23, 2005

Both sides of the aisle held their breath as Senate centrists formed a compromise the day before Tuesday's "showdown" vote on Priscilla Owen.

To make a long story short: the filibuster lives.

However, Democrats have agreed to allow final confirmation votes for Priscilla Owen, Janice Rogers Brown and William Pryor to appeals court seats.

Here's what bothers me: the agreement said future judicial nominees should "only be filibustered under extraordinary circumstances," with each Democratic senator holding the discretion to decide when those conditions had been met.

Of course Democrats will apply that label to any judge they consider "extreme," which includes those who believe in a higher power and the defense for unborn children.

Majority Leader Bill Frist, who wasn't in on the 14 senator deal, gave a mixed reaction. "It has some good news and it has some disappointing news and it will require careful monitoring," he said.

The Democrats definitely got the better end of the deal because they can save their "extreme, ultra, right-wing" rhetoric for the eminent Supreme Court vacancies. Did the Republicans think about that?

Image source: Martin America.