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Last week Sen. Lisa Murkowski issued a statement that the recent change in the senate filibuster rules was “a power grab, plain and simple.” She then went on to say how it saddened her and how the Senate was designed to “guard the views and voices of the minority” and the Democrats had “shattered” that guardianship.
It’s interesting how time affects some people’s memories.
I guess she’s forgotten that in May 2005 she made a speech that was also posted as an editorial where she said: “Let me make it clear that I support an up-or-down vote on all nominations brought to the Senate floor, regardless of the president nominating them or which party controls the Senate. These nominees deserve to be considered based on their merits. Under the “advice and consent” process, every senator has the right to vote against a nominee if he/she does not believe the nominee is qualified for the position, but it is not fair to the nominees to have their lives placed on hold, sometimes in excess of two years. Nor is it right to perpetuate the many vacancies in our courts, particularly when we are seeing the caseload exceed the capacity of the sitting judges.” (Juneau Empire, 5/9/05)
I guess she’s also forgot that in September of 2010 she told the Juneau Bar Association that “the Senate rules should be changed to allow the names of judicial nominees to more quickly be moved to a vote” and that the legislative branch is to a degree holding the judiciary hostage.” (Fairbanks Daily News Miner, 9/24/10)
And in December of 2011 “I stated during the Bush Administration that judicial nominations deserved an up or down vote, except in ‘extraordinary circumstances’ and my position has not changed simply because there is a different president making the nominations.” (12/06/11 Sen. Murkowski’s press release)
That’s why I’m absolutely astonished that she thinks changing the rules so as to actually allow the names of judicial nominees to proceed “more quickly” to an “up or down vote” is now somehow dangerous and unpatriotic.
All I can say is that it’s a sad day when someone you know begins to show sign of memory loss – especially when it’s my own senator. It’s either that, or Senator Murkowski thinks her constituency is comprised of amnesiacs and we’ll forget her partisan flip-flopping.
Now, which of these two possible scenarios is worse I can’t say, but neither bodes well for her trustworthiness.
I’m Keith Nyitray and please don’t forge that the price of freedom is eternal vigilance.