June 8, 2007

"Reminds me of those radical feminists who insist that their reasons for censoring pornography are completely different from Pat Robertson's."

"No they're not." Says Mickey Kaus, debunking "Bogus Meme #2" about the collapse of the immigration bill.

42 comments:

Simon said...

He takes on the same WaPo story I tore into here, with much the same conclusion.

hdhouse said...

and as usual you were wrong there. as noted, this was a way for all who wanted to stick this wildly unpopular legislation back in the trash and drop the blame on president lameduck.

poison pilling a vote is an old trick. worked again too.

Roger said...

Ssomehow I don't see how the President is going to get blamed on this one; my suspicion is that this will not endear Brother Reid to Sen Kennedy and will be seen by the public as yet another legislative failure. While the President's approval ratings are in the toilet, the Congress' have already reached the septic tank. My guess is this will further depress them.

Fen said...

/via instapundit

"The ABC News/Washington Post poll found that among all Americans, only 29 percent approve of the way Bush is handling the immigration issue. That’s the lowest Bush has ever been on the issue in the survey.

Note, too, that overall approval ratings of the Democratic majority in Congress are even lower than those of the president."

http://www.examiner.com/a-770050%7EPromise_breakers.html?cid=all-hp-featured_editorial

Doyle said...

From the man who brought you "Immigration is the Iraq of domestic policy." Nobody draws facile analogies like the Mickster.

Also, Fen, you'll notice Congress is less popular among Democrats than Republicans. The dissatisfaction is with their failure to adequately confront the ongoing nightmare that is the Bush administration.

If they impeached they'd get a 10 point bump.

Simon said...

Doyle, if they believed that, they'd do it. I say go for it, personally. Put Cheney in the White House as a caretaker, alienate the middle, hand us a 60/40 election in '08. Be my guest.

Doyle said...

It would be a package deal. Cheney would also be impeached and both would answer questions under oath about the decision to invade Iraq, the illegal NSA programs, etc.

It'd make damn good CSPAN, and it's every bit as likely as a Republican victory in 2008.

hdhouse said...

Earth to Right Wing:

Memo: Comparing Bush Poll Numbers to Congress.

Please be advised that Mr. Bush holds national office. If the election were held today, he would likely loose.

Please be further advised that Congressional Offices are local. National opinion polling on whole MEANS NOTHING. If it did, no incumbant would stand much of a chance. What you will find is that while local citizens have disdain for the congress they, by majority, have a favorable on their own congressperson.

Trotting out strawdogs like that will no longer be tolerated.

hdhouse said...

Better course of action is to impeach Cheney. That effectively take the hands out from GWB's ass. Bush's mouth would move less and they wouldn't be filled with words by Darth himself.

I see that as a double win and I'll bet George would feel better too.

Doyle said...

I actually don't mind, HD. The longer it takes them to realize that full repudiation of Bush is an ironclad prerequisite for any chance at victory in '08, the better for us.

The trick is that it's going to be hard for such a non-lunatic to win their primary. They've got to court people like Ann, after all.

Roger said...

I do wish the house would go for the two-fer! Impeaach Bush and Cheney; that also gets Pelosi out of the HR and makes her President. Wow--nothing but upsides.

Would make great political theater--Republicans can have a pep rally at the white house after the vote; Senator Byrd can orate "Dont tamper with this Jury," Tom Harkin can talk about dung... The only thing different would be CJ Roberts not wearing the Rehnquist designed Chief's robe.

Regretably the House Dem's have neither the cojones nor ovarios to do it. Profiles in Jello...all they can manage are secret earmarks. Thanks for cleaning the swamp dems! It took 12 years for the republicans to go on the dark side; its taken the dems 5 months.

Simon said...

Doyle said...
"It'd make damn good CSPAN."

Ann could simulblog it as the ultimate in reality TV.

"It would be a package deal. Cheney would also be impeached and both would answer questions under oath about the decision to invade Iraq, the illegal NSA programs, etc."

