in the historical shadows of

I am not terribly impressed with the latest Bill Maher Christine O’Donnell clip.  One, I sort of remember that needling exercise.  Two, I can easily see the basic “tried everything” even including “not Hare Krishna because I didn’t want to be a Vegetarian” item in a respectably acceptable politician — frankly, this one is not all that remarkable an experience, and can be tossed in the background of many a Memoir.
The only thing I can suggest is that in the aggregate, it clashes with the “My way or the highway” tunnel vision of O’Donnell and how her religion weaves into her governing philsophy (such as it is).  Her “witchcraft” does not match up with any real world paganism, and as such her “tried it, didn’t like it” explanation seems to preclude the acceptance of someone who did try it and did like it.

O’Donnell made an odd comment this week about the promise of being the “41st” vote in the upcoming lame duck session, God Willing of course.  I don’t think this applies — I know Illinois has a Senator coming in for the lame duck session, but even if the Democrat wins that race, we still have 41 Republicans in the Senate.  Mostly, we once again highlight our current farce of an understood 60 vote requirement for anything to happen in the Senate.  I guess the nomination of O’Donnell over Castle might well solidify against the possibility that the 41 vote bloc shaking off, even if Castle would win and O’Donnell wouldn’t.

Meanwhile, there is something new to consider about O’Donnell’s Democratic doppleganger — South Carolina’s Alvin Greene.  Consider that the Greene candidacy has a smattering of Democrats suspecting “foul play”.  I hold only the faintest of credence to this one — at most maybe there’s some shenanigans in plopping him on the ballot to see what happens.  But if we’re looking for a motive , ponder the idea that a legitimate challenger in the race, even one in line for a landslide loss who can be mostly ignored, would force some token nod by Jim DeMint in the direction of the South Carolina race, and slow his national Obstructionist Agenda.
He’s a key figure in “the Family”, right?

Well, Jim DeMint is a South Carolina politician — a neo-nullifier, it seems — in a long tradition of South Carolina politicos:  John Calhoun
Calhoun, a brilliant orator and writer, began his political career as a nationalist and proponent of protective tariffs; later, he was a proponent of free trade, states’ rights, limited government, and nullification. Calhoun built his reputation as a political theorist by his redefinition of republicanism to include approval of slavery and minority rights. His redefinition was widely accepted in the South and rejected in the North at the time. His defense of slavery became defunct, but his concept of concurrent majority, whereby a minority has the right to object to or perhaps even veto hostile legislation directed against it, has been incorporated into the American value system.
Of course, “States Rights” stopped heading north at the Mason Dixon line:
He was a major advocate of the 1850 Fugitive Slave Law, which required the co-operation of local law enforcement officials in free states to return escaped slaves.

Pass the torch to Ellison D Smith:
At the 1936 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia, Smith walked out of the convention hall once he saw that a black minister was going to deliver the invocation. Smith recalled, “He started praying and I started walking. And from his great plantation in the sky, John C. Calhoun bent down and whispered in my ear – ‘You done good, Ed.

And I’ve read historians refer to Strom Thurmond’s National rise in 1948 as taking his place to act out the role of John Calhoun for the twentieth century.
… Eulogized as such by none other than South Carolina Congressman Joe Wilson.

All right.  Calhoun and Thurmond fulfilled the role DeMint is playing right now in figthing against the legitimacy of a current Executive.  The perils of this can be seen around:
During the 2008 presidential campaign, I wrote repeatedly that the future of the federal judiciary was one key reason to choose between the candidates. As the Obama administration approaches the halfway mark, his political victory has been frustrated in respect to his impact on the judicial branch.

A recent report by the Alliance for Justice on “The State of the Judiciary” concluded that judicial appointments have been “fraught with dramatic and unprecedented delays” as a result of “a deliberate pattern of obstruction,” to a level unprecedented since 1970. There are about as many vacancies now as when President Obama took office. Even nominations that were approved by the Judiciary Committee have been held up for votes on the floor.

The statistics of approved nominees by recent administrations make the point: Obama, 45 percent; George W. Bush, 59 percent; Bill Clinton, 67 percent; George H. W. Bush, 83 percent — and this is despite President Obama’s significant Democratic majority in the Senate. As a result, the Republican appointees on the federal courts still compose about 60 percent of the active judiciary.

This past Friday, the Associated Press published a rather shocking report about just how poor Obama’s record on judicial vacancies is. “Fewer than half of Obama’s nominees have been confirmed,” the news wire wrote, “102 out of 854 judgeships are vacant,” and “forty-seven of those vacancies have been labeled emergencies by the judiciary because of heavy caseloads.”

I am startled by this acceptance of Obstructionism.
President Barack Obama won’t be able to make recess appointments under a bipartisan Senate deal struck Wednesday night.

Under the deal, the Senate will hold pro forma sessions – where the presiding officer will gavel in, and gavel out – so that the chamber technically will stay in session, even though legislative business won’t occur until after the November elections. By technically staying in session about twice a week, Obama won’t be able to use his constitutional authority to bypass the Senate and install political appointees temporarily during extended recesses.

Both sides got a partial victory out of Wednesday night’s accord. It ensures that Republican senators can’t send Obama’s nominees back to the White House, which would have forced the administration to renominate the choices even if they were partially through the legislative process. Senators have the authority to send back judicial and executive branch nominees if the chamber recesses for more than 30 days, and doing so would have angered Democrats trying to shepherd through a slew of stalled Obama nominees.

And Republicans scored a victory by ensuring Obama can’t make recess appointments before the Senate returns for official business November 15.

While scotching Judicial appointments to delay to a Republican Administration at least makes some ideological sense, the executive appointments strikes me as bad form.  I believe the idea is that the Executive branch belongs to the Republican Party by right.  I’ve always been with Feingold in this dealing…
but Russ Feingold is not going to win with that “Tea Party” crowd on Czars and the Patriot Act, “The Bailout“, or (not that the NRA hasn’t totally won) guns, so maybe I should go ahead and radicalize my political stance for the upcoming Romney Administration.

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