January 30, 2007

"I fear that Judge Alito will ... roll over when confronted with an administration too willing to flaunt the rules...."

Yes, we need judges who dare to tell the administration to quit waving the rules about in a showy fashion.

I know it's awfully late to point out usage errors from the Alito confirmation battle, but I was just reading up on Senator Hillary Clinton. I recorded a Bloggingheads episode yesterday, and my co-head, Mark Schmitt, let loose with a remark about Clinton's great accomplishments as a Senator. I was incredulous and went looking to see if there was something I'd failed to notice. (The diavlog isn't up yet, but I'll update with a link when it is.)

These Senators. They're always running for President, and their main accomplishment is that they are Senators. And that they can get themselves reelected.

UPDATE: The episode is up. The moment referred to is at about 36:40.


Anonymous said...

If you got it, flaunt it.

Hamsun56 said...

...and their main accomplishment is that they are Senators. And that they can get themselves reelected.

In her case that is an accomplishment. Especially doing so well in the Republican upstate areas of New York in her reelection.

That says nothing little about her qualifications to be President, but something about her electability nationally. A few years back, most people, including myself, thought she had no chance to win the presidency. While not now inevitable, it is now not unthinkable.

Bruce Hayden said...

One of my pet peeves - that so many consider the job of Senator as being good experience for the presidency, or, indeed, much of anything outside the Senate.

Think about it - what do Senators do with their lives? They raise money for reelection. They work deals that make their kids money (sorry, got distracted by the new Majority Leader). They talk. And, of course, they raise money for reelection.

Now, looking at the presidency, just some of his jobs are:
- Manage hundreds of millions of dollar budget.
- Appoint and manage cabinet.
- Manage millions of civilian employees and a million and a half or so military personel.
- Represent the country at state occaseions.
- Negotiate with other countries for just about anything imaginable.
- Oversee federal criminal justice system.
- Appoint a lot of people, including some to lifetime jobs.

I am sure there are a lot that I missed. But there seems very little overlap between the job skills developed as a Senator (did I mention raising money for reelection?) and required for the presidency.

Note though that there is a lot of overlap between being governor of a state and the presidency. Or of the former general of all allied forces in Europe during the later half of WWII. Or even of the former head of the CIA, etc. Which leaves us with five former VPs and JFK in my lifetime. And at least some of the VPs could claim gaining some relevant experience there.

Yet, election after election, we see a lot of Senators running, and, more surprisingly, being taken seriously. LBJ at least had been Majority Leader before VP and president (as we Bob Dole for a bit). But Gary Hart, John McCain, John Kerry, John Edwards, and now Hillary Clinton and Barak Obama, didn't/don't even have that level of experience.

BTW, by my definition of the qualifications required for the job, I would think that Bill Richardson and Mitt Romney, in that order, would be the best qualified of the current crop of applicants for the job. Indeed, Richardson is one of the best qualified to run for the post that I can remember, with a surplus of diplomatic, executive, and administrative experience.

paul a'barge said...

Oh wow, what a great website (the common English errors!)

That baby is BAH-BOOKMARKED!!

Muchas gracias.

vbspurs said...

*flouts her Rolex watch at Althousians*

P.S.: I know that it's a speech from her official website, Ann, but couldn't it be, just for the sake of charity to Senator Clinton, that it was a typo from the web transcriber?

As Althouse-referred Judy Tenuta says, it could happen!

WV: bmcmcmmqat, sheesh.