No, keep reading; you haven’t heard this one yet. Revel in this delicious hypocrisy from Harry Reid:
Good morning. I’m Harry Reid from Nevada, the Democratic Leader in the Senate.
This weekend, spring has made it to Washington DC. From the window in my office in the Capitol, I can see down the Mall, past the Washington Monument and to the Lincoln Memorial. It’s a long way from my hometown of Searchlight, Nevada, and it’s quite a view. The famous cherry blossoms are in full bloom and the city is crowded with visitors — especially young people, here with their families or with their schools.
As the kids line up at the National Archives to see the original copies of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, they’ll learn about “checks and balances” and “freedom of speech.” And when they’re done, I wish they would come down the street to the Capitol and teach some of what they’ve learned to the Congressional leaders of the Republican Party.
You see, in the past weeks, we’ve seen Republicans in Congress abuse their power in too many ways. We have a Republican leader threatening judges who protect our rights and corrupting our government by running roughshod over the ethics committee to protect himself.
Republicans are trying to increase their power even if it means ignoring rules that go back to America’s beginnings. They seem to think that they know better than our Founding Fathers. Somehow, I doubt that’s true.
In their latest move, President Bush and the Republican leadership are trying to ram through radical choices for judges who will serve a lifetime on the bench. They are trying to eliminate a two-hundred-year-old American rule that says that every member of the Senate has the right to rise to say their piece and speak on behalf of the people that sent them here.
This isn’t about some arcane procedures of the Senate. It is about protecting liberty and our limited government.
This isn’t about politics. In the past…two Democratic Presidents tried to take control of the judicial branch and Americans of all political stripes rightly spoke up to defeat those efforts.
It isn’t even about judges. The fact is that this President has a better record of having his judicial nominees approved than any President in the past twenty-five years. Only ten of 214 nominations have been turned down. And those ten had views that were totally out-of-touch with the mainstream values Americans share.
When it comes down to it, stripping away these important checks and balances is about the arrogance of those in power who want to rewrite the rules so that they can get their way.
It would mean that the U.S. Senate becomes merely a rubber stamp for the president.
It would mean that one political party – be it Republicans today or Democrats tomorrow – gets to have all the say over our nation’s highest courts.
It would remove the checks on the President’s power…meaning that one man, sitting in the White House, could personally hand out lifetime jobs to judges whose rulings on our basic rights can last forever.
That’s not how America works.
Here, in America, the people rule – and all the people have a voice.
Here, in America, our judges should be independent – not puppets dancing to the pull of one person in power or one political party’s agenda.
We cannot sit by and allow the corruption of America’s values in America’s Congress. The Republicans who run Washington should start using their power for the good of all Americans, not abusing it for their own benefit.
Our Constitution tells us that the courts should be free from political pressure and that our rights are protected by checks and balances.
Our children know that you can’t change the rules just to get your way. I think it’s time that Washington Republicans remembered those truths.
This is Senator Harry Reid. Thanks for listening.
Mad props to Morgen R. for that wonderful link. But please: don’t just read the transcript. Go to this link and listen to this mook solemnly intone these words. It really is the only way you get the full effect.
Isn’t that beautiful? The absolute professed devotion to principles, and the determined denial that it has anything to do with politics or judges, is not only classic hypocrisy of the first rank, but it also really helps put the lie to all the explanations we’re hearing today for why every Democrat on Earth has had a change of heart on this issue.
Now for the stuff you’ve already read and heard today — just in case any of you missed it. First, if you want some other juicy Harry Reid quotes on this issue, many are collected here (thanks to Hot Air). More analysis from Roger Pilon via Instapundit.
And now, of course, we have the Liar in Chief:
Between all this and the rank and laughable hypocrisy from the New York Times that I revealed earlier this evening, it is absolutely astounding that any thinking person would take any of these people seriously ever again.
AND NOW, FOR A SHORT AND JOYOUS THUMB-SUCKER ABOUT WHAT IT ALL MEANS: To me, this is liberating. I never believed in filibustering judicial nominees to begin with. Elections have consequences. Presidents deserve an up or down vote. The filibuster does not comport with the Constitution and it never did. We were fools to let the Democrats do it. Fools. Now, it’s never going to happen again. It is good and damned well never going to happen to a solid Republican nominee like Miguel Estrada again. Ever.
And those people who fretted about how they would take it from us if we took it from them? Guess what? We didn’t take it from them and they still took it from us. So what good did that achieve? Huh?
And please. Don’t assign any weight to the notion that the filibuster is still good for Supreme Court nominees. That’s the same sucker’s bet that you guys took when you let Democrats filibuster Miguel Estrada and try to filibuster Alito. You know what? The filibuster is still there for Supreme Court nominees . . . until the Democrats decide that it isn’t. And then, it won’t be. Read that Harry Reid quote again, and tell me that you think there is an ounce of principle on the Democratic side in the entire Senate. The second they decide they need to take away the filibuster for a controversial Supreme Court nominee, they will.
So rejoice in the disappearance of the filibuster on judicial nominees. It never should have been used to begin with, and it will never be used again, and good riddance. It may hurt a little in the short term, but in the long term, this is better for us.
We are going to ram this down their throats one day. Let me say that again. We are going to ram it right down their throats. And man, is that ever gonna feel good.