Personally, I suspect your olfactory nerves will be confounded with the stench of bananas when shortly before leaving office, Bush issues a blanket pardon to everyone who served in his administration. But y'know, in the meantime, go ahead. If you really think impeachment is a good idea, go for it. This masturbatory repetition of the idea of impeachment is getting boring - either do it or shut up about it. It's your Congress. For now. Ooh! You know what else would be a good idea? You could force a government shutdown during a budget showdown with the President. I think that worked out well last time, too.


hdhouse said...
"Earth to Right Wing: Memo: ... If the election were held today, [Bush] would likely loose."

Sooner or later the left is going to realize that Bush will not be on the ballot in the next election (or any subsequently), and none of the people they'll be running against have been part of the administration policies they criticize. They're going to realize this or they're going to wake up in a daze the morning after the next election and wonder why trying to persuade the public not to vote for George W. Bush didn't win them the White House.

Simon said...

Roger said...
"I do wish the house would go for the two-fer! Impeaach Bush and Cheney; that also gets Pelosi out of the HR and makes her President. Wow--nothing but upsides."

The Speaker being third in line is a problem that has produced one of the few agreements between me and Sandy Levinson. Whaddayaknow, a broken watch is right twice a day. ;)


"The only thing different would be CJ Roberts not wearing the Rehnquist designed Chief's robe."

I still think he ought to have done. The story on why the stripes are there would foreclose it, but I always thought it was a nice coincidence that you had four stripes on each arm for the four justices who sit on either side of the chief, and thus that the robe would make a neat chief justice's robe.

Doyle said...

Simon -

You seem to have mistaken what I wrote for "Would you support impeachment, Simon?"

And I don't control Congress any more than you do, unfortunately. So I don't have to shut up about it, although it was kind of ancillary to my point about the Dems.

But whatever, you're clearly in a place from which it appears that Democrats do not have a massive advantage for the presidency by virtue of the current Republican president being such a historic disaster.

He doesn't have to run again, but all his would-be successors seem to think that the Iraq War was the right thing to do (Giuliani), was only "mismanaged" (McCain) or "it's a null set" (Romney).

That's not gonna fly. Sorry.

John said...

I love these "The Democrats are going to win in 2008 posts". Perhaps so. I don't know. If and when they do, things are going to change so much. Just like they did when the Democrats took Congress. Yeah, that's right the Democrats took Congress in repudiation of the evil George Bush and now we are no longer in Iraq. The whole thing got defunded or at least subject to a timeline right? Not quite.

The worst thing that could happen to people like Doyle would be for the Democrats to win in 2008. Then he and people like him would have to face the reality of an increasing xenophobic and resurgent Russia, an increasingly aggressive criminal regime in China, a down right apocalyptic regime in Iran about to obtain nukes, a completely out of control Southern border open to South America where Chavez is in alliance with Iran and Hamas and providing fake documentation to agents entering the country, the very possibility of their being another 9-11 or worse, an aging and imploding Europe increasingly terrified of its Muslim minority and an Iraq that will disintegrate into Somalia times 100 and an al-Quda base of operations of their dreams if the U.S. leaves.

Reality drives policy sometimes. If the Democrats win in 2008, the reality won't change one bit. We will still be in Iraq, we will still have the patriot act, we will still face the prospect of terrorist attack at any time and that is if we are lucky. If we are not, 2007 will be 1914 and the real next world war will have already started.

Given that, I guess I can kind of understand why the weaker minded, rather than facing reality, prefer to think it all George Bush's fault and will somehow go away once he is gone. Have fun in denial Doyle.

Fen said...

It would be a package deal. Cheney would also be impeached and both would answer questions under oath about the decision to invade Iraq, the illegal NSA programs, etc

LOL. Wouldn't work out that way. Impeach Bush and the VP steps up and appoints a new VP. You can't take them down simultaneously. Try it. Please.

