Saturday, February 07, 2004


The National Review, in its latest issue, sticks it to Senate majority leader Bill Frist. (No link, subscription only. Speaking of which, it's the best 19.95 you'll spend all year.)

Let's say you're Bill Frist, the Senate majority leader. A junior Republican staffer on the Judiciary Committee has discovered a way to peek at internal Democratic memos concerning the battle over the president's judicial nominees. The memos are bombshells. One strongly suggests that Democrats tried to influence the outcome of a pending case in a federal court by delaying the confirmation of one of the president's appeals-court choices. Another reveals that Democrats opposed another GOP nominee because "he is Latino, and the White House seems to be grooming him for a Supreme Court appointment." Almost all the memos show Democrats practically taking orders from the left-wing interest groups most dedicated to stopping the president's nominees. So what do you, Senator Frist, do about that? Why, you crack down, and crack down hard — on Republicans. You go along with a Democrat-inspired investigation, not of the conduct described in the memos but of the way the memos became public. Even when you learn that no Republican stole any memos or hacked into any computers — as it turns out, they were available to anyone who logged into the committee's system — you're still not satisfied. You want the resignation of one of your own senior staffers, who used to work for the Judiciary Committee and saw the memos there. In the end, Democrats will pay no price for the behavior documented in the memos, while Republicans, on your orders, will flog themselves for discovering that behavior. Now that's leadership.



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