Wednesday, September 24, 2003
Judicial nominees, again: Sen. Orrin Hatch calls the New York Times editorial page on its hypocrisy.
You make a plea for "straight talk on judicial nominees" (editorial, Sept. 10), though your own talk has not always been consistent.
On Jan. 1, 1995, an editorial proclaimed, "Time to Retire the Filibuster." Yet on Feb. 13 of this year, you changed your tune, saying "Keep Talking About Miguel Estrada."
You claim that "Mr. Estrada would not answer senators' questions." In fact, he answered more than 125 questions, at his hearing and in writing afterward.
Mr. Estrada's caution about discussing issues and precedents that he would likely face as an appeals court judge is the same as previous Supreme Court nominees'. Democrats defended them and voted for them, yet they filibustered Mr. Estrada for taking that same position.
Sen. Hatch, you just don't get it. Those were liberal judicial nominees who were pro-choice, "living Constitution," elitist, activists. Estrada was (probably) pro-life and a strict constructionist. The two situations are different. If you lowly, uneducated, easy-to-control Republicans could only understand the difference.