Doyle said...

Reality drives policy sometimes.

Such pre-9/11 thinking.

Simon said...

Doyle said...
"[Y]ou're clearly in a place from which it appears that Democrats do not have a massive advantage for the presidency by virtue of the current Republican president being such a historic disaster."

Opponents of the war have focussed on the decision to go to war. They have advanced no coherent plan about what to do now we're there. That made sense in the last election, when you weren't seeking the White House, because the public are far more clear that we shouldn't have gone than they are on what to do now. But it's going to be no advantage at all in 2008.

Fen said...
"[Doyle said it would be a package deal, wherein Cheney would also be impeached, but it] [w]ouldn't work out that way. Impeach Bush and the VP steps up and appoints a new VP. You can't take them down simultaneously."

There's no constitutional reason why Congress couldn't simultaneously impeach both the President and the veep, thereby triggering 3 U.S.C. § 19 and elevating Pelosi to the Presidency.

Fen said...

Not constitutional, logistical.

Bruce Hayden said...

LOL. Wouldn't work out that way. Impeach Bush and the VP steps up and appoints a new VP. You can't take them down simultaneously. Try it. Please.

Actually, the Democrats could possibly impeach both of them. But they would need a bunch of Republicans to get a conviction in the Senate, and is where the problem would arise. First, as noted, the Republican Senators would insist on replacing the VP before convicting the second of whichever was impeached second. And, as importantly, few, if any, would vote to convict, knowing that they wouldn't be able to run as a Republican for dog catcher if their vote put Pelosi in the White House.

My guess is that if the Democrats in the House vote out articles of impeachment for either Bush or Cheney, they won't be the majority in the House for at least another couple of decades. Remember, the Democrats took the House this last time by winning a bunch of districts that had gone for Bush/Cheney two years earlier. Impeaching the men that these voters voted for on essentially policy grounds is sure to drive many of the swing voters in these swing districts back into the Republican column.

Doyle said...

But Simon, the Republican candidates (except Ron Paul, of course) haven't made clear that they recognize that it was a mistake to invade.

They want to be the candidate who is most likely to attack Iran, while torturing prisoners (just like Jack Bauer!) and doubling the size of Guantanamo.

That's how you win the Republican nomination, and how you lose the general.

Cedarford said...

Ssomehow I don't see how the President is going to get blamed on this one; my suspicion is that this will not endear Brother Reid to Sen Kennedy and will be seen by the public as yet another legislative failure. While the President's approval ratings are in the toilet, the Congress' have already reached the septic tank. My guess is this will further depress them.

Roger, I disagree. Blame sticks to Bush II because of his ineptitude. He has the "kick me" sign pasted to his ass. NOLA after Katrina was far more the fault of BLanco, Nagin, and a barbarous underclass of helpless violent scum than Bush or the Fed government's fault (think how the US has had 80-90 major hurricanes hit cities with less urban scum and virtually no Fed help, no FEMA even in existence back then ---and managed).

Bush gets it in the ass again because he stupidly rushed out and put his tattered reputation behind the closed doors deal before he even had experts tell him that it was likely doomed...In his bubble, he no longer gets such advice, it seems on foreign or domestic matters.

I think the biggest damage is to McCain. More and more Republicans do not trust McCain not to go rushing off to join his "good Senate friends" like Kennedy, Feingold, Kerry on his idea of "bipartisan" schemes cooked up by liberals that McCain signs onto as just "little betrayals" of conservative stances justified because he is a former POW and a patriot...
McCain is toast after this. I hope.

*****************
John had a very good post about the realities emerging globally that menace America and have utterly nothing to do with who is in office in America. Something vapid Lefties that assume that a wonderful happy world at peace and in love with one another and polar bear safe will happen simply with the election of Obama-Rama, Noble Algore, or the Mother of the Nation Hillary giving the world intellent Nanny rules and guidance.

