Thursday, January 12, 2006

Round 3 of questioning - it's been going on since 8am. I'll update when there is a break.

You want a card with no money on it, just with the company's name and our credit card company's logo, what you want is a business card, sir.

If you call me for information, turn down your radio so that it is not blaring in my ear, while I try to give you the information you called about.

Also, don't call me if you are in a car with the windows open so that the sound of the rushing wind is all I hear, and I can just barely make out what you are saying, even when the volume is turned all the way up-at the expense of my hearing.

Direct questioning of the nominee is OVER!

Ok, here's the roundup of the final questioning by the senators of the nominee:

Leahy (D)
Hits on the jurisdiction of the court and end of life judgements...

Kennedy (D)
Hits Vanguard again-why did you fail to put it on the list of cases you should recuse yourself from immediately after promising this committee that you would? Discusses how the founder of the Unitary executive theory says the theory obliterates the independence of independent agencies, how can we believe that alito subscribes to this theory but in a toned down way - especially given evidence to the contrary? CAP - again, why join in the first place and why put on the job application? Summarizes alitos responses from the past 2 days - "We do expect fairness."

Hatch (R)
Rebuts Vanguard again, says it's not important. Not important that he didn't keep his word ...he's done no wrong...even though we impeached Clinton for telling a little lie...

Biden (D)
Asks what would be necessary to go to war without Congressional dodge evade

Kohl (D)
Concerns about eminent domain...

Feinstein (D)
talks about the plenary power of the president...has alito stumped for several moments...raises environmental issues, alito almost always sides with the government...

Grassley (R)
attempts to rebut the unitary exec theory. no idea what he's talking about, completely loses me...

Feingold (D)
Does an excellent job of getting at who was at the practice sessions and what kind of ethical implications that poses. Hits on inherent presidential authority to ignore statutes..gays and employment .. anti harassment - makes alito look really bad on a case where he supported hate speech as an expression of the 1st amendment in schools. Brings up the ethics of having judges from alito's court testifying later today on his behalf.

Schumer (D)
what's the difference between wiretapping and physically searching American's homes without a warrant? alito sounds cowed during much of schumer's questioning. talks about strict constructionism - forces alito to fail to answer the question about American born illegals getting citizenship as a requirement of the Constitution. Says that he cannot comment on this case because it might come before the court - however, he did comment on one man one vote, even though as DiFi pointed out yesterday, there are four cases before the Supremes related to OPOV.

Sessions (R)
I am such and idiot, I'm going to babble on and on ... here's a softball question: how's your family, show us your non-robot side. Talk about yourself some....
Anyone not mentioned, I didn't hear or else they forfeited the balance of their time. Note that all of the dems took at least part of their allotted time. Schumer and Leahy both expressed their continued reservations about Alito and their hesitation to vote yes on the nominee.


we won't talk about every witness, I'll comment if something interesting comes up...

Issues that I find troubling:

Alito can't seem to come up with a good reason why he would have put this on his 1985 application if he was not active in the group. And he doesn't seem to recall being a member of the group.

He promised the committee when he became an appellate court judge that he would not hear any cases having to do with Vanguard. It does not appear that he added Vanguard to his recusal list, and ended up taking and ruling on a Vanguard case. The problem was later corrected, but it is troubling that he did not add Vanguard to his recusal list after promising the committee that he would.

Rule of 4
The rule of 4 refers to the rule that when a death row inmate requests a stay and four justices agree that he should have it, a fifth will concede to be the fifth, because it takes 5 to stay an execution. Alito had no idea that this "rule" existed. It troubles me that he would know so little about Supreme court policy.

Roe v Wade
Alito never gave a satisfactory answer that he would uphold Roe, and all evidence suggests that he would vote to overturn Roe.

Exec Power
Alito never gave a satisfactory answer on the limits to presidential power, and subscribes to an obscure theory, the unitary executive theory, that would give the President supreme power over the Congress and the Supreme Court, forever disrupting the checks and balances that makes our government work.

Alito seems to have a record of siding with the government - especially, when it comes to law enforcement. Mother Jones has five cases.

FRC Golden Gavel
The Family Research Council awarded Alito their golden gavel award for his rulings..the FRC is a right-wing, anti-gay hate group.

Geneva Convention
Asked what he thought about the Geneva Convention, Alito responded that he was unfamiliar with the document. In addition, he has shown an unwillingness to even consider foreign law, even though much of American law is an outgrowth of English common law.
Bork comparisonAlito's admiration of failed Supreme Court nominee Judge Bork is especially troubling, on the face of it.

2:16pm sir, I don't think that I can transfer you to the President of the company, I'll transfer you to his admin.

"I received a gift card and the place that I want to use the card does not accept the credit card company that backs the gift card, so what am I supposed to do with this card?" Uh, use it anywhere else that credit card is accepted, because it is virtually everywhere, unless you live on the moon. And I've just been informed, we are also accepted on the moon. "Thanks a lot" - all snarky-like. GRR.

I can't believe that I have to sit here for one hour and 40 more minutes. This is the first day in a couple of days that it has dragged. Oh, there have been high points today, you gotta love facebook, but this whole "data entry" thing is making my head spin and making me want to vomit. Literally, I feel nauseous.

Did anyone here what happened at WashU earlier this week? So they're adding an extension onto the Psycho, uh, I mean PSYCH building (build build build), and one of those giant cranes fell onto the building! One of the hydraulic pistons gave way, causing the boom of the crane to slice through the new buildings 2 foot thick concrete floor like butter and then impact the Psych building with enough force to open up a 10ft x 10ft whole in the ceiling. No one told WashU for 2 hours after the accident even though the Psych building had to be evacuated because the fire marshal could not vouch for the integrity of the floor where the boom impacted. Oops.

Oh LORD...these witnesses are dull.

Forty-two minutes remain.


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5:10 PM  

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