Patterico's Pontifications


We Can Get Transcripts Now, E.J.!

Filed under: Judiciary — Patterico @ 10:39 am

E.J. Dionne makes The Case For a ‘No’ Vote on Roberts, and says something that elicited a snicker from me:

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said that some of Roberts’s potential opponents seemed to be saying that “the only way you can have a good heart is adopt my value system.” That, Graham insisted, does “a great disservice to the judiciary.”

But the doubts about Roberts have nothing to do with his good heart. The issue is the power about to be put in his hands and into the hands of President Bush’s next appointee — power both will enjoy for life. The Senate and the public have a right to far more assurance about how Roberts would use that power than they have been given in these hearings. The Senate is under no obligation to give the president or Roberts the benefit of the doubt.

Did E.J. Dionne just say that “the doubts about Roberts have nothing to do with his good heart”?

I think he did!

Either Dionne didn’t listen to the hearings, or he’s trying to bamboozle you. The Democrats went on and on about Roberts’s heart. Graham simply responded to that, and made the point that it’s a lame argument.

The proof is in the transcript.

Here are some excerpts from Thursday’s hearings. Start with Teddy Kennedy:

SEN. KENNEDY: At the outset of my questions, I talked about Earl Warren. And you were enormously complimentary about Earl Warren, about him understanding not only the law, but also understanding the importance of a chief justice, bringing other justices together in a very important way in terms of dealing with a societal issue and a question. And I think we’re a fairer country and a fairer land because of this.

This was really the bringing together of the mind and the heart. Oliver Wendell Holmes said, It’s dangerous to think about legal issues can be worked out like mathematics.

And another nominee who was here not too long ago had this to say about the head and the heart: What you worry about is someone trying to decide an individual case without thinking out the effect of that decision on a lot of cases. That is why I always think law requires both a heart and a head. If you do not have a heart, it becomes a sterile set of rules removed from human problems and it will not help. If you do not have a head, there is the risk that in trying to decide a particular person’s problem in a case, that may look fine for that person, but you cause trouble for a lot of other people, making their lives yet worse.

(And, Sen. Kennedy, you are living proof that you can also cause a lot of trouble for other people if you have a really big head.)

Next comes Chuckie S.:

SEN. SCHUMER: I said on the first days of these hearings it’s important to determine not just the quality of your mind but the fullness of your heart, which to I think a good number of us at least on side of the aisle really mean the ability to truly empathize with those who are less fortunate and who often need the protections of the government and the assistance of the law to have any chance at all.

And then — and only then — did Lindsey Graham respond to these soliloquies about Roberts’s heart. And his comments made it clear that he did not consider that to be the issue:

SEN. GRAHAM: Your heart — nobody can question your intellect, because it would be a question of their intellect to question yours…


… so we’re down to the heart. And is it all coming down to that?

Well, there are all kind of hearts. There are bleeding hearts and there are hard hearts. And if I wanted to judge Justice Ginsburg on her heart, I might take a hard-hearted view of her and say she’s a bleeding heart. She represents the ACLU. She wants the age of consent to be 12. She believes there’s a constitutional right to prostitution. What kind of heart is that?

Well, she has a different value system than I do. But that doesn’t mean she doesn’t have a good heart. And I want this committee to understand that if we go down this road of putting people’s hearts in play, and the only way you can have a good heart is, Adopt my value system, we’re doing a great disservice to the judiciary.

Thank you.

And thank you to the transcript, for revealing the trickery of E.J. Dionne.

UPDATE: Tim Noah says it was unfair for Sen. Graham to claim Justice Ginsburg advocated 12 as the age of consent.

One Response to “We Can Get Transcripts Now, E.J.!”

  1. Free at last:

    Democrats can play fast and loose with the facts only so long as their sycophant allies in the MSM cover for them, refuse to acknowledge the lies, produce glowing reports about how wonderful and caring the liars really are, and then launch bitter partisan attacks on those who rightly object. It’s an old game. It works rather well when one side has a virtual monopoly in the print and broadcast media..

    However, the advent of talk radio and the Internet have provided access to an audience without the previous controls and filters Democrats and “professional Journalists” have used to force feed collectivist propaganda to the American public. E J Dionne can’t twist the facts anymore to make underhanded charges against good and honest men who simply don’t kowtow to his ego or pay homage to an outworn creed. In times past heretics where burned at the stake, now they blog.

    Meanwhile, down on The Animal Farm, the Pigs are uneasy and starting to squeal a bit more than usual about the turn of recent events, and the horses are getting decidedly restless.

    Black Jack (ee9fe2)

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