It shows how brain dead vapid Lefties are....as John mentions event after event that have nothing, nothing to do with whatever Moveon.org and other hyperpartisans wish for.

Doyle shows the dumbness in reflecting the obsession of not fixing anything, but the strange overriding imperative the Left fixates on of assigning blame for who said what about Iraq 5 years ago..Think the Iranians, Chavez, Jangaweed, China, Russia, radical Sunni honestly give a shit who is in office in America in two years?

Events are moving along regardless of domestic US politics. Bad events. As John said, have fun in denial of this, Doyle.

At best, the next leader Democratic or Republican - will lose roughly equivalent numbers of casualties in the US military and in the Homeland as Bush has. Or stand by passively and let Beijing gobble up Taiwan, the genocide in Darfur continue, and radical Islam expand the slaughter started in Iraq to all the Middle East. Let Iran get nuke weapons....At worse, WWIII starts, and we will be lucky to escape with Civil War era casualties and under 100K enemy within locked up by either the Republican or Democratic President.

********

Simon said...

Fen said...
"Not constitutional, logistical."

What's the logistical hurdle here that bars a dual impeachment but not a single impeachment? The biggest hurdle is that however much Harry and Brian might like to daydream about it, they have no chance of pushing those impeachments through this Senate. But that applies as much to a single impeachment as a dual impeachment. Okay, so assume for sake of argument that there's a Senate majority for removal. If so, there's no logistical hurdle. In the House, you hold hearings (not that it's strictly necessary to do so in this case, because the goal here isn't to discover any real malfeasance, it's just to remove a political enemy from office), then you bring the articles of impeachment against Bush and Cheney to the floor sequentially. First you impeach the vice-President and you send that to the Senate for trial. Then you impeach the President and you send that to the Senate for trial.

Your objection, I'm guessing, is that if you remove Cheney first, then Bush nominates a new veep, while if you remove Bush first, Cheney becomes President and nominates a new veep; ergo, no matter what, there will never be a vacancy triggering § 19 and propelling Nancy into the oval office. The problem with this objection is that it skips a step: what happens when the President nominates a new veep? The House and Senate have to approve that selection. U.S. Const., Amdt. 25, § 2. For the House to approve the selection, the majority (and indeed, the Speaker) have to bring the nomination to the floor. So your logistical hurdle presumes exactly what an impeachment would prove the absence of: good faith. If you're impeaching both the President and the veep concurrently, per Brian's fantasy, the Democrats generally and Pelosi personally have every incentive in the world to keep that nomination off the floor.

Of course, you could say that the public would never stand for such naked partisanship, but such an act would be no less nakedly partisan than the impeachment procedings themselves, and a party undertaking such has obviously calculated (rightly or wrongly) that they're not going to suffer politically for such naked partisanship. Worse yet, you could say that such a course of action would subvert longstanding constitutional norms of the American polity for partisan gain. Of course it would. And if they had the votes, they'd do it in a heartbeat. These people couldn't care less about constitutional text, what on earth makes you think they care about mere constitutional norms?

Doyle said...

NOLA after Katrina was far more the fault of BLanco, Nagin, and a barbarous underclass of helpless violent scum

Well whoever the GOP nominee is, I just hope he'll consider adding Cedarford to his speechwriting team.

Simon said...

Doyle said...
"But Simon, the Republican candidates ... haven't made clear that they recognize that it was a mistake to invade."

But Brian, that's irrelevant. I'm going to try and explain this as concisely as I can: IT DOESN'T MATTER WHETHER THEY THINK IF WAS A MISTAKE TO INVADE. It's just not relevant in the context of an election where the people who made that decision are not on the ballot. That decision is behind us. It is now the battleground of history books, not elections. You can keep running around telling Tojo that it was a mistake to bomb Pearl Harbor, but that won't take back the act. The American people aren't stupid; they understand that you can't unbreak an egg. What they're interested in is what you propose to cook with it now it's broken, not how hot under the collar you are about the decision to break it.

