Thursday, May 08, 2008

The Supreme argument

Are Obamaroids making the rounds jamming pro-Hillary blogs with fear tactics? Doncha know the Supreme Court is at stake!?! Crikey.

When Democratic senators joined the Cons to confirm Roberts and Alito, they tilted the U.S. Supreme Court to a decidedly conservative bent (see roll call at the bottom). Tom Goldstein at SCOTUSBlog summarized in September 2007:

As one of the most conservative in recent memory, the just-completed 2006 Term has recently served as a rallying cry for progressives. The two most prominent cases (by an order of magnitude) involved hot-button social issues - race and abortion - and both resulted in significant conservative rulings. Moreover, the Ledbetter case (opinion [PDF] here), in which the Court limited Title VII’s backpay remedy, continues to receive significant attention as the Democratic Congress considers legislation to overrule it. . . Those cases (along with, for example, the Wisconsin Right to Life campaign finance decision) were all decided by the same five-Justice majority composed of the Court’s most conservative members.

Essentially, we have a 5-4 right-wing SCOTUS that favors business and wingnut interests over American citizens. Anyone paying attention rather than trying to score Obama talking points would realize the damage already done. BDBlue challenges the spiel about Roe v. Wade:

If Obama becomes the party nominee, as seems likely, those of us who are not Obama supporters will get an earful on why we have to vote for him in November. Some of these reasons will be fairly good ones. One of them, IMO, is not. That one is that of course we all have to support Obama, think of the Supreme Court. This one is often aimed at those of us who are women with the implied threat that if we don’t fall in line and be good girls, we’ll lose our rights under Roe v. Wade.

I call bullshit on this argument. I will not have my body held hostage by the Democratic - or any - political party.

High five, BDBlue, and precisely why I am voting this November for a presidential candidate who's pro-choice but the name isn't Obama. Secondly, coercive rhetoric and playing the guilt card--a hypocritical move if Mr New Kind of Politics ain't no fraud--offend my liberal conscience and I reject efforts to extort my vote. Freedom = freedom and I denounce activities, zealotry, or compromises that attempt to subvert it.

The electoral prize, IMO, is electing a liberal Democratic majority in the House and Senate. BDBlue:

McCain cannot stack the Supreme Court or any Court with wing-nut judges by himself. His nominees have to be confirmed by the Senate. A Senate that will almost certainly be controlled by Democrats, probably with an increased majority. Why should I have to worry about Roe v. Wade or any other core constitutional right? While the Democrats would inevitably have to compromise on some issues with a Republican president (just as Obama will have to compromise some to get legislation through the Senate given the unlikelihood of a filibuster-proof majority), surely a body that is controlled by the Democratic Party will fight for my right to control my body. And if they won’t, then why am I electing any of them to Congress?

Another significant consideration are state elections and referendums. The fight to roll back pro-choice has been and will continue at the state level, for example: petition drives, ballot/legislative measures to ban abortion (South Dakota), add restrictions (California), and amend state constitutions to define a "person" as a zygote (Colorado, Georgia). Supporting the right to choose and the right to privacy begins in local communities and states.

I have never stated that I will stay home in November. I will vote in the general election due to referendums and local, state, congressional, and presidential candidates vetted and deemed worthy of my vote. I erased Obama from the list long before Super Tuesday. The more I see him, hear him, and learn about his liaisons, public record, and policies--I know how to visit his website--the more satisfied I am with my decision.

Case closed.

POSTSCRIPT: Senate Democrats who voted to confirm John Roberts as Chief Justice in 2005:

Baucus (D-MT)
Byrd (D-WV)
Carper (D-DE)
Conrad (D-ND)
Dodd (D-CT) WTF?!
Dorgan (D-ND)
Feingold (D-WI) WTF?!
Johnson (D-SD)
Kohl (D-WI)
Landrieu (D-LA)
Leahy (D-VT) WTF?!
Levin (D-MI) WTF?!
Lieberman (DINO-CT)
Lincoln (D-AR)
Murray (D-WA)
Nelson (D-FL)
Nelson (D-NE)
Pryor (D-AR)
Rockefeller (D-WV)
Salazar (D-CO)
Wyden (D-OR)

Senate Democrats who voted to confirm Samuel Alito to the SCOTUS in 2006:

Byrd (D-WV)
Conrad (D-ND)
Johnson (D-SD)
Nelson (D-NE)