Mabe if you tried listening to what Ann says on the radio when this subject comes up, instead of mindlessly sniping at her, you'd figure this out.

Doyle said...

Simon -

Given the eerie similarity between what the hawks were saying about Iraq then and what they're saying about Iran now, wouldn't it be worthwhile to know what the next president's thoughts are regarding preventive war in the Middle East?

Doyle said...

Oh does Ann expound on her support for the Iraq War on the radio? That would be great!

See, the impression she leaves on the blog is that, you know, the terrorists hit us on 9/11 so we have to hit them back. And where do you go to hit the terrorists? The Middle East! But you seem to be suggesting it's a lot more nuanced than that.

Also, for your groundbreaking omelette metaphor to hold, everyone would have to agree that the eggs are in fact broken, and will not hatch into a safe, democratic Iraq any day now.

Simon said...

Doyle said...
"Given the eerie similarity between what the hawks were saying about Iraq then and what they're saying about Iran now, wouldn't it be worthwhile to know what the next president's thoughts are regarding preventive war in the Middle East?"

Are you denying that Iran is building the capacity for a nuclear weapons program?

(Plus, any Presidential candidate who foreswore preemptive strikes in any circumstances would be per se unfit for office. That's one of those "never say never" questions.)


"Oh does Ann expound on her support for the Iraq War on the radio? That would be great!"

I don't know about the one this morning, much to my chagrin I wasn't able to listen today, but she has done on past shows.


"[Y]ou seem to be suggesting it's a lot more nuanced than that."

I'm suggesting that her position is rooted in the reality of where we are now, compared to the meaningless recriminations levied for partisan gain of your position. I don't think you grasp what the consequences of pulling troops out are at this point, which is where any assessment of accepting defeat in Iraq (which, to be clear, is your position) ought to begin.

Doyle said...

You don't seem to grasp the consequences of having invaded and stayed there, even though we've been witnessing them for four years.

But sure I'll take your doomsday predictions seriously. You've obviously got a pretty keen eye for trouble.

Revenant said...

From the man who brought you "Immigration is the Iraq of domestic policy." Nobody draws facile analogies like the Mickster.

Maybe, but that analogy is a good one. Illegal immigration is roughly as popular as the war in Iraq, and public opinions on the current "comprehensive" bill are roughly as negative as public opinions of the situation in Iraq.

Dave said...

Seems to me that some people here have little knowledge of history. In 1968, LBJ, possibly at that point the most unpopular President of the 20th Century, had his *VP* running to succeed him. Despite LBJ's massive unpopularity, Humphrey lost by a mere .7% of the vote.

It remains to be seen if someone not directly connected to the Bush Administration will be as easily defeated as the Left seems to think. If I were a consultant, I certainly wouldn't bank on it.

Fen said...

Simon: So your logistical hurdle presumes exactly what an impeachment would prove the absence of: good faith.

Good point. Thanks for the correction.

Fen said...

Dolye: Given the eerie similarity between what the hawks were saying about Iraq then and what they're saying about Iran now, wouldn't it be worthwhile to know what the next president's thoughts are regarding preventive war in the Middle East

As well as what he would do with Iran. You speak of eerie similarity - what of the failure of multilateral institutions to reign in Iraq [17 resolutions, 13 years, Oil for Food scandal, bribery by Saddam, etc]. Would Hillary or Obama take us down that path again?

what the hawks were saying about Iraq then and what they're saying about Iran

And again, I keep asking "What real evidence do we have that Iran has a WMD progam, and how is that evidence any better than what we had re Iraq?"

And you guys continue to ignore the question. Likely because you already know the answer - we have less evidence than what we had on Iraq. For every bit of "proof" you can find on Iran, I can find a mirror-image of same proof on Iraq.

Saddam was overthrown because he refused to verify he had given up on his WMD programs. Defied the UN's multilateral approach of exercising "diplomacy" and "soft power". So how can you look at the same pattern with Iran and take pre-emptive force off the table?

Cedarford is right when he predicts a Democrat administration will stand by passively and let Beijing gobble up Taiwan, the genocide in Darfur continue, and radical Islam expand the slaughter started in Iraq to all the Middle East. Let Iran get nuke weapons... They will revert to a pre 9-11 mentality, claim that we shouldn't attack our enemies while they gather strength; then later claim we can't attack our enemies because they have grown too strong. They'll kick the can down the road and party [echo New Orleans]. And when Los Angeles or Baghdad or Tel Aviv gets vaporized, they'll blame Bush.

Thats the Democrat foreign policy in a nutshell.

Steven said...

And, of course, the winner over Humphrey was Nixon, who could hardly be viewed as more anti-war than Humphrey.

In fact, no anti-war candidate in U.S. history has won the Presidency in a time of war. Either the incumbent who is fighting the war has been re-elected, or there was no incumbent running and a hawk won. Every single time.

Does it mean it's impossible for a dove to win? No. But it hardly suggests that a Republican candidate in '08 will be doomed for hawkishness.

Revenant said...

In 1968, LBJ, possibly at that point the most unpopular President of the 20th Century

Minor quibble unrelated to your point: in '68 LBJ's approval ratings bottomed out at 35%. By the end of his second term, Truman's were down to 22%. No President -- not even Nixon -- has gotten that low since.

That's food for thought for people who think that lousy approval ratings guarantee negative ratings in the history books. Nixon and Truman were almost matched in how hated they were, but in the long run Truman ended up ranked as one of the best Presidents of the century, and Nixon one of the worst.

Fen said...

/sorry doyle, I did it again. You can call me Fern if it helps

Rasmussen had a good analysis of why the bill failed:

"...It wasn’t amnesty or guest-worker programs or paths to citizenship that doomed the bill. Each of those provisions made it more difficult for some segments of the population to accept. However, most voters were willing to accept them as part of a true compromise that accomplished the primary goal of reducing illegal immigration.

The key to winning voter support was to accomplish that primary goal.

The Senators missed that point and that’s where the mystery resides in analyzing why this bill failed. It’s not unusual for political leaders to be out of touch with their constituents, but rarely this out of touch. How could something this unpopular with voters get so close to passage in a legislative body that is supposed to represent them..."

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/current_events/top_stories/why_the_senate_immigration_bill_failed

Cedarford said...

Revenant - That's food for thought for people who think that lousy approval ratings guarantee negative ratings in the history books. Nixon and Truman were almost matched in how hated they were, but in the long run Truman ended up ranked as one of the best Presidents of the century, and Nixon one of the worst.

Truman, IMO, wasn't among the best, and Nixon certainly won't be rated among the worst.

The "doctrines" TRuman was credited with largely came out of the old KKK-friendly Southern Democrats in Congress that still did stellar things with setting America up to fight Communism and make America strong. Truman went year after year with dumb decision after decision where Congress either set him straight, told him how it was going to be, or bailed him out.

As for Nixon, other than LBJ and FDR, no President had greater impact on domestic and foreign policy in the 20th Century. Not even TDR & Reagan. All Reagan did was bring potlatch to the table Nixon set. We also know that the press mostly buried the sleaze they knew of related to Truman confederates, JFK's numerous pecadillos, and the world's wealthiest ex-Texas school teacher, yet went full bore from both Hollywood and MSM against Nixon because he "wrongly assailed our fellow Jews&Lefties as spies and pinkos along with Noble Alger Hiss". Even Clinton, with some major sleaze, caught a far better break from the MSM on his China donors, lying under oath, attempt to take away 2nd Amendment Rights, and jackboot fascist raids than Nixon ever did.

Only problem for the "Nixon-prosecutors" that sought his head for 20 years and finally got it over his "McCarthyism" is the fall of the Soviets revealed documents on top of the Venona cables that sjowed Hiss and the hollywood, union, DOD spy ring Jews&Lefties Nixon went after on the HUAC were indeed all guilty after all, and Soviet-run.

And of course, after Nixon we had Ford, Carter and Bush II to once again refresh us on how bad for the country truly inept Presidents are. Buchanan and Pierce were too far in the past, and Warren Harding fortunately died before his stench really spread.

Most consequential Presidents of the 20th Century were, IMO, and in order:
FDR
LBJ
Nixon
Reagan
TDR
Eisenhower
Wilson
Truman
Clinton

Nothing like a bumbling fool with the world in a major growing mess to make you wish for a Jackson, TDR, Nixon, or Reagan to arrive to the rescue to fix Bush II's mess as Reagan fixed Carter's.

Revenant said...

Truman, IMO, wasn't among the best, and Nixon certainly won't be rated among the worst.

Nixon established diplomatic relations with China. This concludes the list of positive accomplishments by Richard M. Nixon.

On the negative side, he lost the Vietnam war, abandoned Southeast Asia to the Communists (but not before causing lots of damage to the region), expanded the federal bureaucracy to an extent not seen since FDR, foisted the EPA and OSHA onto us, fucked over future generations by indexing Social Security to inflation, and established the MOST idiotic economic policies of the last seventy years in the form of wage and price controls -- sending the nation straight into the economic disaster of the later 70s. On top of that, he managed to simultaneously (a) stick us with affirmative action programs and (b) permanently alienate minority voters from voting Republican by recruiting most of the old racist Democrats to the party. Nice going, Dick, what do you do for an encore?

Nixon is already ranked in the bottom quintile, and he's not going anywhere. I shudder to think what kind of modern President would actually manage to be worse than him. Nobody -- not Carter, not Clinton, not either of the Bushes -- has managed to come anywhere close yet.

hdhouse said...

Simon...(i'll not call you a brain dead idiot and just for fun move past that)..

i do know that bush isn't running again..duhhh...the point was that comparing his polling numbers to approvals of congress is not germane. bush's polling numbers indicate that if he were running he would get creamed. national polling numbers HOWEVER do not reflect local popularity. americans hate congress generally but they like (generally) their local reprentative or senator.

the national poll numbers for congress has nothing to do with the individual, just the congress on whole.

why is that part so hard to figure out? ohhhh brain dead..i forgot.

Simon said...

Revenant said...
"Nixon established diplomatic relations with China. This concludes the list of positive accomplishments by Richard M. Nixon."

He also nominated William H. Rehnquist, one of the most important and influential jurists of the 20th century, to the Supreme Court.

(Of course, if we're including WHR as a positive, I suppose you also have to count nominating Harry Blackmun as a negative. No comment on Burger and Powell.)

Revenant said...

He also nominated William H. Rehnquist, one of the most important and influential jurists of the 20th century, to the Supreme Court.

I'm quite unconvinced that Rehnquist was a net positive. He ruled the way Republicans wanted him to rule, but he did very little to reign in the excesses of the 20th century Court.

Simon said...

Revenant said...
"I'm quite unconvinced that Rehnquist was a net positive. ... [H]e did very little to reign in the excesses of the 20th century Court."

On the court, he did what he could with the votes he had. Beyond the court, I think he was massively influential in shaping the next generation of legal conservatives. I know people are unhappy with him about some cases - particularly Dickerson and Hibbs - can be explained. I didn't agree with Rehnquist on everything, by any means, but I do think he was a superb nominee, if accidentally so, and is probably one of the most important Justices in the history of the court. It's hard to overstate how important that nomination was, and given the raw material he had to work with, I think it's unfair to ask more of him than what he was able to deliver. Today's court is unrecognizable from the court Rehnquist joined, and as much or more than any other one person - with the possible exception of Ed Meese, I think he deserves the credit for that.